Yoga is more than a physical exercise. It is a mind-body practice. Yoga means “union” and leads to an integration of mind and body.
Yoga facilitates change based on the principles of reflection, integration and awakening. Central to the practice is vision and transformation. There are many aspects to yoga. The yoga most commonly referred to and taught in most yoga classes is the physical practice of yoga, or hatha yoga. Hatha yoga traditionally consists of practising physical postures (referred to as asanas). There are many different asanas (postures), some are practised while standing, others when seated. Another aspect of yoga is pranayama (working with the breath) which are exercises which work on breathing. There are now a multitude of different styles of hatha yoga being taught. Classes at Yoga Point:
Accessible Yoga / Yoga for Mobility and Strength
This class is designed to promote improved mobility and strength for living well daily. The classes include mindfulness and relaxation as well as yoga postures, with modifications where needed. Yinka’s classes are suitable for anyone who wants to improve their health and wellbeing; including those with muscle and joint pain, back pain and arthritis. This class is also good for who feel they would like to learn more about their body and develop a yoga practice which will improve strength and balance as well as flexibility. There is an option to use a chair if needed.
Bodypositive yoga is about making yoga accessible for all. It is a belief that everyBODY is a yoga body. The goal is to inspire individuals, regardless of their size, shape, gender, ethnicity or level of ability to experience yoga and its numerous benefits. Donna Noble is a passionate advocate of body positive yoga, working to make yoga more accessible and diverse.
Hatha yoga is a very broad term referring to the physical yoga practice, as such all the various yoga practised at Yoga Point could fall within ‘hatha yoga’. In recent times ‘hatha yoga’ has come to mean classes that are relatively slow and gentle in comparison to the generally faster paced vinyasa classes, however one hatha class can vary greatly in comparison to another.
In this class we gracefully weave the asanas (postures) together, orchestrated by the breath to build stamina and flexibility. This class will release tension from the body, improve your posture and leave you feeling stronger and more energised.
This style of yoga was developed by B.K.S. Iyengar in India. It is a system of yoga where some time is spent in each asana (pose) and it is explored, a precise alignment of the body is focussed on. Often supports eg, bolsters, blocks, chairs etc. are used, to help people work towards achieving the final shape of the pose.
Iyengar teachers have to complete a rigorous two year programme to become introductory teachers. In order to be accepted on to the teacher training programme they need to have been attending Iyengar yoga classes for a minimum of 3 years and to be competent in the basic asanas and have a good understanding of the yoga system.
Mum & baby (postnatal) yoga
This postnatal yoga class is on Fridays at 11:30. It is focused on the importance of your postnatal recovery. It includes gentle stretching and strengthening the body, exercises to improve posture, breathing and relaxation techniques to promote inner calm, songs and gentle movements to bond with the baby. Postnatal yoga can definitely help with your postnatal recovery as well as being a lovely place to meet new mums.
You may begin this class after your 6-8 week postnatal check up and continue until your baby is crawling!
Pregnancy (ante-natal) yoga
Theresa Aldridge teaches our pregnancy yoga class on Sundays at 18:30. No previous experience of yoga is necessary for this class. As long as you are 12+ weeks pregnant you are welcome to drop in but if you have any questions or complications please contact Theresa directly: email@example.com There are some daytime classes you can attend when pregnant please email firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
This is a more passive style of yoga, postures are held for a much longer period of time and props (bolsters, blocks etc.) are used to support the body. This can be very good to help reduce stress.
Vajrasati Yoga was founded by Jim Tarran. It is a straightforward practice of Modern Postural Yoga i.e. body work. Interwoven into the practice of the asanas is the spirit of the yoga movement as it has come down to us through its various influences such as Tantra, Raja, Advaita Vedanta and Buddhism. This is done through the tone of the relationship with the practice and through the central premise embodied in the word yoga itself; that the breath, body, mind, heart, energy are inseparable parts of one whole experience that has at its heart freedom, joy, wisdom, and bliss. The classes integrate movement, breath, philosophy and humour in a way that leaves you feeling lighter, refreshed and revitalised.
In this style of yoga, movement is synchronised with the breath, so the class can feel like a moving meditation. A general level of fitness is required as the movements can be relatively fast between postures and this is maintained throughout the class.
Vinyasa / Flow
Vinyasa classes are defined by movement timed with the breath. However, Vinyasa is quite a broad term and these classes can cary in terms of the pace of the class and the postures practiced. It is best to look up the teacher taking the class in order to get more of a sense of how the class will be. These classes do require a general level of fitness as there is movement between the postures (asanas) which can be relatively fast.
This class is a meditative combination of flowing yang (active) postures and yin (floor-based passive) postures accessing the body’s deep connective tissues and connecting the breath with mindful movement. The intention of this yin and yang flow is to create more space and integrity in the body, finding ease and release while cultivating more mind/body awareness.
Yin yoga is a slow form of yoga where the asanas (poses) are held for several minutes. It originated in China and focuses on improving the flow of qi through the body. It is quite a meditative form of yoga and aims to cultivate awareness of the inner silence.
Yoga for older bodies
Anyone is welcome to attend this class but it is a class where older people can feel confident to come and along and learn / practice yoga in a supportive environment. As there is no age specified on the class sometimes people are not sure about attending, so it can be thought of as a “yoga for over fifties” class but as stated above, anybody is welcome to come and try it. And people over fifty are welcome to attend our other classes, as many do.
Yoga nidra is also called yogic sleep. It is practised lying down and consists of guided meditation. While deeply relaxed the inner world becomes more available. We have regular workshops with Georgina Evans and Paula Hines that include yoga nidra at Yoga Point Brixton.