What is Yoga?
’Yoga’ comes from the Sanskrit root ‘yuj’, which means to yoke, bind or join together. It can also be translated as ‘union’ or ‘oneness’. At the deepest spiritual level, yoga allows us to reveal and merge into the true essence of our being, by which we realise that there is no separation between anyone or anything.
There are many aspects to yoga and the vastness of yogic practices means that any single definition is limiting. Generally speaking, we can say that yoga is an empirical science and philosophy, aimed at taking us closer to revealing our true nature.
Yogic practices include, but are certainly not limited to, devotional practices such as kirtan and deity worship, meditation, āsana (physical postures), and prāṇāyāma.
Yoga is not about becoming a better person. It is a process of deconditioning, stripping back the layers of the limited mind based sense of self, to reveal the limitless Self that we are.
“Yoga is the cessation of the movements of the mind. Then there is abiding in the Seer’s own form.”
Hatha yoga is the aspect of yoga that works with physical postures, (āsana), to bring the physical body into alignment and energetic balance.
We teach weekly yoga classes in Totnes. This is a form of classical hatha yoga practiced in a contemplative style. We often describe this style as ‘meditation in motion’.
The asanas we teach stay true to the ancient yogic texts, such as the Hatha Yoga Pradīpikā and Gheranda Samhita. We synthesise the physical āsanas with a constant inner awareness and the practice of Self-enquiry.
The practice is performed with the eyes closed and we generally hold the āsanas for longer than other styles of yoga. This helps us to interiorise and connect with the more subtle aspects of our being such as the energy centres, (chakras), and our true essence that can be perceived as a dynamic stillness.
We practice with a non-pushing attitude, striking a balance between effort and relaxation.
Yoga does not discriminate, and this style is inclusive of all bodies. People of all ages, body shapes, sizes and ability can practice this style of hatha yoga.
New to Yoga?
We appreciate that the idea of doing yoga, especially in a group setting, can be intimidating for some people (we have been there!). Check out some handy tips and hints that can make starting a practice or joining a new group easier.
We offer private classes for groups of up to five persons or one on one tuition is available.
Private classes are ideal if you are just starting a yoga practice and don’t feel confident to join a group class. Private classes are also highly recommended if you are recovering from an injury, are pregnant or are in post-natal recovery.
The start of each session will begin with discussing your individual needs. We will do a 75 minute class together and regroup at the end of the session.
Note: reduced prices for on going individual sessions available on request.
|Price||Class duration||Group type|
|£70||75 minutes||Private group|
|£100||75 minutes||Corporate group|
“I took a deep breath and listened to the old bray of my heart: I am, I am, I am.”
‘Prāṇāyāma’ means the control of energy through the breath. Generally speaking, it is the regulation of inhalation, exhalation and retention of the breath, while maintaining constant awareness and concentration.
Some of the main benefits of practising prāṇāyāma include mental calmness, reduced anxiety, respiratory health and energetic balance.
Techniques include full yogic breath, rhythmic breathing, alternate nostril breathing (nadi shodhana), cooling prāṇāyāmas (shitali and sitkari), longer breathing and vowel prāṇāyāma.
Guided Group Classes
We offer guided group prāṇāyāma sessions. The prāṇāyāma techniques offered at each class will depend on the needs and experience of the class.
We come to you. Classes can be done in an empty office space or lunchroom, on chairs or mats/cushions on the ground. What is most important is that the space is quiet and will be undisturbed. Please contact us so we can help develop a package that best suits you.
£50 per 45 minute session (longer and shorter sessions can be made available and prices adjusted accordingly).
‘Most people undervalue the powers of the breath, but the early Jesuits in the West and the early Yogis in India knew better, for they embodied breathing exercises in their system of training. Those who have not studied the subject cannot realise what striking changes can be brought about in the body and the mind through the simple means of changing the breath rhythm.’
“Once you understand the grammar of yoga;
you can write your poetry of movements.”