What is Mysore?
Mysore, named for Mysore, India where Sri K. Pattabhi Jois lived, is a self‐paced class allowing students to receive individual instruction while learning the Ashtanga yoga practice. All levels are welcome from new beginners to advanced practitioners looking to deepen their understanding of the practice. In the beginning, new students receive more attention. As they become familiar with the practice, they are allowed more independence, getting adjustments and assistance only when needed.
How is Mysore‐style different from other led classes?
Since Mysore class is self‐paced, students are not limited to the pace and rhythm of a led class or an instructor. While led classes are a great way to learn about the breath and vinyasa, Mysore‐style is where you follow your own breath to deepen your focus and meditation skills. In a led class, you may just skim over a new or difficult pose, but the Mysore style provides a unique opportunity to work one‐on‐one with the teacher to progress and experience the benefits of yoga practice. The Ashtanga system is not complete without incorporating both styles of learning. Typically, Ashtanga is practiced six days a week, with 1‐2 of the classes being led.
Do I need to know the sequence before coming to a Mysore‐style class?
Absolutely not! Mysore class is where students are meant to learn the series. The teacher will guide you through the series pose‐by‐pose; teaching Surya Namaskara first and leading each student through the practice based on their personal needs.
I’m not flexible, can I still do Yoga?
YES!!!!! This is why you should do yoga!! Yoga is for all people, and one of the many benefits of a yoga practice is increased flexibility which can lead to less pain, more mobility and increased health throughout the body.
How much time should I expect for my first class? What is the typical length of a Mysore class?
In your first class, you will learn the basic techniques for breathing and movement (often referred to as vinyasa) – and be guided through the opening and closing sequences of the Ashtanga Yoga practice. Your first practice may only be 20 to 30 minutes long and will gradually build to an hour and a half. As long as you leave enough time to finish your full practice, you can come to Mysore class at any point.
Adding postures one at a time, is the safest and most effective way to learn allowing you to gain proficiency in that posture before advancing to the next. As you gain strength, stamina, and flexibility, poses are added onto the sequence. Undertaking a new posture before you are ready may lead to injury or imbalance in the body. For that reason, students are taught little-by-little and at a rate appropriate for each person individually. In subsequent classes, new postures will be added to what was learned. Thus, over time, the length of your practice will gradually increase according to your ability.
Why practice with a consistent, qualified teacher?
Ashtanga yoga is founded on the concept of parampara meaning knowledge passed from student to teacher. Our teachers have committed themselves to the instruction of Ashtanga yoga as originally transmitted by Shri K. Pattabhi Jois in Mysore, India, and make yearly trips to India to continue their studies.
Finding a consistent, qualified teacher is important as it is difficult to judge your own progress. An impartial and knowledgeable teacher is better suited to help you determine when you are ready for the next posture. The teacher provides guidance on how to approach the practice in safe manner by offering experience from their own daily practice. In addition, the teacher can help to hold you accountable and encourage you to work at your full potential.
Why do you offer classes so early in the morning?
In the early morning, sattva guna is most prevalent lending to an ideal time for a meditative practice. At this hour, the mind is alert, focused, and peaceful. The stillness and calmness of your inner being is mirrored by the outside world. Waking early in the morning also helps to maintain good health.
Not a morning person? We have daily, evening classes as well to accommodate everyone's schedule.
How Many Days a Week Should You Practice?
Ideally, practicing five to six days per week is recommended, even at the beginning, taking only a few days off per week to allow the body to rest (traditionally, women rest for 3 days during menstruation). If possible, your practice should be at the same time every day. You will appreciate the routine and respond better to the practice. Although you may find that you are a little sore in the beginning, the regularity of a daily practice removes the soreness in the muscles and invigorates the body each day. If a daily commitment to the practice is not possible, many benefits can still be found practicing a few times a week. Please come to practice as you are able. All are welcome!