Breathing in I calm my body. Breathing out I smile. Dwelling in the present moment, I know this is a wonderful moment.
Thich Nhat Hanh
As we first shared our new “baby’, Heart of the Village Yoga Studio, with the community last week, I was approached by various people who wondered what type of yoga we teach. It made me pause and recognize how yoga has evolved here in the United States over the past 25 years.
Yoga has developed from an unfamiliar practice that was allocated to community basements and an underground communication system in the seventies to a buzzword in our current culture. These days, there is an abundance of yoga. There is Ashtanga yoga, Hatha yoga, Iyengar yoga, Bikram yoga, Kundalini yoga, Vinyasa yoga, Anusara yoga, Jivamukti yoga, and Yin yoga. Are you confused yet? There is also Kripalu yoga, Hot yoga, Power yoga, Sivananda yoga and Restorative yoga. All of this has made the idea of practicing yoga a bit intimidating!
Even the most seasoned practitioners wonder what they will encounter at the start of a new yoga class. For someone who has never tried yoga it can keep them away.
When yoga was originally created, its primary purpose was to foster spiritual enlightenment. The word “yoga” is an ancient Indian Sanskrit word that means “Union “and refers to the yogi’s quest to attain wholeness by uniting the mind and body.
At Heart of the Village Yoga, Jo and I hope to create a place where everyone feels welcome. We understand the importance of coming into a comfortable place and celebrating the fact that each person’s body and ability is different and unique. We believe that everyone will benefit from the simple practice of focusing on his or her own inhalation and exhalation in movement or by being still. We combine focused breathing, yoga poses, and present moment awareness, with a compassionate, accessible approach. So come and experience yoga, create your own unique practice, experience the “Union” and the magic of stillness.
By Andrea Ross