FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

DO I NEED DO BOOK FOR A CLASS?


You will need to book and pre-pay in order to attend any online yoga classes. Please fill in the pre-yoga questionnaire when you sign up and make sure you have purchased your props and are ready to go. If you are booking for an in-person class, they are also pre-paid per term and spaces are limited.




I'M JUST A BEGINNER......


I recommend that as a beginner you start with a basic introduction to yoga to learn the foundations from the ground up. I have over twenty years experience as a natural health practitioner and yoga therapist and will make sure you are safe at all times. Your first yoga experience can set the pace for your entire yoga ‘career’ so it’s important to feel comfortable and at ease in this new environment. Don’t be afraid to ask questions during class or share when a posture is uncomfortable or perhaps impossible for you. Remember, everyone was a beginner at some point! There is a phrase that yogis use called “beginners mind” that reiterates the importance of being in the moment and developing self awareness. As a beginner you will often experience the most profound releases and insights because yoga is so new and expansive for you, so be brave, be patient and above all, enjoy yourself!




SOMETIMES I FEEL VERY EMOTIONAL DURING YOGA


Yoga helps us to shift stale and stagnant energies that embed as tension, fatigue or weakness in certain areas of the body and within the layers of the mind. Think tight hips, stiff shoulders and neck and contracted hamstrings, repetitive thoughts, headaches and confused, critical inner dialogue. Every sensation is an indication that energy is blocked, so when we begin to breathe deeply and fully and start to unpack these old energies, emotions will begin to rise to the surface to be examined, accepted and then released. Don’t worry, it’s absolutely normal and completely fine to shed a tear or feel vulnerable. This may be the first time you have allowed yourself to acknowledge fear, stress or grief, so let things come up and know you are safe and that you are not being judged. If anything, you are being celebrated for your courage in doing so. Everyone has their moments on the mat and this is exactly why we do yoga – to connect more deeply and authentically with ourselves and start understanding the intimate relationship between our present levels of happiness and our unconscious patterns of thought, emotion and deed.




HOW MANY CLASSES SHOULD I BE DOING?



Ideally two to three classes per week will manifest many wonderful benefits for you, but it really depends on what is doable for you. Yoga can increase your sense of inner peace and calm, help you develop greater love and compassion for yourself and others, improve your sleep and cultivate mental clarity and inner stillness. It is the ultimate tool to help you connect to and understand who (and why) you are. It also increases lung capacity and lowers stress levels, helping to create a stronger, flexible and more capable and comfortable physical body for you to live in.




WHAT YOGA EQUIPMENT DO I NEED?


For online classes at home, you will obviously need to have your own mat and equipment. I prefer eco-friendly products, even though they may be a little more expensive than the regular (and cheaper) mats used in most studios, they last longer, are free of nasty toxins and biodegradable. I prefer LovEarth or Manduka. You might also want to have some water handy, though I do suggest you drink before and after your practice, not during, to allow your body to regulate itself naturally.




IS YOGA A RELIGION?


Yoga is a philosophy, not a religion, although it does have a potent spiritual component. Yoga has been practiced by individuals of widely differing beliefs all around the world for generations. In order to practice, you only need to believe in the possibility that you can transform yourself, that there is always more to learn and that there is a better way to approach life than through the perpetuation of old habits that just bind and restrict one further. At its’ core, yoga opens the heart centre, enabling us to see where we have not yet tapped into our highest potential as human beings. Yoga seeks to put us in touch with our spiritual truth – our inner nature.




IS YOGA A WORKOUT?


Although the focus in yoga is more about inner balance, healing and reconnecting to your deepest self, a regular practice will not only open your mind and offer you a fresh perspective on your life but it will also absolutely change your physical body. While not every style offers an intense aerobic workout, most assist to burn calories, stimulate hormones and enhance communication and function between muscles, joints and organs. Just as importantly, as you move into an improved state of well-being, you will make choices off the mat that also improve your health in other ways. This is where it is imperative to practice with teachers who are properly trained and have several years of experience in being able to read bodies – even mindsets – and manipulate and manage energy correctly. Mana Yoga has its’ roots in traditional Chinese medicine and the meridian system and by practicing this particular style you can influence the function of your organs, your metabolism and all systems in your body. There are specific postures that address weight balance as well as effecting the associated emotions and mindsets. You will definitely be moved, cleared and strengthened on all levels.




WHAT IF I CANT DO A POSE?



Yoga is about baby steps; we must crawl before we can walk and walk before we can run. I always offer a modification when I they see someone uneasy in any posture and encourage students to “make the posture their own”, meaning, adjust so you can yield into it with grace and ease so it suits your body in the moment. I never tell students to contort themselves in order to fit into an ideal of what they think a posture should be or to replicate what they have seen in the media or a magazine. I don’t push bodies into postures they aren’t ready for and prefer to stress the non-competitive nature of yoga by inviting you to make the practice your own. Do what is best for you. Don’t force yourself into a shape that you aren’t ready for because we certainly won’t be asking you to do that. The golden rule of thumb is: “If it hurts, don’t do it!”




HOW OFTEN SHOULD I PRACTICE?


Traditionally, the (male) Indian masters taught yoga to individual (male) students as a daily reformative practice and powerful tool to facilitate self awakening and personal development. The idea of maintaining a daily practice can be quite overwhelming to a beginner however, so I recommend you set a goal you can realistically keep. Consistency is the key – it’s far better to commit to one class per week, than to attend four classes one week, none for the next two weeks and then none at all. The more you practice, the better you will feel and the more you will want to practice. Binge yoga will not serve you in the long run!




WHAT DOES YOGA MEAN?


Yoga is a Sanskrit word that means “to yoke” or “unite”. As a practice, it is a scientific system for achieving total physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being; a means to unite the body, mind and spirit. The term yoga is often to describe the postures or the physical part of yoga; however, these poses, called “asana”, are only one of the eight “limbs” of yoga. If you are interested to learn more I recommend the following books: Light on Yoga by BKS Iyengar; The Tree of Yoga by BKS Iyengar; The Bhagavad Gita; Patanjali’s Sutras; The Yamas and Niyamas by Deborah Adele and Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahanda Yogananda.




CAN I PRACTICE YOGA IF I’M PREGNANT OR MENSTRUATING?



Yes to both. Moving your body gently and safely when pregnant, cultivates a deep sense of empowerment and connection as you prepare to birth not only your baby, but also yourself from woman to mother. Prenatal yoga will help strengthen and open your body, release old beliefs that might hinder your sense of confidence and calm and teach you how to rest and relax deeply into your beautiful, expanding body, heart and soul. When you are menstruating, your body and mind relish the opportunity to soften into any discomfort as you physically release what no longer serves and drop into a more contemplative inner space. As you tune into the wisdom and beauty of your divine feminine self, you can use yoga postures and practices like pranayama and mantras, to help you appreciate and even welcome this sacred rite of passage each month.




CAN I LEAVE DURING THE CLASS?


In order to keep disruptions to a minimum, please plan to arrive on time and stay for the entire class. If for some reason you need to leave early, please let me know in advance. You are of course always welcome to enter and exit the studio (quietly) during class to use the restroom and please turn off your mobile phone or put it on silent if you are expecting an urgent call.




CAN I PAY BY CASH OR CARD?


At the moment we only have facilities for cash if you wish to pay casually. We have the Glofox app installed for your convenience so you can book in for one class, buy a pass or purchase one of our special membership offers and save yourself time AND money. Please note that pass and membership extensions or changes to conditions are not permitted.




DO YOU OFFER CLASSES IN THE WORKPLACE?


Yes. I have experience teaching in offices, hospitals and schools, as well as team-building classes held privately for corporate groups. I am also available to teach small private groups, either regularly or for special occasions such as birthdays, hens/bucks weekends and during school holidays. To discuss/arrange please contact me at denby@denbysheather.com.




I AM READY FOR MY FIRST CLASS....


Please arrive at the studio about ten minutes before class time so you can meet me, have a quick chat with other students and then get yourself settled. You’ll be shown where to leave your personal items, reminded to turn off your cell phone and guided to a mat. Grab any props you feel you need on the way. If others are already resting on their mats, please keep noise/conversations to a minimum. Arriving early will also give you time to ask me any questions you might have and share any injuries or physical conditions for your safety. It is imperative that I know if you are pregnant or dealing with an acute injury BEFORE class begins.




CAN I BRING A TEENAGER TO CLASS WITH ME?


Teens are welcome to attend at a reduced price with a parent – $10 – but they must be over the age of 16. This is because yoga for children addresses very different needs to that of the adult body, and to keep growing bodies safe, a specific teens or kids class is best. If you have any questions, feel free to speak to me of course.