YOGA WITH SIMON
Strength, Flexibility & Well-being
“When the breath wanders the mind also is unsteady. But when the breath is calmed the mind too will be still, and the yogi achieves long life. Therefore, one should learn to control the breath.”
Hatha Yoga Pradipika
DYNAMIC VINYASA YOGA
Aimed towards students of all levels, having an existing practice is an advantage but previous experience is not essential. Simon can adapt the class where necessary to include various options for different levels of experience.
Vinyasa flow is a dynamic flowing sequence of asanas; synchronising the breath to enter a deep meditative practice. These classes will guide you towards joining the aspects of your physical, spiritual, and emotional well-being.
Vinyasa like other lineages of yoga originates from Hatha yoga and refers to the alignment of movement with breath.
The aim when practising the asanas and pranayama exercises, you are preparing the mind and body for meditation.
Practising with a deep meditative state of mind enables students to achieve heightened levels of self-awareness, deepening the connection with the inner-self, often allowing students to experience moments of spiritual awakening and enlightenment . This is the ultimate goal of yoga.
Hatha Yoga is an ancient Indian system that dates as far back as 5000 years ago. The Hatha Yoga Pradīpikā is the ancient Sanskrit manual of Hatha Yoga, it gives the instructions on how to practice the asanas (yoga poses) and pranayama (breathing exercises) to prepare the mind, body and spirit for meditation.
Hatha Yoga is refers to the powerful union of the active and masculine qualities of the sun with the receptive and feminine qualities of the moon, ‘Ha’ meaning ‘sun’ and ‘tha’ meaning ‘moon’.
The division of poses are ‘solar’, generating heat and energy; and ‘lunar’, which tend to be cooling and neutralising.
The asanas are commonly recognised with other lineages thus making Hatha Yoga the most common and recognised style of yoga practised outside of India.
Traditional Hatha Yoga is the foundation of more modern lineages of yoga practised today including Astanga and Vinyasa Yoga.
“Many paths are possible; whichever path is sincerely travelled leads to inner peace.”
What is yoga?
‘Yoga’ literally means ‘union’, ultimately the action of bringing together or uniting the mind and body.
We do this through practising yoga poses (asanas) and breathing exercises (pranayama) to help attain a higher state of consciousness within our true self.
The aim of any yoga practice is to improve and maintain good physical health and well-being, but if you chose to take your practice to a deeper level then your ultimate goal will be to reach a state of meditative absorption, referred to as ‘Samadhi’.
What are some of the benefits of yoga?
Yoga helps toward living a healthy balanced lifestyle. It focuses on both mind and body, in time you can expect to increase your flexibility, build and tone your muscle, improve your overall well-being and boost your self-esteem.
Is yoga a religion?
In a single word, no!
Yoga is sometimes thought to be a religion, it is actually an ancient philosophical system that focuses on building strength, increasing flexibility and breathing exercises that deepens the awareness with the aspects of physiological and emotional well-being.
Can anyone do yoga?
Almost anyone can do yoga, it is just a matter of exploring the different styles of yoga, getting acquainted with different teachers to find a yoga class and teacher that you feel comfortable with.
In Bristol there is a vast number of teachers and styles to choose from. It is recommenced to try a few before forming any judgement on any particular style. Different teachers bring something different to each of the styles on offer.
Most importantly, find a class that you enjoy and one that ignites curiosity into the wonderful journey of self exploration.
Have health conditions or injuries?
Your health and well-being is extremely important. All yoga teachers want to make sure that students feel comfortable and safe at all times, ensuring that you pose no risk to yourself or others in the class.
Having a health condition or injury doesn’t automatically mean that you can’t practice yoga. Yoga is often encouraged by health professionals.
If you have a health condition or injury please let Simon know prior to the class, this will help him to give you clear guidance on the do’s and don’ts to ensure that you feel comfortable and practice safely preventing your health condition or injury from worsening.
This is also applies if you are or think you might be pregnant, care must be taken with some of the poses to protect you and the development of the unborn fetus.
If in any doubt regarding any aspect of your health, please ask your GP, health professional or Simon for further advice.
Does age matter?
No, not at all. There is no official definitive age restriction, but finding a class that you feel comfortable with in terms of pace and strength required is very important.
This will ensure that you enjoy the classes but is key to maximising the long term benefits that yoga has to offer.
Do I need previous experience?
Not at all, classes are suitable for students if all levels of students and can be easily adapted to include new students.
For us all, going to a class or doing anything new the first time can be daunting, rest assured you will be made to feel welcome from the moment you arrive and hopefully you’ll feel comfortable right away.
Everyone practices at their own pace and there is no pressure to do anything that you don’t feel comfortable doing, you can take rest at any time during a class.
As you start to build and maintain a regular practice your confidence will grow and you might find yourself trying out some of the more advanced poses.
What can I expect?
Expect to be made very welcome, you will be given clear, concise and easy to follow instructions from Simon, his verbal cues guide everyone through the duration of the class in a clear and easy to follow manner.
Any technical terms will be simplified when needed and you can feel free to ask questions at any time.
Contact Simon if you are still unsure, he will gladly answer any further questions you may have.
“Yoga is the practice of quieting the mind.”