Chandra Yoga | Ashtanga Yoga Koukaki

If you wish to come practice at our shala, or just want to find out more about us and our classes, please contact us:

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Chandra Yoga © 2018
Design by: Johnny K. Studio
Photos by: Voursoukis Giorgos

— ASHTANGA YOGA KOUKAKI
lights
  • If you wish to start practicing with us, please drop us an e-mail first. Introduce yourselves, tell us about your previous experience in yoga, ask us questions.

 

  • For your first class, we ask that you reserve a spot, because we try to incorporate our new practitioners in the smoothest way possible. Please respect that, book your place in advance, and let us know if for some reason you can’t make it.

 

  • Beginners are extremely welcome. You don’t need to have previous experience or know the series – that’s why we are here for! Ask us to tell you what time is best for you to come.

 

  • Traveling practitioners are also very welcome. If you already practice Ashtanga and you’re happening to pass through our neighborhood, send us an e-mail suggesting the date and times you wish to come.

 

  • Monthly memberships refer to the current calendar month. We urge all practitioners to be very diligent with their accounts, so that our shala can continue to function smoothly.

 

  • ALL shala news are announced through e-mail, posted on our website, social media and of course, our bulletin board. If you can’t find what you’re looking for in any of these places, please ask away.
  • Please refer to our schedule regarding class times. Be as punctual as possible.

 

  • Before you enter, keep in mind that some practitioners might have already started their -silent- practice, so adjust accordingly. Enter quietly, leave your shoes at the shoe cabinet, and proceed to the changing room. Please turn off or silence your mobile phone. Speak (if necessary)and move quietly. Speaking on your mobile phone inside the shala is prohibited.

 

  • Inform your teacher about any health issues or injuries.

 

  • At the shala you will find mats that you can use on your first practices. However, we strongly urge practitioners to bring and use their own mat after a while.

 

  • Come to practice clean, in clean, simple and comfortable clothing. Ideally, your last meal should be at least 3 hours before practice. Come hydrated, but do not drink water during practice, and please do not bring water bottles inside the practice space. If you sweat a lot, bring along one, or more, towels.
  • In Ashtanga practice we move through a set sequence of poses that consists of 6 series – each one a bit more demanding than the previous. This is why the practice is different for each practitioner, in terms of length and difficulty.

 

  • In Mysore classes, each practitioner starts/does/finishes their practice at their own pace. A beginner will be introduced to the practice gradually, by learning the poses one by one with the help of the teacher. Their practice will be about an hour in the beginning, and will slowly start to grow from there.

 

  • Our practice is silent. Please, do not break your concentration by talking, unless there is a reason to. In that case, please don’t break the concentration of your fellow practitioners by talking loudly.

 

  • For the same reason, please don’t drag or dump your mat on the floor. Pick it up to move it, and place it quietly.

 

  • Show up often and consistently. Right now, we ask our practitioners for a minimum commitment of twice per week, but strive for more – you will see a huge difference in your practice. If you cannot come to the shala more than twice per week, practice at home, it’s the same thing.

 

  • Do not practice if you have a fever or you are contagious (both for your own sake and for the others’). Move mindfully if you are dealing with an injury. People on their periods, too. Or take some days off. Or if you are not sure, ask us.

 

  • Respect your body, give it time and patience. Listen to your intuition, trust it and cultivate it.

Our hope and goal, is for our shala to be first and foremost, a safe space to practice and one free of performance and competition.  To be a space where one feels empowered, supported, and accepted.

 

Teaching Mysore style includes giving physical adjustments that aim to either guide the practitioner to the fullest expression of the pose possible, or support them while doing it. Along with verbal queues, they are an invaluable tool for any teacher – whose goal should NOT be to do the pose instead of the practitioner, but to help them realize their potential.

 

However, if any practitioner feels triggered or uncomfortable by, or during physical adjustments, or for any reason does not want to be touched, at a particular moment or ever, they should feel free to turn them down, without having to explain themselves.

 

That being said, we encourage practitioners dealing with a physical injury, to let us know before or during practice, so that we are able to take it under consideration while giving adjustments or verbal queues.


 

In the Ashtanga method, the next pose is given to practitioners when they are ready, according to the teacher’s judgment. A practitioner is considered ready, not necessarily when the pose is perfect, but rather when it is steady and comfortable, the breathing is stable and not forceful, and the practitioner has been making a sincere and committed effort to take it to the place that is available to them, without attachment to results and to getting the next pose.

 

The teacher on the other hand is required to act, not as a strict enforcer of the rules or a perceived “correct method” but as an outside, objective and empathetic observant that can recognize when more effort can be made, but also adapt the method to each individual’s needs.

 

With much understanding and compassion, for we are also practitioners, we kindly request that you not ask us for the next pose, or when you are moving forward. Progress is slow, especially after a certain point. Yoga is not just asana, but also the inner work that one has to do when faced with themselves and their limitations, on and off the mat. Our goal is not to finish a series, but also to reach that point having learnt something about ourselves along the way, and through the daily struggle to find the space to grow. If you feel stuck, perhaps ask yourselves, first of all, whether you practice often enough. If the sincere answer to that is YES, then, by all means, talk to us about it.

 

We can’t stress enough that we might be teachers, but we are also flawed human beings. We are not omniscient and definitely not someone to surrender your power to. No one knows what’s best for you and your body better than you. We are here, at best, to lead by example, support, and nurture you through your journey, and the only way to do that is through honest and open communication.

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