SIX REASONS (AND MORE) WHY YOU MAY LOVE ASHTANGA YOGA TOO

Pretty much exactly nine years ago, after a hectic Account Manager day in the office, I headed on with my bike through Berlin city to an Ashtanga Yoga Studio. Earlier this week I had discovered a flyer while classically having a cup of Latte Macchiato with my friend in one of the hip cafés at Prenzlauer Berg.  

Dressed up in black with the typical Marlene Dietrich trousers, my fav light green stilettos, with my wild red hair I arrived at Andreas Loh’s school. Super stressed out to make it on time, there I stood in front of his welcome desk. 

The teacher Andreas looked up at me, put his big black glasses shortly under his eyes to scan me. Instantly, I calmed down and —  it felt great. My ego though wasn’t quite conform with my sensation. It was questioning: "Who is that guy?" But probably he thought more or less the same - who is her?.

Yet, Im a woman of commitment and when I say yes, I’ll do it. So I stepped on my borrowed Yoga mat and followed his instructions.

Drawn to the physical approach of this form of Yoga, I simply loved each moment of my very first Ashtanga Yoga session. 

Feeling comfort, warmth and fulfilment I was cycling home through a quite warm Spring evening. I wanted to enjoy every single bit of Berlin’s vibe and scenery. A moment of my life, where I felt presence and future. The end and the beginning. Fear and courage. In each single breath. 

Change would come. 
It did; and pretty BIG. 

After all the years of moving through a consistent practice I carry an unshakeable trust in Ashtanga Yoga. It has become the source for my life, for inner freedom and integrity to be unapologetically ME.

I feel, its 

truly special, 
absolutely awesome,
connective,
experimental, 
pure,
divine, 
beautiful like“The Little Prince”,
deep,
truthful,
nothing to flirt with, 
the real deal, 
endlessly generous, 
caring, 
challenging,
embracing

 

Granting myself with peace - Ashtanga Yoga with the posture Pascimattanasana

Granting myself with peace - Ashtanga Yoga with the posture Pascimattanasana


Here are six more reasons, why I LOVE the system of Ashtanga Yoga.  

Ashtanga Yoga is

  • a holistic form of Yoga. Practiced with the correct method it'll have a lasting positive impact on your well-being. With Ashtanga Yoga you basically can achieve everything, you want in your life.  Not only will you have a beautifully strong body, you'll FEEL strong, clear and beautiful through a natural balance of body, mind and soul. 
     
  • an ancient practice, passed down from teacher to student over thousands of years. You'll learn knowledge, which is proven through "direct and practical experience" and therefore carries truth and absolute faith. Nowadays, more and more people all around the world benefit profoundly from its process of healing, transformation and joy. 
     
  • an eight limbs Yoga*: Asana, what is practiced on the mat, is actually the third limb out of eight. It’s said, through “physical discipline” you’ll be able to experience, internalise and put in action the others: 1. Yama (how we conduct ourselves in life) , 2. Niyama (commitments to ourselves), 4. Pranayama (breathing exercise), 5. Pratyahara (sense withdrawn), 6. Dharana (concentration), 7. Dhyana (meditation), 8. Samadhi (higher consciousness). Ashtanga Yoga uniquely offers integrity as well as carries the capacity to heal and transform you, when those eight limbs are practiced consistently and with the best intention for yourself; any of your suffering can be diminished and vanished gradually. 
     
  • unique. There is no other system of Yoga, where you'll develop an own personal practice, which can be adjusted to time, space and circumstances. Once you've established a solid foundation with your teacher, you can practice independently and safely anytime and anywhere. The key for a beneficial practice is to do what is possible than nothing at all. 
     
  • a sustainable practice, either as a tool for health, your best friend, an intrinsic part of yourself or as a room for contemplation, practiced consistently Ashtanga Yoga will always hold your space in the moment of your life and support you right there
     
  • a source for life, when you want to allow it into yours. Fact is, the practice will serve your intention precisely and your approach will evolve over time. You may start with solving sleeping problems, wanting to loose weight, healing back pain to dive into questions of belonging and purpose. With a regular practice it's you, who'll define you own personal Yoga experience. Every bit of learning, insight, sensation can be applied directly into life. 
From the book: "Ashtanga Yoga Anusthana" by R. Sharath Jois, current lineage holder

From the book: "Ashtanga Yoga Anusthana" by R. Sharath Jois, current lineage holder

It says, 10 years is the minimum time to practice Ashtanga Yoga and to BEGIN! to truly feel and internalise and live Yoga. 

It was Andreas Loh’s teaching, that formed a strong foundation for my continuous learnings in the field of Ashtanga Yoga. Im so grateful for him. We are friends and keep sharing our insights about Ashtanga Yoga, life and his incredibly beautiful Piano Music. 

 

Is it for me, you’re asking?

Before you wonder: "Everybody can practice. Young man can practice. Old man can practice. Very old man can practice. Man who is sick, he can practice. Man who doesn't have strength can practice. Except lazy people; lazy people cant practice Ashtanga Yoga." - Sri K. Patthabi Jois (Guruji, 1915-2009)

I SO much believe in Guruji's statement. With seven years teaching experience Ive come across practitioners from all background, with all imaginable intentions, unique body-types and individual world views and I trust, you're able to do Yoga. Everybody can. It's a practice. You don't need to be anyone. Yes, yourself. Exactly, how you feel and where you are in your life. You can begin - well, - now. 

Only, when you do it, you’ll KNOW! 
Because you FELT it! and your emotions are always the best reason and drive your choice.

Check in with me my availability for Private Sessions and come along to my Group Classes!

FREE INTRODUCTORY ON ASHTANGA YOGA
26. APRIL 2017, 9:30-11a
RESIDENCIA DO SOL, Cascais

PERSONAL YOGA (1-6 ppl) 
Mondays through Fridays, 8a-4p
along the coastline from Lisbon to Cascais

YOGA LISBOA, Lisbon
Mondays & Fridays 12:30p - 2p

RESIDENCIA DO SOL, Cascais
Tuesdays 10a - 11a & Thursdays 2p-3p

Tomorrow I’ll be on my mat. Can’t wait! 
As curious and happy and wholehearted like a kid. 

Let me know about your experience with Ashtanga Yoga and write a comment below!
Give yourself a high five and book a session!
Share the post with your friends, when you think they may be interested!

Id be grateful to hear from you!

With joy & always wild red hair ;)

Your Stef

P.S. 
Don't miss Andreas Loh's Piano Music
http://www.andreasloh.com/en/

 

SOURCES
Join, R. Sharath: Ashtanga Yoga Anusthana

 

Source: http://kpjayi.org