Olivia, one of our wonderful Yoga Flow teachers and our Gong Meditation teacher, is adding a new class to her schedule on Saturdays at 2:45pm. She shares the focus and fire of a different kind of Yoga Flow in this new class.
For Olivia, vinyasa has always been her foundation.
Even before I settled on a specific yoga style, I was always in vinyasa flow classes. I have a lot of that pitta or fire energy in me. I need my yoga practice to outrun my mind. I found a great sense of calm in the vinyasa practice because my mind couldn’t keep up and so it finally relaxed.
Ashtanga yoga transformed the calm she found.
The Primary Series of Ashtanga was something else entirely. Here was a series of postures that was elegant, challenging, soothing, and invigorating. My practice turned into a conversation with my body, breath, and mind. I knew I had found a special practice that made me want to explore my boundaries, and then reach beyond them.
Ashtanga yoga was developed by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois under his teacher Krishnamacharya in Mysore, India and is the foundation of all vinyasa flow in the United States. Unlike more freely organized flow classes, Ashtanga has six series of postures, Primary, Intermediate, and Advanced A, B, C, and D. The practice follows the same structure and same postures every time you practice it.
At first, I thought doing the same poses every day would get boring. But here’s the remarkable thing: I have felt more freedom to explore and grow within this rigid sequence. Growth in your physical strength and flexibility happens rapidly, and it is truly incredible to witness your progress. You feel new worlds open up every time you work through the series.
Olivia studied the Primary Series in Mysore, India with an amazing group of yogis and teachers at Samyak Yoga.
The 200 hour training was an intensive. I was up at 5:30am to practice from 6-8, and we had lectures and practicums lots of opportunities to teach each other. We went to bed around 10pm every night. It was a mind-blowing experience that challenged my mind and my preconceptions as much as it challenged my body physically. I wouldn’t be teaching without the love and support of those beautiful yogis from all over the world.