The beginning of September can be a bittersweet time – a true mix of endings and beginnings. The children are back at school, which is both a relief and a sadness; the lovely warm days of summer are unfortunately coming to a close; Strictly is starting and all the Christmas paraphernalia is seeping into the shops. But the start of the new term does mean that, finally, there is some time to focus on you, and now is a perfect opportunity to come to Pila Yoga and try one of the classes on the timetable. If, however, you find yourself confused by all the yoga terms, and need help translating all the different styles, here at Pila Yoga we’ve got your back. In part two of our “decoding yoga” series, we have come up with a description of Vinyasa.
What is Vinyasa?
If you take apart the original roots of the term vinyasa, it has two components – Nyasa and Vi. Nyasa means “to place,” while the translated meaning of vi is “in a special way.” Putting these two components together, Vinyasa means an ordered transition between two or more poses. Vinyasa yoga is practised not only with a connection between movement and breath, but also with a connection between the poses in a flowing sequence.
In contemporary yoga parlance, Vinyasa stands as a derivative from Ashtanga, in opposition to hatha. Hatha classes tend to focus on one pose at a time with rests built in between. In contrast, vinyasa, sometimes known as ‘flow’ classes, string poses together to make a sequence. The sequence may be fixed – as it is in Ashtanga, in which the poses are always performed in the same order – but more often, vinyasa teachers have the discretion to choreograph the order and progression themselves leading to lots of amazing, creative and ever-changing sequences to keep you on your toes and make sure you are continuously challenged.
What to expect?
Vinyasa allows for a lot of variety, but will almost always include sun salutations. You can expect to move, sometimes quite dynamically, from pose to pose. Whether the class is fast or slow, includes advanced poses, or is very alignment-oriented does depend on the teacher and the particular style in which they are trained.
We have six Vinyasa classes per week in Pila with Kristina, Elly, Ola, Matt and Evie. Each instructor leads in their own style and have their own inimitable take on their flows.
Evie’s Sunday Vinyasa at 08.45 is Tripsichore inspired, which means that there is special focus on the mind/body connection in the postures – achieved through special breathing techniques. Kristina’s Vinyasa class at 06.45 on a Wednesday is a Power Vinyasa session designed to challenge and build strength.
Who is Vinyasa aimed at?
Vinyasa yoga is suitable for everyone, but if you are brand new to yoga it is a good idea to take a few classes in a slower style of yoga first to get a feel for the poses.
As the leaves start to turn, and autumn creeps in and the summer holidays fade into memory, make the most of the spare few moments in your week with a yoga class at Pila Yoga. September is a great opportunity for some self-reflection and setting new intentions for the new academic year. Here at
Pila Yoga you can pay for an unlimited membership, or buy a pack of session, or even just come as a drop-in. Everybody welcome. See you soon!