Hatha Yoga is a classical style of yoga which cultivates deeper awareness of the poses, attention to alignment, understanding of breathing techniques, and exploration of the mind as well as of the body. This style of Yoga is the most widely practiced form in the world. Hatha Yoga uses postures (asana) and conscious breathing (Pranayama) to combine with mental focus and develop awareness, strength and flexibility, relaxation, and mindfulness.
Hatha Yoga Flow classes incorporate traditional Hatha Yoga with a beautiful flow of movement from one posture to the next, creating a meditative flow of sequencing whilst using the breath.
Today, the need for restorative yoga couldn’t be greater. Sometimes in life we need to take a step back and relax our bodies and minds. During the practice of restorative Yoga we learn the art of resting with awareness by supporting the body so you can hold poses for longer, allowing the body to open through a series of passive stretching.
When we rest with awareness, we notice areas of tension that we were unaware of and as a consequence, all of the organ systems of the body are benefited. A few of the measurable results of deep relaxation are the reduction of blood pressure, the increase of the “good cholesterol” levels, as well as improvement in digestion, fertility, elimination, the reduction of muscle tension, insomnia and generalised fatigue, and also depression.
Restorative Yoga class movements will be gentle, settling into seated poses for a prolonged amount of time with the support of numerous props to ensure you are stable and comfortable. A still body does not mean a quiet mind, the real yoga comes when the mind reflects the pose, allowing yourself to cultivate inner peace.
Prenatal Yoga offers tremendous benefits to women though every phase of pregnancy. Many women can experience changes physically, emotionally and mentally during this magical time. On a physical level, yoga helps a woman to build and maintain her strength, stamina and flexibility while at the same time helping to alleviate the discomforts such as lower back pain, swelling and fatigue.
Because of the hormonal changes taking place, women can also feel very emotional and it can also be common to experience mood swings or feel overly sensitive. Practising yoga helps to balance the endocrine system, and this can leave practitioners with a sense of well being and ease within themselves.
On a mental level, students will often experience feelings of anxiety when thinking about labor and childbirth. The meditative aspects of yoga help to calm the mind when anxiety-producing thoughts arise.
By practising yoga throughout her pregnancy, a woman is also preparing for labor and childbirth. The strength gained through yoga asana will help her endure the physical demands of labor. Yoga’s breath awareness and pranayama techniques can also be used as a coping mechanism during and in between contractions.
Integrating yoga’s meditative practices can encourage a women to stay present. Being present allows her to work with her body and can help labour to progress, decreasing the possibility of a prolonged labour.