Yoga in Lewes - 2013
Classes re-start on Monday 10th June 2013
(Zoë is currently teaching in Paxos)
Suitable for the averagely healthy.
6.30-8.00pm Ongoing Beginners – Home
10 June – 29 July 2013
6.00 – 7.45 pm – General
(Open to anyone who has completed a foundation course)
12 June – 24 July 2013
10.00 – 11.30 am – General (beginners welcome)
14 June – 26 July 2013
Venue (Wednesday and Friday):
Classes at Equilibrium Studio on Cliffe High St (above Streaks Ahead), Lewes, BN7 2AN
Tuesday Evenings – Home Studio
8.00 – 9.30 pm – General (not suitable for beginners)
2 April – 31 April and 11 June – 23 July 2013
Payment: The YogaCard
Buy blocks of classes – to be used in any class over the summer (classes at Home Studio need to be pre-booked)
5 Class YogaCard: £40
10 Class YogaCard: £70
15 Class YogaCard: £85
Students who have completed a 6 week foundation course are welcome in the General Wednesday class over the summer term.
Beginners are welcome in the Friday morning class.
Students who are confident with shoulderstand and the supports used in Iyengar yoga are welcome in the Tuesday 8pm class.
Please do get in touch if you have any questions:
Phone: 01273 472748
Mobile: 07956 616934
What happens in a class?
All classes start and end quietly.
At the beginning of all classes I will ask how you are – I’m not just being polite. I want to know if there are any changes in your bodily experiences since the week before – this might be new insights or it might be a discomfort or a pain. I want to know if you’re menstruating. And very very importantly I want to know if you think you might be pregnant (you might not want to discuss this in front of everyone else, so CALL me – 01273 472748).
We sit at the beginning of a class – in Beginners’ classes you may lie down.
At the end of the class you’ll lie down for relaxation – sometimes called ‘corpse pose’ (Savasana in Sanskrit). You’ll be guided through a relaxation of the body and we start to learn how to stop controlling the body and the breath. We begin our close examination of the breath during Savasana.
What sort of yoga poses will I do?
In every class we’ll start the asana (asana means posture) part of the class with some basic movements. In most of my classes I’m aiming to finish the asana part of the class with students exploring a more challenging posture – depending on the level of the group (what’s challenging when you’re in your first term is very different to what’s challenging after many years practice).
For beginners the emphasis is on standing poses. We’ll pay particular attention to the arms and the legs. We’ll find out (and keep re-finding out) how important the hands and the feet are.
For more experienced students, the focus will be on a group of poses, week by week: Standing Poses, Twists, Backbends, Sitting Poses, Inversions. So, although we may do (for instance) some standing poses in most classes, we might be using them as a preparation for sitting poses (for instance). The earlier poses in a class will be leading somewhere.
In classes for more experienced students we will also begin some pranayamic work: we’ll look at how the breath inhabits the body in recuperative postures.
I’ve heard that Iyengar Yoga is all about using props rather than doing the poses?
In some classes you’ll be asked to use equipment: blankets, belts, wooden bricks, foam pads, chairs. Sometimes people think that equipment is there to “prop up” an unfit or inflexible body – to make a pose easier. Occasionally, and especially in Beginners’ classes, this may be true. A prop will allow a beginner to feel the benefits of a pose – it will show someone where they’re heading. However, the equipment is more frequently used to help to expose the intelligence of the body, to make it more sensitive, to work accurately.
One of the things you’ll learn in a Beginners’ class is how to use the equipment. I expect more experienced students to be familiar with ways of working with equipment.
Do you do hands-on adjustments?
Yes. People learn in all sorts of different ways. I can show and tell you something which, despite your best efforts, you may struggle to understand – you might get it in an instant if I physically help you to move your body in a certain way.
On occasion I will demonstrate a teaching point on a student’s body.
I will try and be sensitive about whether you’re comfortable with being adjusted or with having the class look at your work – if I get it wrong please do tell me!
Do you chant?
We may chant a few OMs. Om is the primordial syllable – it’s the sound that was made as the universe was created. It’s not obligatory to join in.
I will teach you a short Sanskrit poem (like a prayer) dedicated to the Sage Patanjali (Patanjali is often regarded as the ‘father of yoga’). You can find out more about Patanjali and hear B.K.S. Iyengar (my teacher’s teacher) reciting the poem here: Invocation to Patanjali: www.bksiyengar.com
Is there a “Class Ettiquette”?
Please arrive in plenty of time to be on your mat and ready to start at the beginning of class.
If you are late:
- at Equillibrium (or at a Home class) please ring the bell ONCE only. I will let you in as soon as possible after the quiet period at the beginning of the class.
- if you’re not ready to start when the class begins wait to prepare for class until after the invocation (just sit wherever you are) – you can get changed afterwards.
Equillibrium is a shoe-free space. You can leave your shoes in the shoe racks just inside the main studio door.
Please act with respect and awareness for other students and also the neighbours, both when arriving, leaving and during classes.
What are the benefits of yoga?
Generally, people come to their first class looking for a solution to a practical problem : insomnia, aching backs, stiff legs, anxiety. In the process of addressing the practical issue they experience the transformative power of yoga which brings a sense of profound well-being.
Yoga engages every fibre of the body; the joints, organs, glands, circulation, skin and nerves. It promotes strength, suppleness and vitality.
As well as a sense of internal harmony and well-being, it reduces stress and increases energy levels and powers of concentration.
All ages and levels of fitness and health can benefit from practicing yoga. However, some health conditions may be more safely taught in a medical class – please call Zoë to discuss any concerns you may have prior to your first class.
For classes in Lewes with other Iyengar Yoga teachers please contact:
What do I need to know before my first class?
If you have any health issues please call before coming to your first class (01273 472748)
Wear comfortable clothes – preferably something that lets me see your knees (leggings and shorts are ideal)
Be ready to work in bare feet
Bring a sticky mat and a blanket
Come with an empty stomach
Don’t wear perfume or scented deodorant to class
Please arrive in time to begin the class at the published time
And finally – if you have any questions: please A S K!
It’s not a work out it’s a work IN.
Who is this sort of yoga suitable for?
Yoga can be practiced by anyone – all ages, shapes, sizes, colours, backgrounds and levels of fitness. Everyone can benefit in some way through their yoga practice. However, there are some medical conditions that may be more safely taught in a medical class. So, if you have any health issues then its important to call Zoë (01273 472748) first to discuss any concerns you may have. It won’t necessarily mean you can’t attend classes with her, but some postures may need to be modified.
What does “averagely healthy” mean?
Averagely healthy means that you’ve not just had an operation (or a baby), and that you don’t have any long term or major illnesses. It certainly doesn’t mean that you’re in prime physical fitness. Many of my most advanced students walked into their first class anxious about being stiff, unfit, overweight or having done very little exercise in the last couple of years.
Does that mean it’s only suitable for the old, the stiff, the overweight and the unfit?
No. The sort of yoga I teach is through the body – by that I mean that our focus is on what’s happening in the body. Which means that lots of the initial benefits are felt in the body. The key word here is THROUGH the body. We’re using the body as a sort of magnifying glass so that we can see something we might not have noticed without it. The magnifying glass is important and helpful but what we’re really interested in is what we’re looking at (not what we’re looking through). And to an athlete or to a couch potato that might be an equally unfamiliar process. It may even be unfamiliar if you’re experienced in another form of yoga. If you’re looking for a work out (rather than a work in), it’s possible that you might prefer another teacher’s classes.
Does that mean I won’t have to work too hard?
No. You’ll be amazed how much you have to engage all of yourself – mind and body – with seemingly simple movements. And you may experience that as very hard work indeed. And many students are also amazed at what profound changes they experience – both in body and in mind – relatively quickly. And, I’m sometimes amazed at how some (more ambitious) students seem to forget where they were when they walked into their first class!
A sensitive yoga practice is designed so that, although you may work hard during the middle section of a class, you’ll walk out feeling rested and invigorated. Generally, students tell me they sleep particularly well after a class.
Is it safe?
Zoë Reason trained (and teaches within) the Iyengar Yoga tradition. She is certified (and insured) to teach by the Iyengar Yoga Association (UK). Iyengar training is often regarded as one of the most thorough and demanding systems of teaching people to teach yoga. The Iyengar method is methodical and progressive. Which means that you start with simple movements and then, as you progress, you move on to more complicated poses and to more sensitive and subtle ways of working in basic poses. You go at your own pace – and in classes for more experienced students I will give various stages of working.
I’ve done a fair bit of yoga before. What’s the difference between a Beginners’ Class and a General Class?
I suggest that anyone that hasn’t worked with me before comes to one of my Beginners’ classes. We yoga teachers (even within the same tradition) all teach what we’ve understood. And what is understood varies from teacher to teacher, as well as from discipline to discipline. I have different emphases and obsessions from other teachers that I trained with. I expect, in classes for more advanced students, that everyone will be familiar with certain basic ways of working. What qualifies a student to come to a more advanced class is not their strength or their flexibility, or even their ability to show the postures, but the sensitivity they bring to their work.
Can I just drop in?
I teach in a progressive and methodical way. The teaching builds from week to week. Missing the odd week is inevitable but missing too many may mean that you’re missing important understanding about how to work safely. So, for the General classes, you’ll be asked to commit to a term.
Existing students are welcome to drop in to any of the Beginners’ classes.
New students may also come to Beginners’ classes prior to joining another class.
Can I come for a couple of classes before I commit to a whole term?
Absolutely. For new students your first class is free. Then you don’t have to decide whether you want to pay for a whole term until the end of your second class. If, at the end of your second class you feel I’m not the right teacher for you at this time then its fine to just pay the drop in rate (currently £9).
Can I stay in the Beginners’ Class forever?
Well you can . . . And its always useful to come back to a Beginners’ Class even once it’s stopped being your main class. But I hope you won’t want to.
What if I’m pregnant?
I’m very happy to teach my existing students if they become pregnant – and there are now a number of small children in Lewes who I got to know whilst they were growing in their mothers’ tummies. However, I am not sufficiently experienced to work with a student whose pre-pregnant body I’m not already familiar with. Better to be safe than sorry. If you’re trying for a baby then welcome! Let’s get to know one another first.
If you’ve not worked with me before and are looking for pregnancy yoga then see www.lewesyoga.co.uk.
‘The body cannot be separated from the mind, nor can the mind be separated from the soul. No-one can define the boundaries between them.’