What is yoga?
The Sanskrit word yoga is translated as 'union'. The practice of yoga helps to co-ordinate the breath, mind and body to encourage balance, both internally and externally and promote feelings of relaxation and ease. In the West, the most widely taught form of yoga is Hatha Yoga. Yoga classes offer students postures and movements to stretch, strengthen and flex the body, to develop breath awareness, to relax and sometimes to meditate.
I have never been to a yoga class before and do not know what to expect. Will I feel out of place?
Yoga is non competitive so there is no need to feel concerned about being new in the class. At a BWY class everyone is encouraged to work to their own abilities and according to their level, and to create a supportive environment for other students.
What should I wear?
Something loose and comfortable that allows you freedom of movement. Yoga is generally done in bare feet but bring socks to wear especially during the relaxation.
Do I need to bring any equipment?
You will need a mat to practise on but if it is the first time you have attended a class there will be spare yoga mats and other equipment available. If you decide to continue attending you can make a decision on which equipment you wish to purchase. Bring a blanket that you will use to keep warm during the relaxation.
I'm very stiff and/or unfit. Will I be able to do it?
You may find that some things need to be modified by using various props to ensure it is safe for your individual body. Certain movements and asanas may not be suitable for you but you will be advised what these are and an alternative option offered.
I have health issues. Can I still come and is it safe for me to take part?
If you have a health condition you should seek medical advice from your GP before coming to the class. In the majority of instances you can still attend and practise safely. Certain movements and asanas may not be suitable for you but you will be advised what these are and an alternative option offered. You may also find that some things need to be modified by using various props to ensure it is safe for your individual body.
Please make sure you keep me up to date with any changes to your health, so I can make sure you get the best out of your class.
Eating and drinking
Yoga should not be practised on a full stomach, so please avoid eating for at least two hours before coming to class, and no later than four hours before class if you're having a heavy meal.
Although you should not practise yoga when feeling dehydrated, you should not drink water during class unless you have a particular health issue.
Find out more about yoga on the British Wheel of Yoga website: www.bwy.org.uk