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It's natural to feel intimidated the first time you enter a Westlake yoga studio, even at Balance Within Yoga and Wellness. Remember everyone in the studio also had a “first class," including your instructor! One way to gain confidence is to practice at home and slowly incorporate yoga into your lifestyle. During class, one of our helpful instructors will provide adjustments or assists to help you better align your body, prevent injury, and better position your body in a specific posture. Consider positioning your mat near the middle of the room so you can see what the rest of the class is doing in addition to the instructor.
Yoga is a mind-body exercise that originated in India more than 6,000 years ago. While there are many styles of yoga, in general, every style includes postures (asanas), meditation, and breathing techniques (pranayama). With regular practice, yoga builds physical strength and flexibility while reducing stress and improving the mind-body connection.
Yoga health benefits include reduced blood pressure, increased focus, a deeper spiritual mind/body connection, more energy, and better sleep at night. Many elements of yogic philosophy, such as loving kindness, compassion and non-judgment, may also influence an individual lifestyle as they adopt healthier habits and make more positive, life-affirming choices.
If you are new to yoga, you may be wondering what class to take. Hatha yoga is a gentle style with introductory poses that are accessible to individuals with all body types and athletic abilities. If you have never practiced yoga before, a hatha class is a good place to build a strong foundation before progressing to more athletic styles such as Vinyasa or Ashtanga. At Balance Within Yoga and Wellness, we are happy to work with all new students. Classes are small and enables teacher to modify postures for individual needs.
Finding the right instructor is another important part of beginning yoga. At Balance Within Yoga and Wellness, the teacher is registered with Yoga Alliance have completed either 200 plus hours of training at an approved studio. You can practice with confidence knowing that the teacher is specifically trained to not only help you progress in your practice, but also to help prevent your body from being injured. While some instructors may lead classes in a brief chant, share Hindu or Buddhist philosophy, or display a deity in class, don't let these experiences scare you. Bring increased focus by linking your breath with your movement. The spiritual part of Yoga is entirely up to you!
With a variety of styles taught at Balance Within Yoga studio, you are sure to find the classes rewarding in mind, body and spirit.