Ashtanga Yoga- A Feminine Approach

Mysore Ashtanga with Andrea- A Feminine Approach -contact for dates and times.

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Ashtanga means ‘eight limbs’ as laid out in ‘Yoga Sutra’ by Patanjali.  The Ashtanga method of Asana practice (postures) was interpreted by T. Krishnamacharya and Sri K. Pattabhi Jois from an ancient text called theYoga Korunta, which they claimed described a unique system of Hatha yoga developed by Vamana Rishi. ‘Asana’ is only one branch of Ashtanga System.

It has become a classical Yoga system that combines movement and breathing together (Yinyasa) through a set sequence of alignment based Asana. This is can be a challenging form of yoga, strengthening and toning the body whilst releasing tension and detoxifying the body. The added emphasis is on the breath (ujayii) creates a more focused and meditative practice.

This set sequence also is great for those who wish to take their yoga deeper and practice on their own regularly.

Hi all, thought I’d write a little about myself, my experience and style of teaching, save on waffle and more time on the mat!
For those who don’t know me, I am from UK, moved to Pretoria about 3 years ago. (via cape town/Tanzania)
I have taught yoga for over 10 years. (practicing for 20) my original foundation training and practice was Ashtanga. And taught for many Years In UK, and Tanzania. Hatha, Ashtanga, restorative, pregnancy, postnatal and baby and well woman (womb) yoga. I started training in Well Woman Yoga around 2010 with Uma Dinsmore Tuli and opened to the world of Women’s yoga and womb work. My ashtanga practice changed dramatically as I listened to my body rather than just push push push. Working through fertility, miscarriages pregnancy and postnatal and my menstrual Cycles taught me no one practice is suitable for every day.
I use my deep knowledge of anatomy, ashtanga values, in my teaching, Focusing on connection with the present moment of a moving mediation, at your own pace of your own breath..
As a well woman and cyclical yoga specialist I draw from my wisdom of the female body and psyche and our cycles and weave this into ashtanga. On the surface the 2 paths at first don’t seem to match but in my experience is that there is so much beauty, groundedness and femininity in the ashtanga practice, when you strip back the masculine ego driven appearance.
So as a ‘well women’ ashtanga teacher this is what I gift but also ask you to respect.-
• I honour the sequence of ashtanga asana as set out by Krishnamacharya and Pattabhi Jois.
• But honouring the female physiological adaptations in regards to pelvic health, structure, muscular system (female mula bandha)
• I will give alternatives in menstruation and pregnancy for physiological and energetic reasons.
• I won’t push you into asana you are not ready for or not able to do.. I encourage your ego also listens and respects my decision. Feel free to disagree too! I am open for healthy questioning.
• In tradition in ashtanga I do not demonstrate the sequence other than gesturally. In with mysore nor led classes.
• Adjustments are traditionally part of ashtanga sequence. Most of my adjustments are verbal, then a light touch, stronger adjustments are reserved and only after communication and consent. I respect your body and there is no right way to look in the posture. Indicate if you prefer hand off that day.
• Encourage each woman to listen to their body and honour their life stages, and menstrual cycles. (are you working through fertility, pregnancy, 2 years postnatal, peri or post menopause? )
• Encouraging deep breath awareness in each asana and sequence.
• Encourage you to practice with self acceptance and compassion. There is no competition especially with yourself.
• I encourage a new start every time. To listen how are your energies, bodies today. Progression in the sequence is not measured by the number or depth of Asana.
• Every student will take deep rest for at least 15 mins post asana. If you don’t have much time then it is better to skip postures so your body and nervous system can rebalance.
Basic Yoga Etiquette-
• No excessive talking during asana, pranayama or relaxation. (Though happy for questions in mysore)
• Take water if needed but try not to use it as a distraction.
• No gum, jewellery, perfume, also come clean please! Phones off or silent.
• Keep clothes simple, cool and fitting. Look after your boobs- wear a descent sports bra!
• Notify if you are going to be late or if you need to leave at certain time (I will give you time for proper rest)
• Let me know if you have any injuries or something doesn’t feel right, also if you are menstruating or possible pregnancies.
• Lastly have fun, enjoy respect and give gratitude to your beautiful body.