Reading's Ashtanga Yoga Community
Styles of Yoga
Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga
Ashtanga is a dynamic, flowing practice, characterised by its use of the ‘vinyasa’, or a ‘special link’, which connects each posture to the next in one smooth movement, in synchronization with the breath.
This marriage of breath and movement is the essence of ashtanga vinyasa. The heat created detoxifies the body and gives a great all round cardiovascular exercise; building strength, stamina, flexibility and tone.
While ashtanga is often seen as a more dynamic, challenging form of yoga, in reality anybody with an average level of fitness can do it.
With practice the strength and flexibility will come.
You can download the Ashtanga Primary Series Instructional card below
Preview the card by CLICKING HERE
You may notice that some of our classes are ‘Self Practice’. This is the traditional way of practising yoga from teacher to student.
You will begin to learn the Primary Series step by step. At your own level. In a typical Ashtanga Self Practice class there will be students of all levels and abilities practicing together. This means you develop your practice at a pace suitable to you.
We regularly hold Beginners Courses. If you are new to yoga this course is essential and a great introduction to the ashtanga yoga practice.
Mysore style is a self paced yoga practice where you work in relationship with your teacher. You will learn the system at your own pace with guidance and support. This is the best way to learn Ashtanga Yoga.
Rather than being led through the sequence, you will be aided in memorising the poses over time, cultivating a consistent practice, and practicing independently. New poses will be added gradually. Your class time will vary depending on your pace and the number of postures you have learned to practice. It is not necessary to arrive at the exact start time or stay for the entire scheduled class.
This class follows a dynamic sequence of poses designed to stretch, strengthen, and detoxify your body. Expect to sweat and be challenged! The class will follow the Primary Series up to Navasana (boat pose) and include the final 3 seated poses. Some simple hands-on adjustments will be offered, and modifications will be shown as necessary. Sanskrit asana names and counts are used as much as possible.
This class is suitable for complete beginners and those who have attended our beginner’s course.
We will work slowly through the standing and seated poses of the ashtanga primary series, providing a balanced practice and a foundation of how the Ashtanga practice works. Modifications and options of poses will be provided to ensure the class is accessible and fun!
These flowing classes use sequences to build to a peak posture, plus an opportunity for a long relaxation and restorative postures at the end of each session. These classes are intermediate level and suitable for anyone who enjoys flowing sequences, and a few challenges.
There is a focus on breathing and each class will include various types of pranayama. There will also be a meditation/relaxation.
This is the practice of slowing down.
Sink in. Allow yourself to be held by the support of bolsters, straps, blocks and eye pillows. Take your time to get completely comfortable in each position so that you can settle in for up to 15 minutes.
Each session will include a guided relaxation in Savasana. Some weeks many include a Yoga Nidra (yogic sleep) and include a guided journey of sensation through the body, noticing one part at a time.
As well as great for experienced yogis, this class is very suitable for absolute beginners, pregnant and newly postnatal yogis (after a six-week check with the doctor). Lucy is a pre- and postnatal exercise specialist and a Mum herself, so you’ll be well looked after.
This weekly yoga class will be a lovely mix of some slow sequences, some sun/moon salutations and then delicious restorative yoga; holding super relaxing poses for several minutes. Lucy has a passion for music so that is always subtly interwoven into the asana practice. Come and join Lucy for an easy start to your Sunday, to stretch out and slow down the mind and the breath.
While a dynamic yoga practice focuses on the muscles, yin yoga focuses on the connective tissues, such as the ligaments, bones, and joints of the body that normally get less attention during a more active Asana practice. Suitable for almost all levels of student, yin yoga is a perfect complement to a dynamic (yang) practice such as ashtanga which focuses on heat building and purifying and muscle strengthening and lengthening.
In this class we add multiple props (blankets, bolsters and blocks) to support the body and create a restorative experience.
AcroYoga is a community-based practice that supports people through movement, connection, and play, combining the playfulness of acrobatics with the healing therapeutics of yoga.
Solar acrobatics are fun, energetic, and cultivate trust; Lunar therapeutics are compassionate, gentle, and cultivate listening and letting go.
In our All-Levels classes, you will train body alignment, muscle engagement, and balance—whether you are a beginner or experienced, you can never train these aspects too much. Each class will focus on basing poses, a flow, or a washing machine, finishing with a short partner massage.
Led by an expert strength and conditioning trainer. These classes involve a mixture of weights and circuit training activity and will focus on building good technique and strength to support your yoga practice.
This class can also support injury rehabilitation or changing negative patterns caused by habits in our every day lives.
(As taught by Yogi Bhajan)
Kundalini Yoga is a yoga of awareness, self-acceptance and self-initiation. It is a bright and refreshing experience of postures, mantras, and breathing practices that release reservoirs of energy from within. Each class is an holistic practice that shines each facet of the diamond that is yoga.
Self-mastery is the cornerstone of Kundalini Yoga. There is no initiation by a Master or Guru. In Kundalini Yoga, we self-initiate. We learn to become self-sovereign. How? Through practice. Through showing up on our mats and experiencing the mind, the body, and the breath at work. As we practise, we begin to notice our patterns, our blocks and our limitations. And then we transcend them. The simple act of shining awareness onto them begins the process of dissolving what binds us.
The Iyengar method of yoga is named after Sri B.K.S. Iyengar. The teaching style helps you to focus on the correct alignment your body in poses ensuring that you are working safely with maximum benefit to your flexibility, strength and wellbeing.
Classes generally start with simple poses and gradually move towards more advanced poses, ending with a period of relaxation and sometimes incorporating breathing techniques. Props, such as blocks and belts, are sometimes used in class to allow those with less strength or flexibility to work correctly and achieve their full potential.
The classes can be hard work, as the poses involve intense stretching, but you will leave the class feeling calmer and lighter.