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William James (1842-1910), American philosopher and psychologist, once wisely said that “The greatest weapon against stress is our ability to choose one thought over another."
A recent study undertaken by YouGov and commissioned by the Mental Health Foundation in 2018 is the largest known study of population stress levels in the UK, with a sample size of over 4,600 respondents. According to this online poll, about 75% of British adults (aged 18 and over) are overwhelmed by the amount of stress that they feel.
This figure would definitely surprise more than one yogi, especially considering that the practice of yoga (the different yoga poses, called “asanas” and the various breathing exercises, or “pranayama” in sanskrit, for example) helps to tone your body, relax, by learning to let go, and even to improve your stress management.
All yoga practitioners will tell you that doing yoga makes you feel good.
Whether it’s doing sun salutations every morning, practicing prenatal yoga when you’re pregnant, increasing your flexibility thanks to a daily routine of relaxation exercises, etc…
No matter your level, there are countless different reasons why you should take up yoga in Birmingham.
Does that sound tempting?
Don’t hesitate to discover our classes and our yoga instructors located all over Birmingham and the surrounding area.
To get fit and eliminate toxins, there’s nothing better than yoga.
Its regular practice is a bit like gentle gym, consisting largely of stretches and exercises to ensure the alignment of your neck and spinal column, and works the body without having to put in as much effort.
And yet, a beginner will surely struggle to master the correct yoga poses. Every movement will seem acrobatic and will make anyone wanting to start doing yoga sweat like a pig.
And that’s exactly why yoga for beginners should not be practiced alone! You’ll have to be guided, assisted by a professional yoga instructor.
Hence the need to resort to our tutors in Birmingham!
A millennials-old discipline originating in Buddhist India, tied to the cult of Shiva, “god of yoga”, Vishnu and Brahma, it’s not until the 20th century and the Christian era that yoga makes its way into western culture.
Yoga is a dynamic and complete discipline, where the lines between exercise and meditation are blurred.
Actually a type of meditative science, yoga is a discipline based on guided relaxation, whose primary aim is to unify body, mind and spirit, in order to improve your self-conscience and to gain back your vital energy, your inner peace and your positive thinking.
By the sequence of poses it imposes, and the idea of letting go and mindfulness meditation, relaxation yoga enters the domain of exercise by stimulating the muscles (via ab, glute, heavy breathing, and body cleansing and toning exercises) and improving the physical condition of the person practicing it.
We can thus call it a subtle form of exercising, and its daily practice combines physical exercise with anti-stress and self-awareness techniques.
In Birmingham, you can take hatha yoga, dynamic yoga, vinyasa yoga, lyengar yoga, traditional yoga or nidra yoga, kundalini yoga, or raja yoga lessons, among many others!
And the advantage is that you can do them at your own rhythm.
So many choices! How can you choose?
We understand. With so many different types of yoga, it’s easy to get lost.
But it’s just like with music or fitness classes - each discipline is made up of its own individual components.
The practice of yoga originated from the Hindu and Buddhist religions. Hindu legend has it that its practice was consolidated and revealed by Shiva, meaning that it more or less directly comes from an ancient Indian philosophy, called Tantrism, that managed to penetrate the different branches of Hinduism.
However, there’s no need to recite a mantra a hundred different times in order to practice yoga.
And, luckily, there are many benefits to doing yoga, even without blindly adopting the spiritual dogma and the countless religious rites.
So, what type of yoga should you choose?
Do you often feel stressed? Laughter yoga will drastically act against that stress and release your happiness hormones (or endorphins).
In order to beat insomnia, reduce anxiety and fight against depression, hatha yoga and nidra yoga will both get to the root of the problem.
The Indian professor and philosopher Tirumalai Krishnamacharya (1888-1989) is the founder of dynamic yoga, or hatha yoga, as we know and practice it today in yoga studios around the world.
Do you know about ashtanga yoga? It can help you lose weight, slim your figure and sculpt your body by a series of dynamic exercises.
If, on the other hand, you prefer more gentle and progressive yoga exercises, you should probably ask your instructor about iyengar yoga.
For spiritual people who are looking to improve their self-awareness and to train in meditation, jnana yoga and bhakti yoga are likely to be a better fit, as they focus on the mind more so than on physical exercise.
Other types of yoga can be adapted to the practitioner’s age, such as prenatal yoga, for pregnant women, yoga for seniors, yoga for kids, etc.
There’s nothing better than boosting your self-confidence by following a regime of non-violence and kindness.
After your yoga class, you should also give Ayurvedic massage and reflexology a try, to finish relaxing your body.
And what if taking yoga classes in Birmingham was in fact a springboard for then doing a yoga retreat in the South of India?
In Birmingham, we have about 3 yoga instructors currently available to give face-to-face lessons, and another 700 available to give online lessons via webcam.
All of our yoga instructors are competent, experienced, and fascinated by Southeastern Indian culture.
So, how to choose the right tutor, who will become your spiritual and physical energy coach?
Let’s first take a look at the different rates proposed on the Superprof platform.
Daily fees for face to face lessons range from £20 to £35. For online lessons, you can find tutors that propose a rate of £5 an hour, and others whose daily rate goes up to £80.
However, an instructor’s daily rate usually decreases if you choose to sign up for 5 or even 10 classes.
Since there is always a negotiation phase for any type of transaction, in order to gain a customer’s loyalty, many of our tutors also offer the first lesson for free.
The price can vary according to the type of class that’s offered.
In private one-on-one lessons, you’re paying the luxury of having a personal instructor, so the yoga is likely to be a lot more expensive than group classes, where the instructor can afford to reduce the price per person when they have a sufficient number of students.
Another factor that affects the price of lessons is the yoga instructor’s level of training. Some of our tutors have learned yoga in India, while others did their training in the UK.
We have instructors that have trained at various different yoga centres, we have professional dancers, self-appointed teachers that have earned their right to do so after multiple different trips to India and a series of individual yoga sessions with Indian yogis, etc.
However, an instructor’s rate and credentials (whether they have trained in vinyasa yoga or in ashtanga yoga, for example) aren’t enough.
Because, being the demanding students that we are, it’s important that the “feeling” is there between the student and the teacher.
This is key, especially as yoga touches upon both body and mind.
As a result, though we’re far from suggesting that individual yoga lessons are expendable and disposable, it’s better to find a new tutor if you just don’t get along with your current one.
The geographic area where an instructor is located can also be an important factor when choosing your personal yoga teacher, unless you prefer going with an online tutor.
Birmingham is a large enough city that making an instructor come give you yoga lessons in Northfield when they live in Sutton Four Oaks, for example, can take a lot of time and increase their travel expenses (gas, bus fare, etc.).
If you’re sure that you’re ready to commit to taking classes, and that you will do so diligently, then you’ll have to buy a yoga mat.
How to choose your yoga mat, you ask?
You should try to keep in mind the following criteria:
Now that you’re all equipped, you no longer have any excuse!
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