What are is Yin, Yang, Vinyasa vs Hatha yoga?
Before describing the styles, I hope a little context can help. When yoga first started (you might hear 5000 years ago but evidence-based approach estimates 2300 years ago) there were no physical poses as we know them today, other than sitting for meditation.. Evidence suggests that Hatha yoga (15th Century) was the first classical tradition that included numerous poses, or 'asanas', but still as a means of enabling better meditation and spiritual growth. So all modern styles of physical yoga (eg. Vinyasa, Ashtanga, Iyengar) have grown from, and fit under, the Hatha Yoga methodology, though sometimes you might see Hatha listed as a style in itself, representing a slow, gentle style of yoga practice. Vinyasa means 'sequence' and is a type of physical yoga with a flow from one pose into another, sometimes strong and sweaty sometimes gentle.
Yin Yang are actually terms that come from Chinese/Taoist practices, and represent a combination of more 'Yang' strentghtening and energetic flows and "Yin" passive holds for flexibilty, restoration and mental focus, interchanged at the beginning or end of the class.
Yoga for Sport uses the poses and breathing techniques from Yin, and Vinyasa towards athletic development, both physical and mental.
What if I'm a complete beginner?
Yoga is very much about the breath, it's not about getting your foot behind your ear. You might often hear "if you can breath, you can do yoga"! All beginners are welcome, AND you also qualify for a 1/2 price one-to-one before you drop in to the group, which can give you a great foundation.
What are the breathing techniques?
One of the many elements of yoga, beyond the 'poses' (asanas) is called Pranayama, which is vaguely translated to breathing techniques, but more specifically Prana=energy/life force, Ayama= to extend. Breath is directly associated with Prana. Pranayama techniques are about learning to proper diaphragmatic breathing, and manipulating the breath (including breatholds in an intelligent way), to affect our state.
Yogis knew even before the science caught up, that by manipulating the breath, we can affect the nervous system so effectively, that we it can manage stress, improve our sleep, our immunity and general health. Science research has also hugely advanced to clearly show the correlation between breath control and all of the above including techniques such as Dr Buteyko's methods for improving health conditions such as asthma and sleep apnia and for improving endurance in top athletes. If you are interested to read more I'd recommend the book Restoring Prana, and a chap called James Nestor, author of Breath, and the Oxygen Advantage for athletic endurance and sleep apnia and asthma.
What if I have an injury?
Many people practice yoga with all sorts of past injuries, shoulders and knees being most common. Often yoga is part of their rehab, because its aimed at moving mindfully, and shifting the nervous system into states where the body can repair. Yoga teachers aren't qualified to provide a diagnosis, but I can certainly suggest to you what poses to avoid, or how to modify them, assuming you do have a proper diagnosis.
If you suffer from a specific injury or are managing a condition please remember that it is up to you whether or not a practice is right for you, but if you aren't sure contact me and I can give you some general guidelines that may help. If you have recently had surgery please make sure you check with your physician before you do the class.
Is yoga a form of religion?
No. It is open to people of all faiths as well as atheists. It has always however, since its inception, been a spiritual practice, though today it can be practiced purely as a physical exercise, and no one will ever tap you on the shoulder and ask if your quest is for Enlightenment. It is suggested in certain texts that it helps if you believe in some God or 'ultimate reality' or just 'something bigger' but you don't have to. Hatha yoga has strong Buddhist influences (moreso than Hindu as research recently found) and is centred around the idea of understanding our body, our mind, why we struggle, and cultivating contentment by expanding our awareness of Self and the world we live in. It's certainly a lot more than just a bunch of poses, it includes breathing and meditaion practices as guidelines for 'full' living. All you need is an open mind and you are encouraged to experience and adopt whatever works for you rather than accepting any of the teachings in a dogmatic way.
So at a minimum it'll make you stronger, more balanced and more flexible on the mat, and it's totally up to you how many layers of life philosophy you want to unpeal.
If you'd like to learn more about the history of yoga, I'd recommend this chap but you'll need a cup of tea and a bit of time. Sorry I couldn't find you a shorter one, but he's excellent in my opinion.
FIRST TASTER CLASS 50% OFF.
STUDENT DISCOUNTED RATE £5/class monthly batch payment or £8 PayAsYouG
ADULT RATE £8/class monthly batch or £12 PayAsYouGo
COUPLES OR PARENT/SIBLING 2nd PERSON HALF-PRICE
IF MONEY IS TIGHT - that's sometimes when we need yoga the most! Pay even £1, would much prefer you came! I operate with the principle of trust and life's too short for money-shame.
Pay using paypal.me/florendiayoga or online banking F.Buckingham account 01570436 sort code 30-96-96
Monthly batches payable in advance.
ONLINE YOGA FAQ'S
What will I need?
Ideally as big a screen as you have that's movable, eg. a laptop or tablet, a mat if you have one, don't worry if you don't, a cushion and a blanket (optional)
How does registration work? Once you register, you'll be sent a confirmation email with the link to Join the Class. If this is your very first Zoom meeting, when you click on this link, it will first install it, just this first time ,and most people do so with no problem at all.
Does my camera have to be on? No but....We all sometimes feel like we just want to 'hide away' and it's totally your prerogative. Mostly students will have their screen on, because they prefer a live class to a pre-recorded youtube so that they get a sense of 'aliveness' and 'community' by visually practicing alongside their fellow students. Also it allows me to stay in tune to whether you are in synch with the my choices of movement that I give, and to make sure you are practicing as safely as possible, rather than teach a bunch of still emojis...
IN-PERSON YOGA - FAQ'S
When and Where are the classes ?
See home page.
Last updated Aug 2021. Though the rules are more relaxed today, I'm keeping with 10 people max in the Scouts Hut capacity, and in the St Andrews URC the hall is very spacious. No masks necessary during class but obviously it's your choice if you want to wear one. Bring your own mat or let me know if you don't have one.
<None at the moment with Covid> Occasionally I may offer a super gentle physical assist - While many people love to receive help to get a different feel of a pose, plenty of folks feel uncomfortable with physical contact or translate it that they are somehow 'failing' which is so not the case, since yoga is not about that at all. I will always try to ask your permission and will always appreciate a heads up from you or a sign that you would rather not be assisted.
Do I need to sign up or can I just turn up?
An email or text in advance so we can keep to capacity
Where do I park?
St Andrews has plenty of on-site free parking. 1st Weybridge Scouts Hut is off Baker Street which is now a no-through road. Usually there's space and if you come from the top end, there's a small car park on your right behind Morrisons, or if you plan to buy anything at Morrisons you can park in there.
What do I bring?
Your own yoga mat. If you don't have one let me know in advance.
For maximum enjoyment of the class, best not to eat within 1.5-2 hours