What is Yoga?
The root of the word yoga is "yuj" which means to yoke, join or unify. Yoga is a systematic science of the body and mind, the practice of which leads to union between the self and the Self, individual consciousness and the universal consciousness. There are many paths one can take to reach this union and the most commonly known form of yoga is Hatha Yoga, or the physical practice of asanas (postures) and pranayama (breathing practices) to prepare one for dharana & dhyana (meditation & awareness of higher consciousness), which eventually leads to samadhi where the mind and soul are balanced, still and completely one with the present moment.
How I teach
A senior teacher of a particularly strict yoga lineage once, disparagingly, described my teaching style as "Cocktail Yoga". I actually found this to be a rather apt description of how I teach. I love teaching sequences that combine Vinyasa Yoga, slowed right down (Slow Flow), with elements of various other styles of yoga that I have studied and practiced. I have discovered that a slower, more mindful practice is more inclusive and generally more beneficial. I believe that the conscious synchronisation of the breath with mindful movement leads to a calm and blissful state of body and mind. As no two bodies are alike, I encourage the use of props when required, so that each individual can attain a version of most asanas (postures) with stira (stability) and sukham (comfort/ease). I offer options to accommodate different body types and abilities and take care to ensure each student gets to experience the posture in some way. In my Yin Yoga classes students are encouraged to slow down even more, to go on an inner journey, focusing on their breath and how to negotiate the sensations that are arise and are experienced during the practice. I believe in guiding each student into their own awareness of the practice based on individual capabilities. My wish as a teacher is to instil a sense of familiarity and confidence in the body and breath to be able to connect to one's inner Self, finding transformation, strength, flexibility and peace.