Frequently Asked Questions
What style of yoga do you teach?
Do you practice Chanting?
This can be a new experience for some people and we invite you to just sit and listen if it is a new practice for you and to join in when you feel too.
Chanting of the mantra om is incredibly calming for the body-mind, it harmonizes the body, mind, emotions and spirit.
Om (aum) is said to be the original sound of the universe, the sound that was made when the universe came into being. When we chant together in a group, the effect is uplifting, we can experience a profound peace through chanting, it expands our awareness and sense of connection with other and the whole universe.
We also chant other mantras at the beginning of each class, mantras for peace, for wisdom and for healing.
The mantras are not difficult to learn and you are given a chant sheet so you can easily read the words, the vowel sounds of sanskrit are the same (or very similar) to Maori vowel sounds, so quite easy for kiwis to read and speak.
What do I need to bring to class?
Do I need to bring a yoga mat?
What do I wear?
Whatever you wear should be light, warm and comfortable, clothing that you can bend, stretch and move easily in. Layers are great as we warm up during the practices.
Should I bring a water bottle?
What time should I arrive?
Regular students, please arrive at least 5 minutes before class begins – doors are open 15 minutes before the start of each class, it gives you time to settle in before we begin, and ensures the rest of the class are not disrupted by late arrivals while we are in the opening stage of the class which is quiet and sacred time for internalising and preparing yourself for the practice of yoga.
Do you have changing facilities?
Yoga is a practice of internalisation, you have all day and evening before and after your yoga class to talk. We come to yoga to have space away from the barrage of information coming at us all day, every day. If you really need to talk to a class mate about something, please leave the room, or wait until after class and you have left the studio.
People come to yoga for some much needed time out from their busy lives. The yoga space is sacred space, once you are settled on your mat with everything you need, please sit or lie quietly until class begins.
If you can, shower before class, if you do not have time, please ensure the body is free of strong odours, this includes strong perfumes or deodorants.
Do you teach headstand & arm balancing poses?
Do you teach pregnancy yoga classes.
Can I practice yoga if I have just had a serious illness or have physical issues that prevent me from exercising normally?
However, if you are suffering from a serious illness or disorder, or if you are taking medication to manage an illness or imbalance in the body, you must seek medical advise before beginning any exercise programme, and ensure you discuss this with your yoga teacher before you begin a yoga practice.
If you have an ongoing condition, have had a recent medical event, surgery, cancer, heart attack, we may ask for a certificate from your GP or specialist to ensure that a general yoga class is suitable for you at this time.
Yoga is very prominent in our minds these days as a bit of a cure all, it seems it is good for every malady under the sun. But, this does not necessarily mean your every day general yoga class at your local studio will be suitable for you.
The physical practices of yoga are quite demanding and unless you are attending a class that is designed specifically for a condition, ‘gentle yoga’ or ‘yoga for breast cancer’ for example, it is really important you speak to the teacher before you attend your first class to ensure the class is right for you.
Yoga is wonderful for many conditions, but often the practices you need for your specific condition won’t be included in a general class. Yoga Therapy is totally different to a general class, it is one on one work with a qualified yoga therapist in which you will receive a practice that is created for your specific needs. We have some wonderful yoga therapists in Wellington and New Zealand, if you are looking for a yoga therapist, please get in touch with me.
Simple guidlines for your physical practice.
If the breath becomes laboured, or there is pain while doing the asana, adjust your body untll the posture feels comfortable. Always respect your body and your intuition keeping in mind.
The yoga sutra regarding asana (postures) says – “Sthiram sukham asanam – the posture should be steady & comfortable”.
We do not have to push or strain in the postures to receive the full benefits of the practices.
Yoga is the practice of breath led movement, we move the body in synchronization with either the inhalation or the exhalation (you teacher will guide you through this). When we move the body in this way, we only come as far as our natural range of movement allows, this makes for a safe and effective practice.
Guidlines for the breath while practicing yoga.
Guidlines for where to place your awareness whilst practicing yoga.
If the mind wanders, and this is the nature of the mind, to think, simply bring the attention back to the breath.
In yoga we also work with focusing the gaze whilst in the postures, this is called Dristhi.
Utilising the tool of dristhi can really deepen your practice, though the gaze is outward, the effect is one of internatlisation. It developes concentration and helps the mind to become steady.
Guidlines on eating before class
When we are practicing it takes energy, and we really want to conserve our energy for our practice. If you have just eaten a large meal, not only will some of the postures feel uncomfortable, your energy will be going into the digestive process, and not so readily available for your practice.
Please note that if you have a medical condition, such as diabetes, you must follow medical guidelines for food intake and exercise.
A to your Q on dietary and lifestyle for yoga practitioners.
You will gain the benefits of a regular practice no matter what your lifestyle. However, when practicing regularly, many people find that their diet changes to a lighter and healthier food intake, and the desire for many of the things we use for stress release, alcohol, drugs, cigarettes start to take a back seat as the body adjusts to the feel-good factor of yoga.
We get the ‘Yoga Bug’ , and instead of doing all the other stuff we normally do to make ourselves feel good, we just do more yoga!