The Integral Yoga we teach has its roots in a system of yoga that was instigated by Swami Sivananda. It is an integration of practices derived from the Tantra and Vedanta philosophies of yoga.
In the 1940’s, Swami Sivananda (1887 – 1963) of Rishikesh, instructed his disciples to integrate the practical aspects of Yoga as they were found in the ancient scriptures (1). Amalgamating the concepts from the North and Southern schools of Yoga.
One of his direct disciples, Sri Swami Satyananda Saraswati (1923-2009) was given the mandate of taking yoga “from door to door and from shore to shore”.
Sri Swami Satyananda was a pioneer in bringing these ancient yogic practices and making them more accessible for the modern-day practitioner. He simplified and systemised the practices so that they could benefit everyone.
The main focus in our classes is on the cultivation of awareness or mindfulness.
For example, when practising the physical postures, we encourage students (where possible) to practise with their eyes closed, so that they can really feel into their own body and listen to the information their body is giving them. For this system of yoga, it’s not about achieving a particular physical outcome or aesthetic. We discourage competition and students from pushing themselves beyond their capabilities.
Traditionally a 90-minute class will comprise of approximately:
- 40 to 55 minutes of asana (the physical postures)
- 10 to 15 minutes of pranayama (breath work)
- 15 to 25 minutes meditation / relaxation
More advanced or progressive classes may also include mudras (body gestures) and bandhas (energetic body locks).
What defines this style of yoga is that the teacher rarely will demonstrate or practise with the student. There is no physical contact or physical adjustment to any postures during class. Instructions and adjustments are given verbally. Demonstrations are generally only used when the practice is new, or if the verbal queues are not working.
The reason for this is to assist students in keeping their focus internalised. And to avoid moving into comparisons or judgements the student may cast between themselves and the way the teacher may be doing a pose.
It is also important for the teacher to observe the students during the class.
Our classes are suitable for students from absolute beginners to experienced practitioners.
All classes will include pranayama (breathing practices) and meditation / Yoga Nidra. It is these components and the way we practise asana that makes this system of yoga ideal for managing the symptoms of stress and anxiety.
Because the emphasis of our classes is on the cultivation of awareness. The practises become very adaptable, so we are able to adjust to cater for students of all different ages and capabilities. Including those who are recovering from illness.
For a more in-depth look at this system of yoga, please follow this link.
We offer classes taught in English, Catalan and Spanish. As well as classes taught in studios, we also offer classes online.
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