As Traditional Hatha Yoga teachers, when you start Hatha yoga class, you connect with the sacred space, express gratitude for our teacher and the teachings, light a candle, and make a positive affirmation. This helps to align with the wisdom you are about to share.
After welcoming your students, you begin with a chant to lift the energy and create a peaceful atmosphere. The “OM” chant stimulates energy, removing any obstacles to the practice. The vibrations rise from the belly to the head, activating the pituitary gland and releasing beneficial hormones throughout the body. It’s like using sound to wake up and start our yoga journey.
Following the chant, focus on eye movements because our eyes absorb a lot. By exercising the eye muscles and optic nerves, we strengthen them, bringing relaxation to the brain and, consequently, to the entire nervous system, then soothe the eyes by rubbing your palms together, activating energy points in your hands. Covering your eyes with warm palms further relaxes them, creating a calm and peaceful effect on the brain and nervous system. Nbegin your class by encouraging the brain to relax, sending a calming message to the whole body.
Next up is the sun salutation, or surya namaskar, which warms and loosens up the entire body, preparing it for the poses that follow. Doing three rounds of surya namaskar gives you time to observe each student in the class and understand their individual needs. It’s a holistic and gentle approach to guide everyone through their yoga practice.
After the energizing sun salutations, it’s time for students to relax in savasana, allowing the body to unwind and feel the positive energy flowing. As everyone settles, the teacher shares the class intention: to embrace a noncompetitive spirit, move through the practice as a meditation in motion, and honor individual needs by resting whenever necessary.
Transitioning to backward bending poses while lying on their stomachs, students stimulate the sympathetic nervous system, triggering the release of toxins. The focus on the spine, addressing the upper, lower, and entire back, helps release any unnecessary tension. Each pose is followed by a moment of savasana on belly, allowing the benefits to sink in.
Moving to a slightly longer savasana after the last backward bend, students prepare for forward-bending poses, promoting a sense of calm and stimulating the parasympathetic nervous system. This position reflects the yoga philosophy of uniting opposites.
The class then progresses to inversions, starting with Sarvangasana, the shoulder stand, which massages the thyroid gland, enhancing blood circulation and lymph drainage. After a brief savasana, the class continues with Matsyasana, the fish pose, to ensure the released thyroxin circulates throughout the body.
Following these inversions, a rest in savasana precedes the spinal twist, Ardha Matsyendrasana, which helps eliminate toxins, revitalizes nerves, and massages internal organs. It’s like giving the body a refreshing reset before moving on to Yoga mudra, the yogic seal. This final pose seals and balances the awakened energy, harmonizing both the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems. It’s a beautiful way to conclude the asana section of the class.
Next in class, we embrace Yoga Nidra, a progressive deep relaxation technique that goes beyond stress reduction. We start by physically tensing and then releasing every part of the body, followed by a mental scan to relax each part with mindfulness. Shifting our focus to the breath, we observe inhalation and exhalation, eventually turning our awareness to the mind, observing it without engaging in thoughts. Finally, we direct our awareness to the peace within, allowing ourselves to rest in that serene space. Yoga Nidra takes us on a journey through different layers of our being, teaching the mind how to relax the body.
Through this process, we discover that we are not just the body, breath, or mind. By becoming the witness, using the higher intellect as a silent observer, we realize our true Self—peace. The experience leads us into silence, allowing the effects of the class to settle within.
After this silent period, we gently bring awareness back to breath and body, transitioning to a seated position for the next part of the class. Following the pattern of moving from the gross to the subtle levels, we now focus on regulating vital energy through pranayama, using three types of breathing.
We start with Deergha Swaasam, three-part deep breathing, which restores the natural flow of breath, centering and calming the body. Next is Kapalabhaati, the bellows breath, clearing the lungs and subtle nerves while expanding prana. Kapalabhaati serves both as a cleansing and breathing practice. Finally, there’s Nadi Suddhi, alternate nostril breathing, calming the system, purifying subtle nerves, and balancing brain hemispheres, preparing the mind for meditation.
Nadis, energetic channels corresponding to physical nerves, intersect at chakras. Through breath, prana permeates every cell of the body and subtle bodies, with Ida, Pingala, and Sushumna being the main nadis. Asanas and breathing practices purify nadis and the subtle nervous system, allowing energy to flow freely. Balanced energy activates Sushumna Nadi, stimulating Kundalini and awakening higher consciousness.
We conclude with chanting OM Shanti to resonate with peaceful vibrations, leading into meditation—the culmination of our preparation. The class wraps up with closing chants, emphasizing that we share the benefits of our practice with the universe, offering the fruits of our efforts in service to all. As Yoga teachers, we share this energy and practice with our students and carry it into our lives.
This Hatha yoga sequence style is Traditional and Given by Sri Swami Satchidananda Ji(Integral Method) We Yoga New vision team is grateful to his contribution in Hatha yoga.
Yoga New vision 200hr YTTC is bringing together these two worlds together Tradition hatha and modern vinyasa to have a more richer experience to yoga students.
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