Why Yoga?

The practice of yoga involves the physical, mental and spiritual spheres of the human being. On the physical level the body responds positively with better health, improved posture, balance and flexibility, and increased strength and stamina. On the mental level the results are also positive: a sense of well-being, improved self-esteem and heightened awareness are among the many benefits experienced. With more established and regular practice a student will naturally deepen their relationship with yoga, with themselves and with the world around them.

The Wheel Padmasana in trees


Types of Yoga

Like different paths to the top of the mountain, yoga has varied styles all leading in the same direction.

Iyengar Yoga

Iyengar yoga is named after an Indian yogi, BKS Iyengar, who is a renowned master practitioner and teacher of yoga in the modern day. He taught his students to pay particular attention to the detail of asana practice, encouraged them in the art of posture alignment and advocated the use of props as aids to their yoga practice with regard to safety. Many established yoga centres carry his name. His teacher training programme and teachers who qualify are highly regarded and respected. In his early nineties, Mr Iyengar continues to maintain a daily yoga practice.

Ashtanga Yoga

The Ashtanga yoga tradition was resurrected by Pattabbhi Jois. Its origin is credited to Patanjali, a sage who lived over two thousand years ago. Like his contemporary Mr Iyengar, Pattabbhi Jois was an inspiration to the students he taught, who came from all parts of the world to learn from him. The Ashtanga system uses a flowing sequence of postures (asanas) which are practiced in synchronisation with inhalation and exhalation. The combination of these two is known as vinyasa. Each complete sequence, from beginner to advanced, contains many vinyasa. Together with the application of muscular techniques (locks), the practice increases the body's internal heat which stimulates a detoxing effect through persperation and respiration. It also improves levels of concentration.

site by Nick Long of Somerset Yoga