Foundations of Hatha Yoga Course with Patrick Onacia
In this course students will go into the details of cultivating breath, concentration and core stability to support any hatha yoga asana practice.
Course open to all levels, including teachers, intermediate and advanced practitioners. Also recommended for those who regularly practice any modern hatha yoga asana traditions including Ashtanga (Mysore or led), Iyengar, Ishta, Sivananda and Anusara yoga.
Multiple recent studies show that a surprising number of long-term practitioners of yoga have been gradually developing serious injuries from yoga asana practiced without full awareness of proper alignment techniques related to each individual's unique physique. The injuries are turning up mostly in the joints, however along with other complications, there are also some cases in which even internal organ functions are being disrupted from lack of awareness and proper alignment. Although not physically obvious at first, medical studies show that a forceful yoga asana practice continued over many years can lead to chronic injuries that might be irreparable.
One of the main purposes of yoga is to balance and optimize health and wellbeing. This course aims to consolidate the fundamental aspects of the physical yoga asana practice in a way that is connected with subtle steps to raise awareness in order to help us become more sensitive to our particular body conditions and limitations. The objective is to help ensure that we are engaged in a life-long, continually evolving and essentially healthy yoga practice.
Week 1 - Foundation
This first session looks at pranayama (breathing practice) to cultivate concentration, economize energy, raise awareness and tone human physiology. Pranayama rhythms will include Ujjyai, Nadi Shodana and Brahmari. Students will also look at the utilization of Mula, Uddiyana, and Jalandhara bandha (energy locks) to promote core stability and efficient movement of energy in the body.
Week 2 - Cohesion
Where it is often a misconception that yoga is only about stretching, week 2 will analyze how to stabilize the 9 major body joint complexes by utilizing opposing muscle groups to support tendons, ligaments and cartilage in order to prevent potential injury. Various posture groups will be practiced with additional emphasis on details and alignment.
Week 3 - Empowerment
In modern yoga, inversions are often left out as many students have difficulties in effectively achieving them due to lack of understanding of the dynamics. This often leads to fear. This session will focus on inverted postures including headstand, handstand and forearm balance by emphasis on utilizing the whole body stability for a safe, energizing and empowering experience.
Week 4 - Consolidation
The effects and benefits of modern yoga in the fast paced world depend on awareness of the various aspects of practice. This session, will start with pranayama followed by dynamic asana consolidating the entire course content.