Exercise Review: Iyengar Yoga Centre of Rossmoyne.

Like any exercise, I imagine that the contemplation of doing yoga for the uninitiated may seem a little daunting…

Cries of “I’m not flexible enough!“, “It’s not a real workout , it’s just stretching and lying down a lot!“, “Everyone that does yoga has a perfect figure, and I’m far from perfect“, “Yoga? That’s for hippies!” and “My body is NOT a pretzel!” can be heard ringing through the households of those who would like to try something new, but just aren’t sure about it yet.

There are many, many forms of yoga (Hatha, Ashtanga, Iyengar, Bikram, Vinyasa…the list goes on) and they all have their subtle intricacies – you may find that you prefer one type to another, but how do you even get started?

An excellent way is through a beginners course. Today I’m going to enlighten you on an Iyengar Yoga beginners class that I take at the Yoga Centre of Rossmoyne.

What is Iyengar Yoga?

“Iyengar Yoga is characterized by great attention to detail and precise focus on body alignment. Iyengar pioneered the use of “props” such as cushions, benches, blocks, straps, and even sand bags, which function as aids allowing beginners to experience asanas (yoga body positions) more easily and fully than might otherwise be possible without several years of practice.”

When is it?

The beginners classes take place on Monday and Tuesday nights (7:00pm), which is great because there is plenty of time to get home from work and attend a class. There is also a beginners class on Monday morning at 9:30am for those with a more flexible schedule. All run for 1 hour and 30 minutes.

Who runs the classes?

The Monday night class is run by Anne Horsley, an accredited Iyengar Yoga teacher who has been teaching for nearly 30 years! Along with Anne running the session there are 2-3 ‘helpers’, who I believe are undertaking yoga training with Anne.

During the class they act as roaming help; since Iyengar is so focused on correct positioning of the body, it’s very common to feel a little tap on your shoulder and someone there to guide you into the right pose. I find this excellent, especially for beginners, because some of the positions can be a little challenging at first, knowing that there is always someone to offer assistance if needed is very comforting.

You may also hear your name called out with instructions on how to better your pose, while that may sound intimidating it really isn’t, it’s great to know the teachers are looking out for you (and remember your name!).

What happens in class?

The class starts out lying on your back on a yoga mat with a variety of props supporting you, and a tiny bag of rice placed on your eyelids – this blocks out light and is very soothing. We then take time to begin to breathe deeply and start to relax.

Throughout the class a large variety of exercises and poses of varying difficulty are performed. It would be remiss of me to describe them all specifically because each week focuses on a different part of the body, so the class is ever-changing. Sometimes we work on backbends or core strength, another week is more meditative, you can always be sure you’re going to get something a little different!

The teachers take into account any personal health issues and sore spots you may have too, so let them know beforehand and you will be accommodated!

As the class winds down we get to my absolute favourite part of yoga – MEDITATION! This generally involves putting on a light sweater or blanket to keep warm and lying in a relaxing pose, such as savasana (lying on the back, legs and arms fully extended) or with the legs up the wall to promote easy, nourishing blood flow to the brain.

These 10-15 minutes are pure BLISS! Many students actually fall asleep and little snores can sometimes be heard, cute! I have never fallen asleep but have attained deep relaxation in these moments.

When relaxation time is over (noooo!), we roll over and do a little bow to honour the spirit within, whatever that may mean to us and the class ends.

Who does yoga?

Getting back to the type of people who attend this yoga class, it really is EXTREMELY varied. There are men and women from the ages of roughly 16-70 of ALL shapes and sizes, many of them have specific health issues. Yoga has been recommended to lower blood pressure, reduce stress, depression and anxiety, improve flexibility and joint mobility, improve digestion… the list is almost endless, so throw out your perception of the hippies and the models (although they do practice yoga too!), you’re most likely to find regular people like you or I at a class. And everyone is accommodated warmly.

I did a quick head count and noted about 35 students, which is a large number for a yoga class and yet there is enough personal attention to go around.

The Iyengar Yoga Centre of Rossmoyne also have ‘General’ yoga classes for those who have completed a beginners course and you can also book private teaching.

I highly recommend this beginners yoga class, the personal benefits I’ve received from yoga are very far reaching in terms of reducing stress, anxiety & improving motivation.

Iyengar Yoga Centre of Rossmoyne

po box 748
willetton
western australia 6955
phone +61 8 9354 2221
yogarossmoyne@bigpond.com

If you have any more questions don’t hesitate to leave a comment!

Be well,

xoxo

2 comments

  1. Reid says:

    YES! Yoga is quite relaxing and makes your body feel great (note: coming from skeptical guy’s point of view)

  2. Annette @ Wellness WA says:

    Thanks for your comment Reid, it is good to hear a males point of view on something like this which is perceived as a predominantly female exercise!

    You should keep at your yoga practice!

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