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Enlightened Asana

Series II

Enlightened Asana workshops - series II

A new series of workshops to delve deeper into our practice.

Yoga karmasu kausalam (Yoga is skill in action) 'Bhagavad Gita'

It is not what we do that becomes yoga, but rather the way we do it. One might perform an asana that is wholly devoid of skill or beauty. Conversely, a simple sidewalk stroll may be infused with sublime beauty and masterful skill. What makes the difference is our state of mind - it alone determines whether an action is ‘yoga’ or mere movement.
— Dona Holleman

The human body is a living organism logically designed and evolved for locomotion. The yoga asana (postures)  must enhance the body's inherent movement, function and form. The asana needs to serve the body and not the other way around. What may look a visually 'impressive' posture is not a measure of the 'true' posture.

The asana (form) is similar in all yoga systems. What differentiates it is the approach. 

Learning how to initiate movement from the energy/subtle body can bring greater consciousness, grace, vitally and wholeness to a posture - our practice becomes much richer.

Working through a full range of classical postures, we will explore principles of rooting, anatomical precision and alignment, 'not doing', hara (energy centre), elongation, intension, gravity, awareness and breathing practices, to experience the asana from a fresh perspective.

> Learn correct technique, alignment and application of the main asana sets.
> Explore new principles and practices to enrich the asana. 
 > Find your true posture.

Suitable for all levels (except complete beginners).

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1. Standing Poses - the blueprint for all asana

Sunday, October 7, 2018 / 9am - 12.30pm

Standing postures strengthen the legs and ankles and bring flexibility to the hip joints. They prepare the body for more difficult positions. Whether we are forward bending, back bending, twisting or inverting, the legs are instrumental to the asana. They complete the energetic circuitry of the posture. Standing postures help us to condition the legs and bring more consciousness into both our physical and subtle anatomy.

2. The architecture of backward bendings

Sunday, November 4, 2018 / 9am - 12.30pm

Backbends are complex. Backbends are constructed dependent on where you start. They are built from 4 different positions: Supine, prone, vertical and inverted. Each has its own construction. 

Most spinal injury in yoga is either in the lumber or cervical regions. In backbends, people who have very mobile lumbers often over use the lumber area. To some it may look like an impressive bend but in reality it is crunching the spine. It is devoid of elegance. Simply moving into an area of least resistance is not yoga (or good for the body!). In fact those with a very mobile lumber need to work much harder in backbends to stabilise it and re-train the body to backbend correctly.

In this workshop we will work through simple backbends and a few more complex poses to understand exactly how they should be constructed. We will look at the technical application, anatomy and movement of the body as well as other practices to enhance such asanas.

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3. Forward bendings & twistings

Sunday, December 2, 2018 / 9am - 12.30pm

The next asana focus is seated forward bends and twistings. This asana set is one of my most enjoyable sets to practice as my current study has revolutionised how I approach them. Similarly to backward bends, the movement of the spine and body is often misunderstood in such asana and incorrectly practiced. Using technical application and engaging both the physical and subtle anatomy of the body, we can experience these postures safely and from a fresh perspective. It does NOT matter how much flexibility you have...

4. Inversions

Sunday, January 20, 2019 / 9am - 12.30pm

We revisit head balance and shoulder balance technique as well as additional variations. We will also look at preparatory practices and application of handstand and full arm balance...

Head balance (Sirsasana) in the classical texts is often refereed to as the king of asanas. It was recommended as a daily practice to help keep the body healthy, full of vitality and youthful. On a biochemical level, some benefits of an inverted body include bringing more fresh blood to the brain, relief to the heart muscles as a natural gravitational force draws the blood out of the legs, and relief for the veins. It's a practice that brings great benefit to the whole body system.

If our asana time is limited head balance, together with shoulder balance (Savangasana), should take priority over other postures.

Full inversions workshop details here.

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Teacher: Rory Viggers

"My current study of yoga asana and movement revolves around the Centered Yoga system developed by pioneering world leading facilitator, Dona Holleman. She is globally regarded as one of the best asana teachers. Her 50 years of practice (and up to 8 hours a day of asana practice) has helped her to perfect the asana. Having studied with Dona for the past four years, her philosophy, teaching methods and knowledge of the physical and subtle bodies form the inspiration of these workshops. I practice yoga asana daily (between 2.5 to 4 hours) to really learn the essence of the posture".

Information

The workshops are suitable for all levels (except for complete beginners). Each workshop is structured as a stand alone format. 

The workshops run for 3.5 hours.

Yoga mats and equipment will be provided (feel free to bring your own mat).

Cost: 
£35 (£29 early bird booking) per workshop
2 x Workshops: £55 (save £15)
4 x Workshops: £99 (save £40)
(If booking 2 workshops, please list on the booking form which dates you would like to attend)

Yogakutir members can use class card credits towards workshops - please enquire here

10% discount available for students and concessions - please enquire here.


Enlightened Asana Workshop Series II - dates:
1. Standing Poses - the blueprint for all asana (7th October)
2. The architecture of backward bendings (4th November)
3. Forward bends and twistings (2nd December)
4. Inversions (20th January)

Location:
Clifton Library, 13 Princess Victoria Street, Clifton, Bristol, BS83BX

Time:
9am - 12.30pm

Testimonials 

"Rory is one of the best teachers in Bristol, by regularly attending his classes I have been able to achieve a moving meditative experience that has inspired me to continue to grow and develop my own practise. Rory is committed to continually develop and share a depth of knowledge that continues to inspire. Thank you"

"Following a move to Clifton I joined classes following a recommendation from a friend who regularly attended Yogakutir, which speaks volumes in itself and it certainly did not disappoint. I was looking for more than just a regular yoga practice and this has been expertly delivered and further enhanced after attending focused workshops with Rory & a retreat with Dory over the last year. The years of experience & knowledge both share during each practice provided the therapy I needed - as of course yoga is far more than postures on a mat.  Yogakutir has actually changed my life and I very much look forward to continuing my journey in the coming years with their guidance & support - and they are both so lovely with it too"

"My Tuesday early morning yoga class with Rory is the highlight of my week. Its a fantastic way to start my day. I've learnt not just yoga practices but breathing techniques. Each week is different and I can't recommend the class enough."

"I love Rory's no-nonsense, gentle approach and I always leave feeling peaceful and energised at the same time."

"Rory's class on a Sunday evening is my anchor point for each week. The asanas are challenging and the relaxation is incredible. I look forward to the class immensely and feel the benefit all week - the best thing I do for me!"

"I enjoy Rory’s classes so much that if I had to move out of the area, I would find a way to get back to Clifton at least once a week."

"Rory's yoga classes are excellent. I really appreciate the variation in sequences from class to class, and Rory's attention to detail and ability to describe poses and movements. Rory, you are an inspiring yoga teacher!"

"I try to get to Rory's class every week. The practice is different each time, and I like the way he breaks things down to help with a physical understanding of the postures."

"Thank you for some wonderful classes, I feel I learn something new each time I'm at class. This is prob the most technical yoga I've done and I'm really enjoying it."