ASANAS AND PRANAYAMA
Asanas are defined as positions. Postures were designed to act as stable positions for extended meditation. But more than that, the Asanas open energy channels (chakras) and the physical centers of the body. Asanas purify and strengthen the body and control and focus the mind. Asanas are a classic part of yoga’s eight limbs, which stipulates that asanas should be stable and comfortable, casual and permanent.
The word Pranayama comes from Sanskrit and is usually translated as “breathing technique”. Pranayama originates from the yogic science, which is about checking the “flow” of Prana (life energy). In yoga it’s said that when you control this pranic flow, you control the physical and mental flow of energy in the universe, and on a daily/practical level this controls your bodily systems including respiratory, somatic, internal organs, and the brain.
In Vinyasa yoga, we practice Ujjayi breath, which is an invigorating and soothing tool. Breathing creates heat in the body which has a direct impact on the performance of the different asanas. It’s not the only breathing we use but most often it is called a base breath for other Pranayama exercises.
BANDHAS, GRANTHIS AND KOSHAS
Bandha means keeping or strengthening; bandhas create stihra (stability / support) and allows for freedom of movement. They collect the body’s internal wind / energy and therefore provides a better and stronger flow of energy and body and thereby mind.
Granthis (Dukha – negative space) all obstacles to the free flow of energy is called Granthis. By understanding the nature of these Granthis we can find the optimum potential energy of our body and mind. In other words we will be able to change from Granthis (dukha – negative space) to Sukha (positive space)
Koshas – you can call the various levels that we have in the body… the physical, intellectual, energetic body, etc. These levels are important to be aware of through learning, export and training.
ANATOMY AND ALIGNMENT
Through anatomy we ensure a comprehensive understanding of our students and the body and its movements. We often work with themes or understanding of individual areas. At each training a class follows an anatomical examination. This means that we create insight into positions versus physics / anatomy in motion, both through theory and practice.
The purpose of alignment or adjustment / correction for optimal posture is to get in touch with your inner body. When we have taught for a while we begin to get a better overview of the class and will be aware that not all students have the correct alignment (optimal posture). In this part of the course we focus on the most appropriate ways to move students into their optimum positions.
THAI YOGA MASSAGE
In this part of the course you will learn all the basic elements of massage technique. We review and work with techniques that will enable you to perform a 1½ hour full body massage, which includes muscle massage, yoga features, acupressure, joint manipulation, relaxation exercises and work with energy pathways. You will be given tools to work with the body, both in a complete 90 minute body massage and also with focusing on specific problems. As we are becoming yoga teachers we will bring attention to how to use these techniques when teaching yoga classes both for the corrections of students or as therapeutic tools in one-to-one sessions.
YOGA NIDRA, DEEP RELAXATION & MEDITATION
Yogic sleep or deep relaxation is an essential part of your yoga practice. There are three parts to Proper Relaxation: Physical, Mental and Spiritual. The state of the mind and body is directly connected and if your muscles are relaxed, your mind is also relaxed. If the mind is restless, the body will suffer from this. It is a matter of “letting go” instead of “holding on”. There are many types of meditation, and in the beginning meditation is more correctly referred to as focus or concentration. Meditation is constant observation of the mind, and means that we focus on the mind in order to bring it to “silence” and experience the Self. Through meditation we become aware of the “space” which is independent of the mind and the true being can thereby emerge. Meditation helps us to practice and cultivate being in the moment.
HISTORY AND PHILOSOPHY
Yoga is considered a divine science of life that came to enlightened wise men in meditation.
Yoga is first mentioned in the two ancient Indian scriptures;
The Vedas and the Upanishads (the later part of the Vedas), and the latter became the platform of yoga teaching and philosophy called Vedanta.
During this training, we will create an overview of the development of yoga as well as get acquainted with Yoga’s 8 limps, a set of ethical rules that are considered an important part of yoga practice.