Ashtanga is a system of yoga develop in Mysore, India by Pattabhi Jois. Pattabhi was a student of Krishnamacharya who developed Vinyasa Krama, which is the origin of modern postural yoga around 1930. This is the first time we began to see Surya Namaskar and flowing movements linked with the breath.
Born from this is Pattabhi"s Ashtanga Vinyasa System, which have 6 series a student slowly progress though. The most well known is first series or Ashtanga Primary Series. This is known as Yoga Chikitsa or yoga therapy. This set sequence is designed to purify, strengthen and align the body. Ashtanga uses the practice of Tristana which is ujjayi breathing with application of Bandhas and use of Dhristi, our gaze. This application produces the purifying sweat and means to focus, which make this practice a moving meditation.
Traditionally Ashtanga is learned in a Mysore room. Students are slowly given poses one by one until they master the series. You will also see led classes and more recently modern, progressive Ashtanga that allows a student to progress, use props and modify.
Ashtanga primary series focuses on foundational poses, forward folds, hip opening with breath counts.
We rotate in traditional Ashtanga primary Series with our Rocket classes.
Yin yoga is soft, lunar and the opposite of our strong Power, Vinyasa, Ashtanga or Rocket classes. Yin asks us to surrender, to release, to let go, to invite space. Yin asks us to be still, to let go of negative thinking patterns.
In yin we hold poses for longer to target the "yin" tissues of the body-the fascia, tendons, ligaments and joints. We provide a gentle stress to these tissues and can help relieve pain, tightness, increase our range of motion, recover from more steneous activities and improve mental outlook and anxieties.
On a deeper level, yin is a born from Traditional Chinese Medicine working with the 5 element theory and meridian lines of the subtle body. These are energy lines connected to our organs. Throughout these lines are acupressure or acupuncture points.
Practicing yin yoga can gently provide you with a self acupressure massage. We can work with the seasons in the 5 element theory to help alleviate emotions tied with each, helping our QI or energy run smoothly in the body. I currently teach regular and private yin classes in Woodland Park at Aranyani Yoga Studio aranyaniyoga.com and quarterly events at SunWater Spa in Manitou Springs, Co.
Rocket Yoga is a style with deep roots in the traditional Ashtanga Yoga System. Its reorganized into a dynamic, energizing yet accessible practice. Similar to Vinyasa in freedom of movement, Rocket encourages the art of modification and variation. Rocket or Rocket Vinyasa breaks the hierarchy of Ashtanga allowing students to progress and work towards poses from intermediate, 3rd and 4th series Ashtanga.
Like Ashtanga, Rocket is based in the concept of Tristana, which is focus on the breath, bandhas and drishti. We use Ujayi breathing to build a cleansing heat in the body and practice Pranaymas or breath work.
Rocket is a progression from the first practice on, working within set sequences based on primary and intermediate series of Ashtanga with inversions and playful arm balances. Over time and with practice these poses become accessible to everyone.
Rocket was invented by the late Larry Schultz in the 1980s when he was a touring yoga teacher with the Grateful Dead. Larry began to play with the sequences of Ashtanga and it was well received. Bob Weir coined it "The Rocket, because it gets you there faster." It is known as one of the first styles of power yoga.
Like Ashtanga Rocket begins with traditional Sun Salutations A and B, moves into standing postures and forward folds, twists, creative arm balance sequences and plenty of moments to play with inversions like forearm stand, headstand and handstand.
Rocket is a full body system, working every muscle, every tissue, every time. Rocket works on both the physical body and the subtle body energy system.