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Beginners FAQ

  1. What is yoga?

    Yoga derives from the Sanskrit word yuj. It means to yoke or bind. It is often referred to as a "union" between breath, body, the mind and the emotions. Yogi refers to a male practitioner and yogini refers to a female practitioner. Most scholars agree that yoga is around 5,000 years old. Most contemporary forms of yoga have roots from the writings of an Indian sage named Patanjali who compiled the Yoga Sutra around 2,000 years ago. This is a collection of 195 verses or aphorisms that includes the eight limbs of yoga (also known as Raja Yoga.) These limbs include: the yamas (external disciplines), the niyamas (internal disciplines), asanas (yoga postures - which is the limb that most people today associate with yoga), pranayama (breath regulation), pratyahara (sense withdrawal), dharana (concentration), dhyana (meditation), and samadhi (enlightenment, liberation, immersion, absorption).

  2. What does Hatha mean?

    Ha means "sun" and tha means "moon". This implies a balance between hot and cold, active and inactive, strong and soft, yin and yang, etc. Hatha can also mean willful. Hatha yoga refers to the physical exercises and postures (asanas) that are designed to bring balance and alignment to the body, mind and heart. In this practice, there is particular emphasis on the alignment, balance and flexibilities along the spinal column. The focus on the breath is the essential tool that keeps us fully present within the moment.

  3. What does Bhakti and Bhakti Flow mean?

    Bhakti refers to the yoga of love and devotion. Flow refers to the seamless synthesis of the movements between body, breath and heart. Our yoga classes are taught as vinyasa, which is a flowing sequence of yoga poses that take us deeper into the practice with time. We emphasize the importance of dedicating the practice to others in this world. This is a central aspect of Bhakti.

  4. Is yoga a religion?

    No, it is not. Yoga is a philosophy, science and art that comes from India and is estimated to be 5,000 years old.

  5. How is yoga different from other forms of fitness?

    Yoga is more than the physical. We tap into the awakening of dormant energies throughout the body, mind and heart. Through the steadying of the mind within the practice, we learn quite a lot about ourselves, our attachments and our avoidances. With true compassion, we begin to let go of negative mental patterns and self-imposed limitations that may prevent us from feeling connected to present time energy.

  6. How often should I practice?

    You will feel a difference after one class. It really is that powerful. Try to stick with it three or more times a week. But do not worry if you don't have that much time. Just try and do a little something as often as you are able, even twenty minutes at home a few times a week is fine. The more you bring the practice into your life the faster the benefits will find you! You should always take at least one day off a week though. I truly believe that you only get out of it what you put into it.

  7. I'm not flexible. What if I cannot touch my toes?

    This is all the more reason to come do yoga! After all, if you were going to school to learn Spanish, would they expect you to already know the language? Our instructors are talented and compassionate guides who look forward to showing you different ways for you to touch your toes and your heart!

  8. Why do you chant?

    Chanting is unique to certain schools of yoga. We believe in the healing qualities of sound and vibration. It is not a religious element. Yet we do respect all religions and encourage you to use the practice of yoga to enhance your personal belief system. We have no dogma here. You're welcome to chant and you are welcome not to chant. Sometimes, it's just nice to sing for the heck of singing, tone deaf or not!

  9. What do I eat or drink before class?

    Try not to eat two-three hours before you practice. We twist the body and turn it upside down and bend it forward quite a lot. If you do need to nourish yourself, consider a light snack like juice, soymilk, or a handful of nuts 30 minutes before hand.

  10. What do I wear and what should I bring?

    Wear something easy to move about in like sweat pants, leggings, or shorts, Nothing too loose otherwise you'll be adjusting it a lot. And nothing too restrictive so that you can move easily. Wear what feels comfortable and what can handle sweat. One thing you should not wear is a scent. Make sure you shower and remove perfumes or colognes. Don't worry about footwear since we practice barefoot. Please do not wear shoes into the actual yoga room.

    MATS: We have a limited number of rental mats. These mats are completely laundered between uses. They are washed thoroughly and dried completely. The rental rate is $5.

    TOWELS: You may rent a clean laundered 20"x40" towel for $2.

    ALSO, we sell mats, towels, and other yoga goodies in our retail area!

    We do not sell or encourage use of plastic water bottles. Bring your own bottle or canteen and fill up at our Hydration Station, which pours forth pure, filtered water. We sell canteens in case you forget yours.

  11. What should I expect BEFORE the class?

    Make sure you review our class schedule and select an appropriate class for your level and your schedule. You can register online, use our Mobile App, and even sign up at the studio. Make sure you allow for time to find parking and for checking in. We highly encourage public transit and cycling. If you ride a bike. Make sure you use a U-lock and not a cable lock.

  12. How do I pay for a class?

    You may pay by cash or credit card.

    We recommend Online Registration for our busier classes in order to secure your space.

    Our three payment options
    1. Drop In $15
    2. *New One-Month Limited $108
    (Maximum 10 classes within 30 days)
    3. One-Month Unlimited $150

    (please read this so it's not awkward for all of us later!)

    • No Refunds
    • No Transfers
    • No Extensions
    • Period
    • Really

    A One-Month membership (limited or unlimited) begins with your first class registration.

    IMPORTANT: Pre-Registered students who do not arrive by class start time and who do not cancel online one hour prior to the posted start time are considered "No Shows"
    • Unlimited One-Month "No Shows" lose their space along with incurring a penalty charge of $15.
    • Drop in and Limited One-Month "No Shows" lose their space and are considered to have used that class.

    Please click here to pre-register or purchase classes.

  13. What do I expect DURING the class?

    • SHOES: Remove your shoes BEFORE entering the yoga room. There are shoe cubbies in the reception area
    • PERSONAL BELONGINGS: feel free to bring them into the yoga room but please place them carefully in one of the storage cubbies. Please note: the studio is not responsible for your belongings.
    • CELL PHONE: Leave your cell phone OFF
    • YOGA MAT: Unroll your mat so that you have space in front of you, behind you and to the sides
    • PROPS: You may need a yoga block or a yoga strap. Look for these items in the room
    • SWEAT: our classes are in a warm environment to get the body ready to stretch carefully. You will sweat but try not to constantly wipe it off the body. This tends to have the body create more and more sweat.
    • TOWEL: once you begin sweating, it may be wise to place a towel at the front and back of the mat in a single layer as to help with traction
    • WATER: only drink as needed during the class. Try not to ‘put out the fire' and do not use this as a method of mentally pulling yourself out of the practice
    • MUSIC: each teacher provides a variety of music based on their tastes and the rhythm of the class
    • INSTRUCTOR: each instructor is unique yet provides a compassionate and inspiring approach to a well-rounded, challenging vinyasa (flow-based yoga) experience. If you do not connect with one teacher's method, don't blame yoga and quit. Try another teacher. Find one who sparks your own inner fires and who leads by an example that inspires you. Please visit our teachers page on our website to review our bios
    • ASSISTANTS: many teachers have room assistants who are fully certified as yoga instructors. They may come by to help you in poses. Please let them know if you need anything or if you prefer not to be touched or assisted. We respect your needs.
    • INJURIES and HEALTH CONCERNS: please consult with your health care provider before beginning yoga. Please notify the teacher or assistants before class
    • PREGNANT: please consult with your health care provider before beginning yoga. Please notify the teacher or assistants before class
    • CLASS STRUCTURE: often we begin in a sitting position and the teacher guides you through breath work and a chant
    • CHANTING: this is a non-sectarian spiritual practice, just like yoga. The yoga of sound is integral to this experience and has no religious affiliation. It's okay if you do not want to chant.
    • SEQUENCES: each class begins with a warm up, often akin to sun salutations, and then moves on to various challenging standing poses, seated poses, and reclining poses. This is basically a full-body workout. There is relaxation at the end.
    • PERSONAL LIMITATIONS: know the difference between pain and discomfort. Pain is not allowed. Discomfort is quite alright. Ambition and greed on the practice only brings more tightness, which is counterproductive. Learn compassion for yourself and your personal evolution.
    • MEDITATION: many teachers offer a two-minute meditation at the end of the physical practice. Bask in this with great joy.
    • SAVASANA: this is your final relaxation. Please do not leave before the end of class, otherwise you miss out on the key element behind what we offer. If the teacher is running overtime, then please feel free to quietly exit the room as you see fit. Many yoga teachers have little concept of time. Sorry about this in advance! So, always remember that you are not held captive. Feel free to boogie. We love you just the same.
    • FINAL CHANT and CLOSING: often, the teacher repeats the initial chant at the end of class and then says a few words before we all bow to each other with gratitude. There is no hierarchy nor submissiveness here. We are all completely equal and utterly human. We say Namaste at the end to emphasis the equality of divine energy within every being. No one's got more and no one's got less!
    • FELLOWSHIP: we encourage our visitors to acknowledge one another before leaving. This is integral to our mission to shrink the world.

  14. What should I expect AFTER the class?

    • Hydrate with clean, filtered water
    • Eat lightly (usually wait at least a half an hour or even more)
    • Shower
    • Over the next twenty-four hours really notice your body and any soreness or even openness. Don't worry if you feel very sore or even a little tighter. Just trust the practice and keep doing it. You can break down many walls by sticking with it! If you have real pain, check with your health care provider.
    • Also notice how you feel mentally and emotionally. Over time, most practitioners begin to experience mental clarity and heart-felt kindness in their daily lives. But often we do stir up a lot of different emotions in the process. There's no real need to worry about that, just let it flow but be careful what you do with it. Aim for great kindness always.

Thank you for checking out our studio and this information. I do hope it helps you realize that you are absolutely welcome at our center. Please call on us if we can be of support to your practice.

With love from the heart of the Beloved,