Types of Yoga Classes at Artemis

Types of Yoga Classes at Artemis

If you search for ‘types of Yoga classes’ in a search engine, it can be rather overwhelming with the vast range of classes now available – from the strict traditional classes to novelty modern classes, and the spectrum of classes is ever growing! To help demystify all of the different types of classes on offer, we’ve created this short blog to provide you with an easy to understand description of each of our classes here at Artemis and the subtly different benefits each classes has to offer. 

Hatha

This is probably one of the most well known traditional Yoga classes. Translating as ‘Sun-Moon’, its name reflects the main concept in this style, which is to create balance and harmony in the physical and mental body. In these sessions you are guided through a short meditation (dhyana) to help you arrive to the practice and settle the mind, you will then be guided through a sequence of yoga postures (asana) to help bring about body awareness, strength, balance and mobility, you will explore breathing exercises (pranayama) to deepen your connection inwards and we always finish our hatha practice with a final relaxation (savasana) to allow your body to integrate the practice. Each class enjoys a different sequence, giving you opportunity to explore the body in a variety of ways. 

Flow

The tempo in cranked up a notch here as we work with building heat in the body, tapping into our inner fire, our agni. This is a great opportunity to get the blood circulating, tone and strengthen muscles, improve flexibility and endurance of the whole body. With a light hearted approach we explore a sequence of poses in a creative way, have fun working up to more advanced poses and move in an expressive way through our asana practice. There are always plenty of options and variations in these classes, so you can choose how hard you want your practice to be.

Ashtanga

The tempo rises again here with this dynamic, physically demanding practice synchronizing breath and movement to produce an internal heat designed to purify the body. Ashtanga yoga, uses a set sequence of poses joined together with vinyasas (connecting flows), to maintain body heat for an increased range of movement in poses.This practice is great for building core strength and toning the whole body.  Expect to sweat!

Dru

This gentle and graceful form of yoga works on softness of movement and free flow of energy (as in tai chi).Using easy to follow ‘Energy Block Release’ sequences, these gentle flowing movements help to release tension physically, mentally and emotionally.In Dru Yoga, all movements originate from the spine, enhancing spinal health and vitality.  The gentle flowing nature of Dru sequences make these classes accessible to all, with chair variations also available to those with limited mobility.

Yin

We change the pace dramatically in Yin, taking it really slowly by holding a pose for up to 5 minutes. Yang tissues are considered to be our muscles, which we work with when we build heat in the flow and hatha classes, however here we are working with the Yin tissues, which include the tendons, ligaments, joints and fascia. Once we relax the muscles by becoming still in a pose, we are allowed access to work with these deeper tissues. We feel a deep sense of release here not just physically but mentally too! This improves mobility, flexibility as we release knots and tension in our body. In Yin philosophy it is believed physical tension is a manifestation of blocked energy, with this in mind, we also work with our meridian energy system to help bring about a sense of restored and renewed energy. 

Relax and restore

A practice to help soothe the mind and gently stretch the body. Here we dim the lights, have soft music, light a few candles and use as many blankets as you like! This class is super slow and similar to yin, we hold the poses for up to 5 minutes but we take a gentler approach to the body, as our intention is not to specifically work with our deeper tissues. Our main focus here is to nurture ourselves enabling us to balance our nervous system, boost our immune system and to create an internal environment for ourselves to invite a sense of healing on any level. Whilst in the poses, we encourage you to develop a mindful attitude, cultivate a sense of compassion, acceptance and letting go or physical, mental and emotional tension. We can then find a sense of joy and peacefulness within the space and stillness we have created for ourselves.   

Nidra

Everyone must try Yoga Nidra at least once! Also known as Yogic sleep, this is a powerful guided mediation. Similar to Savasana, you find a comfortable lying down position, close your eyes and relax. However there is a specific system to the guided aspect of Nidra, allowing you to drift inbetween a lucid state of deep relaxation but still keeping a sense of awareness and wakefulness! Well…most of the time, we do sometimes nod off and snore and that is totally fine too! Nidra helps restore balance to the nervous system, hormone system, and boosts the immune system. It is said that half an hour of Nidra gives you the same benefits as a good quality night of sleep!

As always the Artemis family are here to help and offer advice on each of the different types of yoga, so please feel free to approach us and ask! Our initial advice would be to go and try a few different types of yoga classes to see which ones make you glow the most at the end of a session. Depending on what sort of week you are having, what mood you are in, what your health is like, there will be a practice here available and accessible to you.

Click here to view our timetable of classes.

Namaste!

Words by Sarah Thomas (Yoga teacher at Artemis)