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What is Yoga?

Is Yoga for me? What once was a practice only known to those from the eastern part of the world, yoga is now becoming more universal. Evidence of yoga’s existence dates back 5,000 years ago. It is not a religion as some may believe, however it is adherent to all religions and improves a person’s spiritual growth. The word ‘yoga’ is derived from Sanskrit roots meaning ‘union’. The union, or connection, of the mind, body, and spirit, makes it a holistic practice. When doing poses, or asanas, the movement of your body connects with the mind by cultivating focus and awareness through the integration and regulation of the breath, known as pranayama. This moves energy through the body, clears the mind, and allows you to connect to your higher self, or spirit, helping to strengthen your individual faith. Yoga helps you to live fully in the present moment, and live a purposeful life.
Yoga is for everyone, and you start right from where you are. It doesn’t matter your age, gender, state of health, fitness level, weight, etc. You don’t have to be flexible to start, as many believe. You will gain great flexibility through the practice of yoga, but the benefits go way beyond. A variety of classes are offered to allow you the opportunity to begin where you are. This gives you the room to grow your individual practice. Yoga is not competitive. It is all about you and your individual growth.

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF YOGA?

The benefits stretch way beyond the physical aspects. You will gain strength, body tone, and flexibility, but it has an effect on all of the anatomical systems in the body. It brings you to a complete state of balance, restoring and rejuvenating the mind and body. Yoga detoxifies the body by circulating fresh blood and releasing old toxins. This in turn boosts the immunity system. It helps alleviate aches and pains, stiffness, fatigue, insomnia, digestive problems, headaches, sluggishness. It helps strengthen mental and emotional clarity, and hormonal balance. Everyday stress can take a toll on our nervous system. Yoga can help relieve the stress and tension that builds up in our body, allowing you to cope with stress in a healthy way. Yoga provides great therapeutic benefits for medical ailments, alongside a doctor’s care.

AM I TOO OLD FOR YOGA?

Yoga is beneficial at any age, particularly in middle age and after. As we age the body’s recuperative powers decline and resistance to illness is weakened. Yoga generates energy, so a person can look forward to a healthier future. It is described as therapeutic as well as preventive because practicing yoga boosts the immunity and circulates fresh blood to areas affected by disease, thus improving health and immunity
*Calm classes for All Levels (Great for Beginners)

YOGA BASICS*

Suitable for beginners as well as any student of yoga who wishes to increase their knowledge of skeletal/postural alignment and awareness.  Standing and seated poses, inversions, and seated twists are practiced as well as breathing techniques.  As a by-product, this class increases muscle strength, flexibility, and lung capacity.  The big gift of this class is the skill you will learn in how to practice any other type of yoga safely.

YIN DEEP STRETCH*

Yin Yoga is yoga for the joints. It is a great complement to the active yang yoga practices. Our joints become stiff and rigid as we age if we do not take proper care. It will affect our mobility, and cause injury and stress to the body. Yin Yoga safely stresses the deep connective tissues in the joints in a gentle way, as poses are held for longer periods. This builds healthy blood flow, replenishing new growth of healthy connective tissue in the joints. The muscles relax, while the connective tissue does all of the work. This class is highly encouraged for all levels, due to the importance of joint health for all styles of yoga. It is relaxing, but powerful at the same time.

RESTORATIVE YOGA*

Suitable for everyone! Restorative yoga is a deeply healing yoga that does not involve stretching or muscle work.  Instead, props are used to support and align the body in various yoga poses for the purpose of calming the nervous system, increasing circulation throughout the body, relaxing the mind and building a strong breathing practice.  A wonderful and safe class for those who are injured, stressed, tired, or who have a chronic health issue.  This is the dessert of yoga.

GENTLE FLOW

This is a slow paced flow class that builds body awareness through the integration of postures and breath. It will build strength, endurance, and flexibility, empowering the body and calming the mind. You will safely and effectively stretch and lengthen your body through a flow of supportive postures and breathing techniques. Great for beginners, or those experienced practitioners who want a gentler pace. 

MIXED LEVEL FLOW

This class is a great class for those ready to move on from a Yoga Basics Class. Students who want to attend must have some yoga experience. The teacher will guide students through the proper alignment and form, while encouraging more experienced practitioners to challenge themselves, building strength, flexibility, and balance for all. 

VINYASA FLOW

A challenging, vigorous style of yoga that links postures with the breath through a sequence of movements. It builds heat in the body, while the flow connects you to the circular nature within yourself. You will build strength endurance, flexibility, balance, and a calm state of mind. This is appropriate for intermediate practitioners and advanced, as you will be challenged to meet your edge.

YOGA FOR STUDENT ATHLETES

High School/Middle School Athletes are welcome to attend! Come learn how stretching in a Yoga Class will improve your performance!!

Nia - YOGA DANCE

DANCE LIKE YOU OM IT! 
A Fusion of Yoga, Dance, and Martial Arts. Great for any level, come move and flow with the music! Beginners welcome!

PRE/POST-NATAL YOGA

If you are in your first or second trimester of pregnancy and have a physician’s note, you can attend many of our yoga classes. Modifications can be given that are specially designed to keep you and your baby safe during pregnancy. There are many yoga poses mothers-to-be can do that are extremely beneficial before having a child. Many of our yoga classes are designed to allow your body to restore itself after pregnancy. A stretch, basic or restorative Yoga class will help you get back to comfort with your new precious newborn. Please call us before you sign up for your first class at 913-217-7153.

Yoga Etiquette

(Yoga Etiquette Guide by 90 Monkeys.)

Before class
Eating & Drinking: It is best to let meals or snacks digest before coming to class. After a meal, give yourself 2 hours before practicing yoga. After a snack, give yourself 1 hour. You may drink water during class as needed, but you may feel more comfortable if you hydrate prior to class.
What to wear: Wear comfortable, stretchy clothes that are not too loose. Choose appropriately based on how your clothing may respond to things like sweat, twisting, lying down, or bending forward.
Bring: A yoga mat, towel, and water. If you forget to bring your mat, we have complimentary mats, towels, $1.00 bottled water and other necessary yoga props for your convenience.
Avoid: Wearing strong scents such as perfumes, deodorants, essential oils, or cologne. Please ensure that your mat, clothes, and body are odor-free to help maintain the purity of the practice space.
Get there early: If it is your first time, please arrive 15 minutes early to fill out any necessary forms, get changed, if needed, and settle in.
Once you arrive
Footwear: Take off your shoes and socks before you walk into the practice space and place them in the designated changing or shoe-storage area.
Electronic devices: Please turn your cell phone off, or, better yet, do not take it into the practice space with you. If you do need to keep your cell phone with you and turned on during class (i.e. if you are a physician on call or a pilot on standby), then please set it to vibrate. If you’ve brought your cell phone in with you and it accidentally rings aloud during class, please turn it off as soon as you safely can.
Communicate: If you have any injuries, limitations, or concerns, please notify your instructor before class begins so they can help you stay safe.
Enter the room: When you enter the room, please respect the sacredness of the space by entering quietly. Try to keep noise to a minimum when setting up your mat and collecting your props (i.e. block, blanket, strap) and be sensitive to whether conversations with others may disturb those around you. Also, please make sure that you have (quietly) closed the door behind you in order to maintain the temperature of the practice space and to reduce any noise from outside.
Positioning your mat: Orient your mat so you will be facing the teacher. If you are new to yoga and are trying out a class that may have some more experienced students in it, then you might consider placing your mat in a row behind the front so you can follow along more easily. Place your props and your water bottle nearby your mat to keep them handy, but make sure they are not in your way.
Making space for others: If a fellow student arrives and there is not an immediate space available for their mat, please extend the yoga love by adjusting your mat in order to create space for them.
Other people’s mats: For many people, their mat is a safe, sacred space. Please respect this by not stepping on others’ mats, if at all possible.
During class
Take Child’s pose at any time: If at any point you feel that you need a rest, then please take Child’s pose. You can return to Child’s pose at any time—even if the teacher does not specifically cue it—and then rejoin the class when you are ready.
If you feel that you need to leave the room: It is not uncommon to experience dizziness, fatigue, or discomfort during your first yoga classes, especially if you are practicing in a warm room. If you must leave the room, then please choose a point in the class that is resting (i.e. Child’s pose or Down Dog) to excuse yourself, and leave and return quietly.
Communicate: Let your teacher know if you are confused, are having trouble with something, or are experiencing any pain. Your teacher is here to serve you but cannot help if s/he does not know there’s an issue. A quick mention to the teacher or asking for help can be the difference between having a horrible time and being comfortable enough to focus on your practice and other students may benefit from your question!
Follow your teacher’s cues: Unless you are taking Child’s Pose in order to rest or center yourself before rejoining the class, then please follow your teacher’s cues rather than following your own sequence. If there is a pose that you feel you cannot or should not do, then please let your teacher know and s/he can provide a modification or an alternative.
If you are late: Being on time is of course optimal, however if you arrive more than five minutes after class has started, then it’s best to come back for another class; the first five minutes provide centering and warming up, and joining in a class without having had this can risk injury and can also be distracting for fellow students. If you’ve arrived within the first five minutes of class, then, if it’s OK with the teacher, please enter the studio and gather your props quietly, and choose a space for your mat that is close to the entrance so as not to distract other students. If possible, join the sequence as your teacher cues it. If there are some warm-up postures you need before you can join in the sequence, then quietly take these and join the sequence as soon as you can.
Savasana: Savasana, or Corpse pose, is the last pose we do in class, and consists of lying down on our mats with our bodies relaxed and our eyes closed so that we may absorb the benefits of our yoga practice. This is a very important part of yoga class, so please give yourself a full Savasana! Your teacher will let you know when it’s time to come out of the pose.
Leaving class early: Please plan to stay for the entire class. If this is not possible, then please let your teacher know before class starts, and take a short Savasana before you depart. When you leave, be mindful of your fellow students by being quiet as you collect your items, return your props, and depart the room.
After class
Clean your immediate area: If you borrowed a mat from the studio, wipe it down if needed and return it. If there is moisture on the floor around your mat—either from your perspiration or your water bottle—wipe it up with your towel. If you used props, put them back.
Communicate: Speak with your teacher after class if you have any questions or concerns about your yoga practice.
Make sure you take your own belongings: Double-check that those are your shoes! This goes for anything else you leave out during class, like sweatshirts, jackets, or water bottles.
Hold any loud conversations away from the studio: Please remember to keep your voices low when you are nearby the practice space, even if you are outside of it. It’s great to feel invigorated after class, but your voice can travel far in the tranquil environment of the studio, so please be mindful of others.