Ashtanga Yoga Napa Valley is Napa's first and only Traditional Ashtanga Yoga Studio offering Mysore method Ashtanga as well as Led classes. We are committed to transmitting the teachings of Ashtanga Yoga as taught by Paramaraguru, Sharath Jois of the Sri. K Pattabhi Jois Ashtanga Yoga Institute in Mysore India.
What is Mysore Ashtanga?
Mysore Method Ashtanga Yoga is a traditional and sacred practice of teaching Yoga to an individual in a manner appropriate for their mind and body at any given time. Students practice along side fellow practitioners in the same room, however each student moves at their own pace. Students are given individual attention and instruction by the teacher so they may learn and adapt to the practice at a pace that promotes health and sustainability.
How to start a Mysore Practice.
No experience is necessary to start a practice! Your first few weeks of practice, you may feel a little uncomfortable, intimidated or overwhelmed, but understand that’s completely normal and everyone (even the most advanced practitioners) go through this process. With consistent attendance and dedication to practice you will start to look forward to the energy and challenge of the room.
For the first practice we will give you a moment to set up your mat and observe the room, tempering your energy to the space. We will assess any injuries or limitations that you may be concerned about, and then begin by teaching you the first sequence ,which is Surya Namaskara A or Sun Salutations. Once you have the first sequence memorized, we will leave you to practice for a few rounds on your own. As you begin to feel grounded and confident in the first sequence, we will build upon what you have learned gradually increasing the length and challenge of your practice. Each day you return to your practice we will be there to teach you, support you, offer healthy adjustments and suggestions and give you space to observe your mind and body as it moves back into balance.
Unlike most Yoga classes, you have the opportunity to move at your own pace. We will never ask you to move into postures that your mind and body are not ready for. Over time, the goal is that you become independent so that you may practice Yoga in and out of the shala, allowing the subtle benefits of Yoga begin to emerge creating equilibrium in the many layers of our complicated modern lives.
When to come.
For your first few practices, you can expect to be at the shala for a minimum of 45 minutes, gradually increasing up to 90 minutes. Because you may arrive at your leisure within the times posted below, you can fit your practice into your daily schedule as you see fit. We recommend that all students commit to a minimum practice of 3 days per week. Most students practice between 4 and 6 days.
Students may arrive to the shala anytime between:
- 5:30am and 8:30am Monday - Thursday
- 5:00pm and 6:00pm Monday - Thursday
- 7:00am - 8:30am Sunday
What is a Led Class?
A Led class is a setting where all students practice together following the pacing and instruction of the teacher. Led classes are taught by using the Sanskrit names of the postures and their associated vinyasa count, also spoken in Sanskrit. A Led class is a compliment to a regular Mysore practice. Students with little or no experience of the series in a Mysore setting may find the Led class to be extremely challenging and at times unable to sustain the strength and stamina that is required. A regular Mysore practice is highly recommended before attempting a Full Led Class. Led classes are offered on FRIDAYS at 5:30am (Full), 7:30am (Half) and 6:00pm (Half)
What is the Primary Series?
Every student starting a Mysore Ashtanga practice regardless of experience starts by learning The Primary Series or Yoga Chikitsa. Yoga Chikitsa means Yoga Therapy. The Primary Series is an intelligent sequence of postures designed to strengthen and purify the body and mind. The Primary Series will reintroduce natural range of motion in the joints of the body increasing mobility, aid in purifying the body through internal cleansing of the organs, muscles and connective tissue, and will increase strength of both body and mind through breathing, moving, and concentrating. Students learn the series in a progressive manner through individual guidance and instruction from the teacher. The teacher will teach the series at a pace that is appropriate for the student to adapt and become proficient in foundational postures before adding subsequent postures that increase in challenge.
Who can practice Ashtanga Yoga?
Anyone can practice this method of Yoga. Because it involves a direct teacher student relationship or Parampara, our teachers will meet each individual student exactly where they are. Students should come with a sense of curiosity, a willingness to surrender to the method, and the desire to bring transformation into their lives.