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  • Mysore Style Ashtanga Yoga

    February 03, 2024 4 min read

    Mysore Style Ashtanga Yoga: A Comprehensive Guide for Beginners

    Feburary 3rd, 2024 Author: Victoria Maybee - Yoga

    Yoga, with its roots deeply embedded in ancient Indian traditions, has evolved into a global phenomenon, celebrated for its holistic benefits encompassing both physical vitality and mental equilibrium. Among the various styles of yoga, Ashtanga yoga stands out for its dynamic and structured sequences. Mysore style Ashtanga yoga, in particular, offers a unique and personalized approach to practice, making it an ideal choice for beginners seeking a transformative journey into yoga.

    Understanding Ashtanga Yoga:

    Ashtanga Yoga, often referred to as the "eight-limbed path," is a systemized form of yoga that incorporates a set sequence of postures linked together by breath and movement. Developed by the legendary teacher Sri K. Pattabhi Jois, this style emphasizes the synchronization of breath (pranayama) with a progressive series of postures (asanas) to create a moving meditation.

    Mysore Style Ashtanga Yoga takes its name from the city of Mysore in Karnataka, India, where Pattabhi Jois taught for many years. Unlike led classes where everyone moves together, Mysore classes are self-paced, allowing practitioners to move through the series at their own rhythm, under the guidance of a teacher.

     

    Ashtanga Yogs
    Understanding Ashstanga Yoga

    Start with a Guided Ashtanga Yoga Class:

    Before diving into Mysore Style Ashtanga Yoga, it's crucial to find a certified and experienced teacher. Look for instructors who have completed the rigorous Ashtanga Yoga teacher training and have a deep understanding of the Mysore method.

    Understanding the Mysore Format:

    Mysore style Ashtanga yoga classes typically operate in an open format, meaning students arrive at their convenience and practice the sequence at their own pace. The teacher provides individual adjustments, assistance, and new postures as the student progresses. This personalized attention allows beginners to build a strong foundation gradually.

    Commit to a Regular Practice:

    Consistency is key in Ashtanga Yoga. Start with a commitment to practice at least three times a week. Over time, as the body adapts and strength develops, practitioners can gradually increase the frequency and duration of their practice.

    The Structure of a Mysore Class:

    Sun Salutations (Surya Namaskara):

    The practice begins with a series of Sun Salutations, which warm up the body and synchronize breath with movement. These sequences are the foundation for the rest of the practice.

    Standing Sequence:

    The practice then moves into a series of standing postures that focus on strength, balance, and flexibility. These postures are repeated in each practice to build a strong physical and mental foundation.

    Primary Series (Yoga Chikitsa):

    The heart of the Ashtanga Yoga system is the Primary Series, also known as Yoga Chikitsa, which means "yoga therapy." This series focuses on detoxifying and aligning the body, purifying the nervous system, and building strength. Beginners start with the Primary Series and progress to more advanced series as they gain proficiency.

    Finishing Sequence:

    The practice concludes with a set of finishing postures that cool down the body and prepare it for relaxation. This sequence includes inversions and seated poses, promoting a sense of calm and balance.

    Sun Salutations Yoga

    Benefits of Mysore Style Ashtanga Yoga:

    Mysore style Ashtanga Yoga places a strong emphasis on the connection

    Between breath and movement. As practitioners navigate through the sequence at their own pace, they develop a heightened sense of body awareness. This increased awareness extends beyond the physical postures to include the subtleties of breath control and the overall energy flow within the body.

    Encourages Self-Reflection and Inner Growth:

    The self-paced nature of Mysore Style allows practitioners to engage in a more introspective and meditative practice. With the absence of external distractions and the guidance of a knowledgeable teacher, students are encouraged to turn their attention inward. This introspection becomes a powerful tool for self-reflection and personal growth. As individuals progress through the series, they may encounter physical and mental challenges. These challenges provide opportunities for self-discovery, resilience, and the development of a positive mindset.

    Builds Discipline and Focus:

    The structured nature of Ashtanga Yoga, coupled with the self-paced Mysore format, fosters discipline and concentration. Practitioners develop a focused mind, enhanced awareness of breath, and improved mental clarity.

    Progress at Your Own Pace:

    Unlike led classes where everyone follows the same pace, Mysore Style empowers beginners to progress at their own speed. This approach ensures that each practitioner is challenged appropriately, fostering a gradual and sustainable advancement in the practice.

    Mysore Style Ashtanga Yoga offers a transformative journey for beginners seeking a disciplined and personalized approach to yoga. With its roots in tradition and the guidance of a certified teacher, practitioners can embark on a path of self-discovery, physical strength, and mental well-being. By committing to regular practice and embracing the unique structure of Mysore classes, beginners can unlock the numerous benefits of Ashtanga Yoga and lay the foundation for a lifelong yoga journey.

     


    Expert Thoughts

    Victoria Maybee - Mukha yoga

    Victoria is a travelling 500 RYT who provides vinyasa flow, restorative and yin yoga classes. She is currently working as a freelance copywriter and social media manager, and seeking teaching opportunities everywhere she goes. After obtaining her Journalism degree at Carleton University in Canada, she followed her free spirit and moved to Australia.

    Author Victoria Maybee  Category: Yoga Date: 02/03/2024

    All Rights Reserved @2024

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