Although I am Hatha Yoga trained, my classes incorporate elements of Iyengar, Ashtanga and Yin Yoga.
Most of the yoga that we practice is based on Hatha yoga. Hatha yoga is a balanced practice which includes yoga postures and breathing exercises, which help to bring peace to the mind and body, while also preparing it for deeper spiritual practices such as meditation.
This is a form of Hatha yoga but the emphasis is on the detail, precision and alignment in the performance of postures along with breath control. Props are frequently used to assist in the correct execution of the postures. The development of strength, mobility and stability is gained.
This is a fast-flowing routine that takes you through a set sequence to target the whole body. By performing this sequence repeatedly for the series that you're practising (there are 6 sequences in total), you work all the elements of the body and prepare yourself to move up to the next series. The simplicity of a fixed routine also allows you to focus more on the breath, and find a more meditative mental state during the practice.
Yin yoga is a very slow practice as you hold poses for a long time. In a class this is typically 3-5 minutes at a time, although it can be practised by holding postures for up to 20 minutes. The poses in Yin yoga aren't about building muscles as we are working on the connective tissues. Yin yoga improves your overall flexibility dramatically, and stimulates the joints encouraging them to produce more synovial fluid and improving their health. It's deeply nourishing and complements the Yang style of most yoga practices.
This is the slowest of all the yoga styles that I teach. The body is guided into a variety of positions, while lying on the floor, allowing passive stretching. Props are used to support the body, rather than your muscles, so that the poses can be held comfortably for longer. The practice allows you to slow your breath and body and find stillness producing a relaxing, calming and healing effect.
YOGA FOR PEOPLE LIVING WITH CANCER
I have completed extensive training in this area and seen so many benefits to the students that I have taught. Classes are very gentle and are therefore suitable for people undertaking treatments and also those who have completed treatment many years earlier. The breath and breathing practices, along with some meditation, are often useful skills for people who want some coping strategies. I've found that people attending these classes have enjoyed the "escape", and being with others who understand what they are feeling.
I am currently doing more training in this area. I already include some of this style of yoga in gentle yoga classes but feel that there is scope to offer a whole seated yoga class in the future.