Spring brings renewed commitment for many people. Our bodies start to reawaken and we are more ready mentally, emotionally and physically to re-start or to begin something new.
Shala is excited this spring to once again bring yoga to SkirtsAfire festival in support of women in all things artistic. We are also bringing Harmony Slater back for 5 days of mysore and workshops to continue working and building relationships with Shala students in the mysore room. To deepen our yoga practice both on and off the mat we are looking forward to offering “Beyond Asana” with Dr. Neil Dalal, and for the first time we are joining the collective voice in the fight to end human trafficking and support those affected by it with “Yoga Stops Traffick”.
Come back to your mat, everyday is a good day to start!
Commit to yourself| Commit to mysore
Why fearing? *
One by one students walk into the mysore room. Quietly and with respect for the space, they set down their mats, then acknowledge the teacher with a smile, or maybe a nod or a glance. They bring themselves to the top of their mats, and in doing so they invite the teacher into the intimacy of their practice.
In the mysore room the other students are already practicing, each guided by their own breath. They move through the sequence of postures the teacher has given them based on their individual histories, abilities, and experiences.
The first time a student enters a mysore room is intimidating. Everyone else seems to know what they are doing and look more experienced and advanced. Often a new student is confronted with self-doubt, not knowing and insecurity, but as they learn the sequence their perspective changes. As they work one on one with the teacher through the individual postures, it becomes clear that everyone is working on a sequence every time they step on their mats.
Every student that comes to the top of their mat in the mysore room is practicing yoga. Sometimes they make it through a series of postures, sometimes they just breathe, and other times they struggle. Sometimes they are in a meditative flow and sometimes they are distracted. The teacher is there for support and guidance, helping the students navigate their individual practices. This ranges from adjustments, to taking the time to workshop asanas, to helping guide individuals’ intentions while encouraging the journey of self and consciousness.
Students start their practices by standing at the top of their mats. To still their minds they may open their practice with the Opening Chant, an Om, or in silence followed by taking their first breaths. Deep inhales and exhales calm the mind, bring awareness to the body, and connect the students to one another as their breaths merge into one. As the students move deeper and deeper into their breath while moving through the asanas, the mind moves inward and only the breath and self remains.
"I have been practicing Ashtanga yoga for 10 years, started with two Led Primary classes a week, overtime the focus turned to Mysore-style practice. Nowadays, you can find me practicing at the Shala Ashtanga Yoga Centre in the morning on most weekdays.
In addition to getting the health benefits of yoga, this challenging practice has been a fun way for me to stay active in my retirement years. Based on my experience, I can honestly say that it is possible to build strength and gain flexibility well into your 60s by practicing on a regular basis.
I enjoy my morning practice in the calm and relax Mysore room at the Shala, and appreciate the personalized guidance and adjustments/assists."
“Since joining the studio and making the terrifying leap from introductory courses to a Mysore practice at the Shala, I’ve noticed a significant increase in my strength, balance, and stamina. I’ve noticed that my posture has improved. I have greater control over my state of mind, which is a relief, because my engineering job can be very stressful. I’ve gained an increased focus and awareness of my body, which has been useful during my weight training, and most surprisingly, I’ve met a community of positive, non-judgemental people who are happy to learn, grow, and share knowledge as we navigate through similar challenges.”
Mysore at a glance
Mysore practice cannot be described. It has to be experienced.
The first, fifth or 100 time you try mysore style class you may not like the process or the teacher, but keep with it. It’s part of the work.
Mysore method of teaching is named from the city in South India where Sri K. Pattabhi Jois taught and lived for over 70 years.
Mysore Style is the traditional way to teach the ashtanga system individually in a group environment.
Mysore is scheduled as a 2-3 hr block of time. Enter the room quietly at anytime within the block of time but allow enough time to complete your practice.
The mysore class is mostly silent apart from a few verbal instructions from the teacher directed towards the individual. This allows for as little interruption as possible so the students can get into their inner flow of experience.
Mysore allows students to develop and work at their own pace. Working with the teacher on the series or section of a series that is appropriate for their individual needs and ability. It is your practice. Your yoga!
Mysore style classes are a place to learn, explore, discover & practice
The Mysore space moves beyond the physical challenges. It challenges our entire being-ness by giving us the time and space to go within.
The Mysore room allows us to be present at all times. This presence is a unique opportunity for us to create a meditative relationship with our physical practices.
New students are always welcome in the mysore room. Yoga or Ashtanga experience is not required to start in a mysore style class
Do not worry about taking too much teacher time if you are new to mysore; practitioners love & are excited to welcome new students.
Wait for the teacher to start your practice if you are new to the mysore class, if you have already practiced the sun salutations start with 5 Surya Namaskara A. The teacher will work with you to teach the sequence as needed.
Students who have been practicing led foundational postures & half primary series classes are encourage to practice the same in the mysore room
Students who have been practicing led full primary series or are home practitioners are welcome to practice up to navasana until the teacher moves you to the next posture(s).
It is acceptable to ask the teacher for no adjustments - it’s your practice, you invite the teacher into your space.
It’s ok to be frustrated, distracted, excited, sad, happy, upset, angry... when you feel like you get/ cannot get headstands (insert asana)!!
Asanas and the Ashtanga system is a tool and method to bring us closer to consciousness
“When you meet your guru, you will first not like him. This is because your guru will put you through difficulties and test you. He will not let you have an easy time.”
-Sharath Jois, tbt 2014
Teachers in the Mysore room
It is the teacher’s responsibility to hold space in the mysore room and provide the student with a supportive environment for the yoga to evolve
To guide students in the practice and the continual refinement of it. Ultimately the teacher will leave the rigor of technique behind as students gain independence and the meditative practice takes over.
Keep you steady in breath, bandha, movement, attention, refinement and alignment to refresh, renew, reconnect, and activate the body & mind in the richness that the practice brings.
Works to help you find a way to access your breath in every asana, and not to force you into a bind. Mysore teachers will watch your practice, offer suggestions, make adjustments, and be your support.
The nourishing of a close student-teacher relationship allows both the teacher and student to understand their idiosyncrasies and to gain insight into the individual’s practice.
Work to help you stay present within the potency of the practice, guide you away from ambitions and to draw awareness into the centre of your being, into silence and stillness moving you into the infinity of consciousness.
"I have been an Ashtanga practitioner for many years and thanks to Melissa, Linda and Kellie. I have progressed and gotten deeper into my practice than I ever imagined. I enjoyed led classes for years then was encouraged to try a Mysore practice. It has become my favorite practice as my teachers are able to individualize my practice including modifications in case of injuries or assists & encouragement when starting to progress deeper into the practice. Melissa, Kellie and Linda are dedicated and experienced teachers as well as daily practitioners. I am happy to have them as part of my life at the Shala for guidance. Kellie, Linda and Melissa are approachable, open to talk and open to my suggestions. A studio with the right vibe!”
One day one voice. YOGA STOPS TRAFFICK
YOGA STOPS TRAFFICK is a one day, worldwide
community yoga event to raise awareness about
human trafficking and much-needed money to
support its victims. Shala is honoured to join studios
& yoga practitioners around the world on March 10
to help raise money in this fight.
EVERYONE CAN HELP!
YOGA STOPS TRAFFICK Donation Classes
MARCH 10, 2019
9:00 - 11:00am - Mysore Style Class with Kellie Kitson
11:00 - 1:00pm - 108 Sun Salutations with Melissa Wasserfall.
All proceeds* collected will be donated to Yoga Stops Traffick. *Minimum suggested donation:$20
Shala once again is excited to be supporting SkirtsAfire in their
vision to be diverse and daring. To empower artists and audiences
in creating a space for women’s artistic excellence to be cultivated,
to be experienced and to be passed on.
March 16 Schedule
Nina Haggerty Gallery, 9225-118th Ave
all classes are free & open to donation
9:45-10:30 - Ashtanga, Half Primary with Linda Turnbull
10:45-11:30am - Yin with Tara Schuller
11:45-12:30pm - Ashtanga Foundations, Yoga Bootcamp Style with Kristen Overgaard
Come and experience your yoga practice accompanied by the beautiful voice of the cello performed by Amy Nicholson
5 Days with Harmony, April 2-6
Harmony is currently the only KPJAYI "Certified" Ashtanga Yoga Teacher in Canada …
"In the Mysore method, students are met as individuals. Each person is taught progressively according to his or her readiness. A relationship is cultivated with the teacher. The practice begins to grow... "
Harmony, will be holding space for us once again in the Mysore room for 5 mornings this April. She will individually work with each student according to their unique abilities, personality & experience. All levels of students are welcome to come and experience the Mysore room.
Full 5 Mysore Mornings & Workshops:
Early Bird until March 15 $195.00+gst
After March 15 $220.00+gst
Mysore Morning Sessions:
$30/ session or all 5 mornings for:
Early Bird: $125.00 +gst
Regular: $140.00 +gst
Tuesday thru Friday morning
April 2-5 6:30* to 9:00 am
April 6 8:00 to 10:00 am
* studio is open at 6am, teaching will start at 6:30am
Workshop Sessions: $45/ session or both for $80
Sat, April 6
Open hips makes many asanas more accessible. This session will explore several different ways of opening the hips throughout the practice, and introduce different techniques to enhance ‘hip-opening’ outside of the practice - whilst protecting the knees. Students will come to understand more fully how to get into this area to help advance their personal practice.
Patanjali Yoga Sutra & the 7th Series...LIFE!
Sat, April 6
Yoga is the science of experience and a philosophy for living. The eight limbs provide us with a guide for how to lead a fulfilling and powerful life. When we integrate them into each area of our daily experience we cultivate a deeper connection to our true identity
Harmony will also discuss the philosophy behind the practice of yoga and answer any other questions you may have. This is an opportunity for students to ask Harmony practice related questions or other yoga related questions to help better understand yourself and the practice.
Contextualize your asana practice. This is a series not to be missed!
This spring shala is excited to bring on Neil Dalal, Associate
Professor of South Asian Philosophy & Religious Thought at the
University of Alberta in exploring yoga beyond asana series. The
sessions will delve into an indepth look at the the Sanskrit language,
Upanishads and the Yoga Sutras concluding with tracing key
moments, figures and influences that shaped the development of
modern yoga with the History of Yoga.
$40 + gst per session
$150 +gst for all 4 sessions
$130 +gst - register before March 29, 2019
SANSKRIT April 14th
This session provides a brief history of the Sanskrit language and its importance. The basics of pronunciation, how to pronounce sanskrit names and the Ashtanga invocation chant will be explored.
UPANISHADS April 28th
The Upanishads are the oldest and most authoritative wisdom text from India’s Yoga traditions. This session explores their visions of oneness underlying all things, and their path to freedom and wholeness.
YOGA SUTRAS May 5th
This session delves into the psychological foundation of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras and the importance of internal meditation practices for understanding one’s true nature.
HISTORY OF YOGA May 12th
This session traces key moments, figures, and other influences that shaped the development of modern yoga and it’s complex entanglements with embodied wellness practices, new age spirituality and the west.
Neil Dalal is associate Professor of South Asian Philosophy and Religious Thought at the University of Alberta. With a PhD in Asian Cultures and Languages, and an MA in East -West Psychology, Neil is a traditional teacher of Advaita Vedanta, the philosophy of non-duality, and has spent over four years in India studying with Advaitin monks and living a monastic life.
spring bi annual specials
mondays at Shala for $10
Drop in to any classes offered on mondays for $10. All our monday classes are excellent entry level classes whether you are new to yoga, ashtanga or the mysore style. Check our website for the most recent schedule.
Mysore & Workshops in April with Harmony
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