SEPTEMBER 4, 2018
Many students have been curious as to what differentiates this class from others, as well as what to expect when they unroll their mat. Dawn Bayers, who has been teaching at Yoga Santosha for several years, is the gifted guide for this class. We had the opportunity to ask her a few questions and she graciously shared some insights into this weekly offering.
Why should students make time for this unique style of class?
Life is loud, life is busy – this class is the perfect way to unwind after a busy day; with a balance of movement, stillness and quiet, this class offers you the opportunity to re-energize and relax.
This class’s primary focus is on preparing the body and mind for meditation. It is the only class on the schedule that offers a strong meditation component with the opportunity to dive deeper into your breath and learn breathing techniques that you can practice both on and off your mat.
I love that the class caters to all levels. It is so nice to be held in a sacred space where we can move, unwind, breathe, and then be still. In your experience what can students expect to both experience and to feel during and after the class?
The class begins with an energetic flow to warm and settle the body, followed by Pranayama (breathing practices) to help quiet and steady the mind before we end in meditation.
You will feel energized but relaxed all at the same time. We take time to slow down body, breath and mind – allowing you to connect to the quiet that exists beneath the some 50,000 – 60,000 thoughts we have in a day. You will leave feeling refreshed and with a sense of clarity and ease of mind.
That’s a lot of thoughts! It is so important to rest into the space and allow some of those thoughts to settle and then to experience what lays beneath.
Dawn you teach this class so beautifully. Can you share with us what inspires you to teach a meditation class?
One of the many gifts yoga and meditation has brought into my life is a steadier mind; providing me with the ability to be more present and focused. I am very passionate about the power of meditation and really love slowing down and entering quiet.
My desire to learn more and dive deeper into meditation lead me to take a 50hr Meditation Teacher Training course where I explored and practiced various traditional meditation and breathing techniques. I have also spent time on silent retreats exploring a deeper sense of stillness and quiet. I truly enjoy sharing from my experience and facilitating meditation practices.
Can you explain a bit about what Pranayama is and what techniques you use in the class.
Pranayama is the conscious awareness of breath: the life force that both energizes and relaxes the body. The term is derived from the Sanskrit, prana, meaning “life force,” and ayama, meaning “extension.”
BKS Iyengar describes Pranayama as “a conscious prolongation of the inhalation, retention & exhalation.”
There are a wide variety of Pranayama techniques with numerous mental and physical health benefits. In this class we will explore techniques that are accessible and easy to learn. Techniques such as Sama Vritti (balanced breath), Nadi Sodhana (alternate nostril breathing), Brahmari: (bumble bee breath), and full-yogic breathing will be explored. Each technique will be guided with the opportunity to practice on your own.
The power of the breath is incredible. The breathing techniques you described can offer us an incredible opportunity for softening and clarity.
After the breath work we meditate. Can you please elaborate on how this portion of the class?
The class will end with a 15 minute guided meditation allowing for time in silence. Seated meditation postures will be taught with the option to use a wall for support or lie down if sitting is physically challenging.
Thank you Dawn for offering insight into this wonderful class.
Taking space, to feel and explore the space within is profound on so many levels. The healing benefits are incredible and immeasurable. We become stronger, and softer, more present and aware. We find more santosha (contentment).
We hope you are able take the time to move, to breathe, and to sit with Dawn soon and discover all the benefits for yourself.