Our weekend yoga retreat instructor Julia helps us get the very most from the basic (core) yoga postures to remind us what it’s all about.
There are three ways to experience instructor-led yoga at Watergate Bay, which are accessible for all abilities – on one of our weekly yoga classes, by booking a one-to-one session (please call 01637 861237) or on one of our weekend yoga retreats.
But whether you’ve been downward dogging for years or are a complete Yoga virgin, mastering and developing your understanding of the basic yoga poses is key to mastering and ultimately enjoying your practice.
Asana (posture) guide
As humans we tend to view the world from our heads, looking around and taking in information from the external world. There’s nothing wrong with this, after all it’s how we learn and interact with the world and others around us.
Yoga gives us the chance to step back from all the external stimulation, develop a greater understanding of our own bodies and minds, and reconnect with ourselves. So instead of looking out, try dropping your attention down through your heart and belly and feeling into your experience from the inside out.
All postures begin from a good foundation. The relationship of your body to the earth below and air above / around you is especially apparent in standing postures. From these good foundations, you can evolve ways of moving in daily life that will support your energy and vitality and be more in tune with your body’s nature.
Nine important postures
TADASANA – Mountain pose
Mountain pose can teach us all we need to know about posture, and when performed with full awareness it can become as comfortable as lying down!
SETU ASANA – Bridge pose
Relieves tiredness, calms the mind, opens the shoulders after desk work or driving, strengthens the legs and realigns the spine.
VIRABHADRASANA I & VIRABHADRASANA II – Warriors I & II
Builds strength and vitality, creating energy and poise. Tones the abdomen, legs, spine and arms. Helps to provide a positive mental attitude and sense of inner power.
TRIKONASANA – Triangle
An energising and heating posture, bringing suppleness to the lungs and side body. Also helps to reduce weight around the hips and strengthen leg and core muscles.
UTTANASANA – Standing forward fold
Soothing to the mind, relieving depression and over-stimulation. Tones the abdomen, relieving period pain and strengthening internal organs including liver, spleen and kidneys. Takes away the effects of gravity on the spine and refreshes the brain.
ADHO MUKHA SVANASANA – Downward facing dog
A wonderful posture that brings all-round vitality, strength, openness and alignment to the body. Downward facing dog also builds stamina and strength for more advanced poses. Ultimately, this becomes a beautiful rest pose!
MARICHYASANA III – Sage pose seated twist
Twists are one of the most beneficial of Yoga poses, realigning and bringing suppleness to the entire spinal column. They also promote digestion and the elimination of abdominal fat.
VRKSASANA – Tree pose
Balancing postures are as beneficial to the mind as the body. They help to develop focus and spatial awareness as well as realigning and redressing any imbalances in the body between sides. On an energetic level, they encourage the flow of prana (energy) to move evenly through each side of the body. The right side, Pingala, is said to be the masculine or action-oriented side; the left, Ida, is said to be the feminine or recuperative side. It can be interesting to notice which is more stable or dominant on any given day!
There are three ways to experience instructor-led yoga at Watergate Bay which are accessible for all abilities – on one of our weekly yoga classes, by booking a one-to-one session (please call 01637 861237) or on one of our weekend yoga retreats.