Beginners Basics and Class descriptions

Beginners Information

When people come by the studio or call, we find that the most frequently asked questions are from NEW students who are unsure how to get started. It's really easy! You are welcome to drop in on any of our classes anytime. Just arrive 10-15 minutes early so that we have a chance to get you set up. Our studio is fully equipped with yoga mats and props. We also have yoga mats and props for sale, should you choose to purchase your own.

Several classes each week are especially for beginners and for students recently returning to yoga: Tuesday at 12:00 PM with Elizabeth; Tuesday at 7:15 PM with Deb; and Sunday at 11:00 AM with Carol.

In addition to the classes designated for beginners, most of our classes are appropriate for beginners. All of our multi-level teachers have experience with new students. Take a look at the schedule on the website and come to any class that says Beginner, Restorative, Gentle, or Multi-Level and give it a try. As for the cost, it is $15 to drop in for most classes (most classes are 90 minutes long), $12 for the midday classes (they are shorter at 1 hour and 15 minutes).

When you are ready to commit to more classes, there are 10- Class Coupon Packages as well as 3-Month Passes for those who come to class more frequently.

If you have specific questions about our classes, please feel free to call the studio at 609.924.7751.

Namaste, Carol, David, and Nagisa

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Class Descriptions

Iyengar Yoga* is based on the principles of B.K.S. Iyengar. Iyengar classes work systematically to help students understand the principles of alignment in poses. These classes emphasize precision and body awareness and use props such as blocks and straps to facilitate movement into the poses. *Taught by a certified Iyengar teacher.

Classical Yoga, like Iyengar yoga, emphasizes patient inquiry, precise alignment, and playful exploration in the practice of asana. Both of these styles of yoga approach the asana as an opportunity for new learning, greater awareness, and a more profound integration of body, mind, and breath.

Hatha Yoga is a general term for the practice of yoga poses. Hatha yoga classes may incorporate elements of different styles into one class.

Hatha Flow / Vinyasa Flow refers to Hatha yoga classes in which one moves fluidly from pose to pose. These classes may move a little more quickly than non-flow classes.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is Yoga?
Yoga is an ancient Indian tradition dedicated to developing the body and mind. The word "yoga" means "yoke" or "union" and reflects this tradition’s emphasis on uniting and harmonizing the body, the breath, and the mind. The practice of Yoga helps the practitioner to develop optimal health, strength, and flexibility so as to free the mind.

What benefits can I expect from practicing yoga?
Within a very short time of beginning a yoga practice, you can expect to notice improvements in your flexibility, strength, and stamina. You may also find that various aches and pains you have routinely experienced (such as an achy back or pain in your wrists) begin to diminish. Many people also notice increased feelings of calm and well being and a better ability to concentrate.

Why are there so many different kinds of yoga?
The tradition of Hatha Yoga has developed into numerous schools of yoga, many of which have become popular in the United States. As the practice of yoga continues to evolve, new schools of yoga with new names appear. Some of the most commonly taught types in the U.S. are Iyengar Yoga, which emphasizes precision of alignment, Ashtanga Yoga (sometimes called "Power Yoga"), which features vigorous sequences of movement, and Kripalu Yoga and Integral Yoga, which emphasize integration of movement and breath. While the emphasis in these forms of yoga differs to some extent, they all have the same ultimate purpose to promote health, awareness, and equanimity.

Is yoga a religion?
No. Yoga developed out of and alongside Hinduism in ancient India and also has influenced and been influenced by Buddhism and Jainism. But yoga is not itself a religion: it does not entail belief in any doctrines or deities. Yoga encourages each person to explore his or her own experience to discover what is true and what works. Yoga teachers differ widely in the extent to which they incorporate such elements as chanting and meditation into their teaching, so spiritual practices do form some part of many yoga classes. The freeing of the human spirit, in its broadest sense, is the goal of all yoga but spiritual principles may be either implicit or explicit in a given teacher’s approach to teaching.

Who can do yoga? Can I come to class if I have health concerns or limititations?
Virtually anyone can do and benefit from yoga, though different kinds of yoga are appropriate for different people. Those who are already fit and energetic will find in yoga a way to develop their physical potential further than ever before, but people of any age can do yoga and people with even serious adverse physical conditions (such as MS, arthritis, fibromyalgia, and cancer) can benefit from yoga that is appropriately tailored for their needs. You do not have to be flexible in order to practice yoga. A responsible yoga teacher will always encourage you to modify the postures to work for your body. Each body has its own strengths and its own challenges. Yoga helps us to develop the former and work wisely with the latter. Please remember to tell your teacher of your condition or limitation before class. Teachers are trained to modify, eliminate, and suggest alternate strategies to enable you to practce safely and intelligently.
Yoga is open to all people of all ages and levels of physical condition. Do not be put off from trying a yoga class because you feel that you are too old, too stiff, too fat, too thin, too tired, etc. Yoga is a process-oriented activity with something for everyone.

Would children benefit from doing yoga?
For children, yoga is an exciting, non-competitive, interactive and relaxing form of exercise. It promotes body awareness and interest in self-healthy. It helps children develop and maintain correct breathing and flexible and energetic bodies with good posture and muscular coordination. Besides the physical benefits, yoga works well in the area of cerebral well being. The children are encouraged to interact with one another, exchange ideas and experiment with innovative approaches to activities.

Last Modified: February 25, 2013