- yoga mat (don’t worry if you don’t have one…there are a few spares)
- a small towel
- comfy clothes
Yoga is a practical philosophy. It is a tradition and a science that has its roots in ancient India.
Today, in our modern Western culture, yoga is everywhere! The term conjures varying images in people’s minds; some think of isolated bearded “gurus” sitting in the famous lotus pose (cross-legged with feet drawn in to rest against the top of the thighs), somewhat unaffected by reality, while others often associate yoga with matters relating to health, longevity and fitness. Due to yoga classes being offered so freely in the West, it has somewhat become commodified and lost its true meaning.
It is difficult to neatly define yoga within the boundaries of traditional Western maxims. In the West, many view yoga as a collection of physical exercises that bring health, vigour and even cure illness. Although these are certainly some of the physical benefits of practicing yoga, it is its spiritual end that is too often, if not always, divorced, where the tendency is to reduce yoga to nothing more than a sport, physical discipline or therapy. Another misconception is that yoga is an abstract, godless mysticism embraced by pagans and hippies which leads one to artificial isolation where one is somewhat out of touch with daily life. A correct understanding of yoga can be described as a way to spiritual liberation that demands a concrete arrangement of feelings and actions.
There are many different schools of yoga, and the schools have a different emphasis on certain disciplines, practices, devotions or theories. Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras are essentially statements of facts that are seen to have existential authenticity on the philosophy of yoga and are the common source and authority for all schools of yoga. Little is known about Patanjali as well as the date of his writings (scholars estimate anywhere between the fourth century BCE and fifth century CE) and it is agreed among historians that Patanjali systematised the concepts and practices of yoga that were present in those early times. The term sutras literally means “stitches” in the sense that these ideas on yoga philosophy are stitched together to create the fabric of knowledge. The format of the Yoga Sutras, like much of Indian knowledge, was verbally passed down from teacher to student as a chant in order to etch the concepts into the student’s memory for life. The Sutras are now in written format and have become the universal authoritative text on yoga philosophy.The term yoga is the English ancestor of the term “yoke” and it basically means “union.” Hence, yoga is a method of spiritual union whereby one may unite their transitory self with the divine, which for many is referred to as, God. The Hindu concept of God would be the infinite Brahman, a spiritual substance that is one with nature and the cosmos. In the Yoga Sutras, Patanjali uses the term Isvara (literally interpreted ‘Lord’) in reference to the divine, or God. Isvara is not a conventional or specific deity or God, but rather Patanjali speaks more to a universal, attributeless Brahman, an impersonal, unknowable, infinite force that is omnipotent and transcends all. To achieve union with Isvara, the divine, which underlies this apparent, ephemeral universe, according to Patanjali, one must reach a state of perfect yoga, or union. If you need more information just drop us a line.[/accordion_item] [accordion_item parent_id=”ywg-faqs” title=”What is Ashtanga yoga?”]
Ashtanga Yoga is a vinyasa system of yoga, vinyasa meaning the synchronisation of breath and movement with a progressive series of postures. The Primary Series of Ashtanga Yoga is called Yoga Chikitsa, or yoga therapy and focuses on building internal heat within the body to detoxify, strengthen and open the body as well as purify the nervous system. This system of yoga works to balance the mind through movement and breath.Yoga With Grace classes are influenced by the Ashtanga yoga method where breathing and movement are synchronised and postures are weaved together in a progressive sequence. If you need more information just drop us a line.[/accordion_item] [accordion_item parent_id=”ywg-faqs” title=”What should I expect from a Yoga With Grace class?”]
Yoga With Grace classes are a vinyasa style class where breath and movement is synchronised and postures are weaved together in a flowing sequence.Grace’s classes offer a balance between asana (postures), pranayama (breath), meditation and relaxation. Grace caters the yoga class to the needs of her students. If you need more information just drop us a line.[/accordion_item] [accordion_item parent_id=”ywg-faqs” title=”Do I need to book in advance to attend a yoga class?”] The general classes do not require you to book in advance, just turn up a few minutes before class and make yourself known to Grace. However, some specialised courses require bookings, such as pregnancy yoga classes or kids yoga. If you need more information just drop us a line.[/accordion_item] [accordion_item parent_id=”ywg-faqs” title=”I am a beginner to yoga, can I still attend?”]Yoga With Grace classes cater for individual needs. All students are welcome to attend and will be offered options throughout the class. An advanced yoga practitioner was a beginner at one stage of his/her life! Just come along to one of our sessions and if you need more information just drop us a line.[/accordion_item] [accordion_item parent_id=”ywg-faqs” title=”Can I attend general yoga classes if I am pregnant?”] If you are a new student to yoga, it is not recommended to practice dynamic vinyasa style yoga during the first three months of pregnancy. After this time you are very welcome to attend any yoga class and postures will be modified for pregnancy. It is important to notify Grace at the beginning of class that you are pregnant so she can offer safe, modified postures when required. If you need more information just drop us a line.[/accordion_item] [accordion_item parent_id=”ywg-faqs” title=”Should I eat before class?”] In the dynamic vinyasa classes, it is ideal to practice on a reasonably empty stomach, or at least 2-3 hours after eating. This assists the yoga practitioner to maintain a light, flowing practice. Practicing on a full stomach can make you feel sluggish and less agile. If you need more information just drop us a line.[/accordion_item] [/accordion] [accordion_item parent_id=”ywg-faqs” title=”I just had a newborn bub, when I start yoga again?”] It is recommended to start a yoga practice again once you have had the “all clear” from your GP approximately 6 weeks after you have given birth. The Yoga with Grace for mums and bubs classes are a gentle way to get back into shape while taking your bub with you to class. You can also attend the general Vinyasa yoga classes (without bub) and modifications can be provided as you gently get back into shape. If you need more information just drop us a line[/accordion_item] [accordion_item parent_id=”ywg-faqs” title=”What can I expect from a Yoga with Grace for Kids class?”] Yoga with Grace for Kids classes offer a range of self-awareness activities for kids while having loads of fun. We explore loads of yoga poses and kids learn how nature and animals can be creatively imitated using their bodies. Kids learn how to weave postures together through sequencing, making yoga sculptures and using music to explore movement and pace. There is emphasis on breath awareness through the use of sound and movements and we practice concentration and relaxation through a range of games and props. Kids just love them! For more information just drop us a line[/accordion_item] [accordion_item parent_id=”ywg-faqs” title=”I’m a guy- can I join the regular classes?”] Grace’s Vinyasa yoga classes are dynamic and incorporate the use of strength, flexibility and focus. While yoga seems to attract more women in general, this kind of class appeals greatly to men and it is common to have several men attend a Yoga With Grace Vinyasa class. Men are most welcome (as are women!) and interestingly find these Vinyasa classes more challenging than originally anticipated! For more information just drop us a line[/accordion_item] [accordion_item parent_id=”ywg-faqs” title=”My employer says she would like to run a health day – can you run a yoga session for us?”] I sure can! Yoga with Grace in your Workplace sessions cater to the needs of your organisation. Send me an email and let me know some information like:
- The name of your company
- How many people will attend the class
- The date and location you are proposing
- What kind of yoga session were you after. For example, would you like a yoga ‘at the desk’ type session, or ‘roll out a mat and get sweaty’ type session?