Free Yoga class and film screening

This coming Friday and Saturday (the 30th and 31st of March) Oscailt are holding  an open day (well two days actually). There is an extensive list of events scheduled, run by the various teachers and practitioners who use Oscailt as their base. The events include introductions to Mindfulness, Qigong, Pilates, Alexander Technique, Hypnosis, Tai-Chi and Yoga. It should be a great couple of days. See the full timetable for the two days at the bottom of the page.

We will be running two seperate events as part of the open days.

On Friday evening from 7pm to 8pm we will be hosting a screening of the documentary ‘Ashtanga New York’. For those of you who missed our screening of this in the Happy Pear a few months ago here is another chance to see this great film. The film follows our teacher, the late Shri K. Pattabhi Jois (the guru of Ashtanga yoga) and his family, as they hold two weeks of classes in New York City in September 2001. While there, they witnessed the September 11th attacks on the World Trade Centre. The film is both an introduction to the world of
Ashtanga Yoga and Pattabhi Jois, and a testament to the power of yoga in
times of great trauma. It was very well received the last time we showed it, so don’t miss it if you have any interest in yoga.

On Saturday morning at 10am we will be running a free introductory class on the fundamentals of Ashtanga Yoga. We will introduce all the main concepts involved in the practice including the specific breathing system (vinyasa), the postures (asana) and focusing the mind through the use of gazing points (drishti). You should leave with an understanding of the basics of Ashtanga, feeling relaxed and invigorated.

There are some yoga mats available at Oscailt but, if you have your own mat, bring it with you. Wear light, comfortable clothing which you are able to move in and be prepared to sweat. Ashtanga Yoga produces heat in the body which is said to purify the blood and bring all the toxins out.

Drop us a quick email through our contact page to let us know if you would like to attend either or both of these events.

For a full list of events at Oscailt’s open days click here.


Yoga Stops Traffick in Dublin

‘Yoga Stops Traffick’ in Dublin was a rip-roaring success thanks to everyone who came along (and also those of you who donated online).

Some donations are still coming in but we managed to collect around €1,000 to go to Odanadi (Update: The final total collected in Dublin is €1,208!).  It seems that the yoga practitioners of Dublin are a very generous bunch.

We want to say a HUGE thank you to everybody involved.

Although you may never meet the children of Odanadi you have surely made a massive difference to their lives and to those children who will be saved from slavery in the future. Congratulations. It is truly a wonderful thing that you all did.

It’s not too late to donate if you know of anyone else who would like to do so. Click on this link to Yoga Stops Traffick’s donation page.

We will be running another event in Dublin next year and hopefully we can make it an even bigger event and raise more awareness for the horror of human-trafficking. Meanwhile, thank you all again for helping with a cause which is so close to our hearts.

Namaste.

The wonderful participants at Yoga Stops Traffick in Dublin looking surprisingly fresh after 108 sun-salutations.




Yoga Stops Traffick in Dublin

‘Yoga Stops Traffick’ in Dublin was a rip-roaring success thanks to everyone who came along (and also those of you who donated online).

Some donations are still coming in but we managed to collect around €1,000 to go to Odanadi (Update: The final total collected in Dublin is €1,208!).  It seems that the yoga practitioners of Dublin are a very generous bunch.

We want to say a HUGE thank you to everybody involved.

Although you may never meet the children of Odanadi you have surely made a massive difference to their lives and to those children who will be saved from slavery in the future. Congratulations. It is truly a wonderful thing that you all did.

It’s not too late to donate if you know of anyone else who would like to do so. Click on this link to Yoga Stops Traffick’s donation page.

We will be running another event in Dublin next year and hopefully we can make it an even bigger event and raise more awareness for the horror of human-trafficking. Meanwhile, thank you all again for helping with a cause which is so close to our hearts.

Namaste.

The wonderful participants at Yoga Stops Traffick in Dublin looking surprisingly fresh after 108 sun-salutations.




Primary Series Asana Names

I have been meaning to add this to the site for a while now. Below is a list of all of the postures of primary series in a transliteration of the original Sanskrit.

I have taken the spelling of the asanas directly from a hand-out that was given to us by Lakshmish at the KPJAYI in Mysore.

  • sūryanamaskāra
  • pādāṅguṣṭāsana
  • pāda hastāsana
  • utthita trikoṇāsana (A+B)
  • utthita pārśvakonāsana (A+B)
  • prasārita pādottānāsana (A,B,C,D)
  • pārśvottānāsana
  • utthita hasta pādāṅguṣṭāsana
  • ardha baddha padmottānāsana
  • utkatāsana
  • vīrabhadrāsana
  • paścimattānāsana
  • pūrvattanāsana
  • ardha baddha padma paścimattānāsana
  • tiryaṅgmukha ekapāda paścimattānāsana
  • jānuśīrṣāsana
  • marīcāsana
  • nāvāsana
  • bhujapīḍāsana
  • kūrmāsana
  • supta kūrmāsana
  • garbha piṇḍāsana
  • kukkuṭāsana
  • baddha konāsana
  • upaviṣṭha konāsana
  • supta konāsana
  • supta pādāṅguṣṭāsana
  • ubhaya pādāṅguṣṭāsana
  • ūrdhva mukha paścimattānāsana
  • setu bandhāsana

Finishing Postures

  • ūrdhva dhanurāsana
  • salaṁba sarvāṅgāsana
  • halāsana
  • karṇa pīḍāsana
  • ūrdhva padmāsana
  • piṇḍāsana
  • matsyāsana
  • uttāna pādāsana
  • cakrāsana
  • śīrṣāsana
  • baddha padmāsana
  • yoga mudrā
  • padmāsana
  • utpluthiḥ

Articles, blogs and tweets of the week

Guy Donahaye’s article on food for yoga practitioners is well worth a read.

Neuroscientist Dr. Alex Korb wrote this article about effects of yoga practice on brain function. Yoga: Changing the brain’s stressful habits. And you thought it was just stretching!

@yogadork posted this interview with Tom Myers in which he speaks about yoga, rolfing and the medicine of the future

And finally,

This video advertising something (I’m not sure what) caused a bit of a stir. Some thought it was beautiful and others thought it was disgusting/degrading. Michael A. Stusser liked it enough to make his own version. We prefer the second one, just for the record.

 

 


Moving to a new Yoga Studio

Dear all,

It is with great sadness but also excitement that I write to you today.

I won’t bore you with the details of how this has come about but I have come to the realisation that it is time for me to move on from Greystones Yoga Studio.

I want to tell you all that it has been an amazing experience for me to meet and teach all of the wonderful students in Greystones. It has been one of the most rewarding and fulfilling years of my life so far, but, the time has come for me to stand on my own two feet and take complete control of running my own classes.

I leave on very good terms with Rionach and Greystones Yoga Studio and wish her the very best for the future of the studio. Rionach has decided to continue the early morning classes herself. Having discussed it at length with Rionach, we have decided that she will take over the classes from this Friday (the 27th of January). I apologise for the short notice but it seems to be the simplest and least messy solution for everybody.

From Sunday, February the 5th at 9am, I will begin my new life at Oscailt on Pembroke Road, Dublin 4 (Pembroke Road is a continuation of Baggot Street). Here is a map to the studio and a link to the Oscailt website. The schedule of morning classes will be the same as it was in Greystones (Monday to Friday from 7am to 9am, Sundays from 9am to 11am). We will be updating our website over the next day or two with all the details of the new space, times, prices etc.

I’d like to thank you all for your amazing support over the last year and for making it so easy for me to get up at 4am every day!

Best wishes and gratitude

Suzanne


Mysore Magic – Yoga at the Source

A new documentary, about Yoga at the KPJ Ashtanga Yoga Institute in Mysore, has just been released. Sharath showed the film to his students this week at his weekly conference so we can rest assured that it has his approval.

The film has many interviews with students at the Shala, articulating their reasons for travelling around the world to be there, at the source of the Ashtanga Yoga practice. Sharath appears in the film, speaking about his Grandfather Sri K Pattabhi Jois and also a little about ‘what is yoga’. The film-maker (Alex Medin) also interviews other residents of Mysore; officials and historians from the palace where Guruji and Krishnamcharya were teaching and members of the faculty at the Sanskrit College (where Guruji was a professor for many years).

Anytime we get to hear directly from Mysore, and in particular from our teacher Sharath, it is a blessing for us, here, on the other side of the world. It is great to see that Ashtanga Yoga is spreading to many corners of the world and films like this can only help in bringing the worldwide Ashtanga community together.

Watch the trailer or stream/download Mysore Magic – Yoga at the Source


Articles, Blogs and Tweets of the week

This is the first of a weekly roundup of some of the best yoga-related goings-on around the worldwide web.

  • Great notes from Sharath’s conference in Mysore, via Suzanne El-Safty’s blog. Many thanks to her for her great posts.


  • From @ayvic The Sages & Ancient Yogi Seers Knew This before Science could validate it. Youtube


  •  There’s been a storm (in a teacup?) over the last week due to a certain article which appeared in the New York Times. Many teachers have given their responses and @yogadork has kindly collated them all for us here along with a link to the original article.


  • David Robson of the Ashtanga Yoga centre of Toronto wrote a blog about Ujjayi breath, or lack of it. You may be surprised, I was.

 

  • Yoga Stops Traffick is an amazing worlwide event which is coming into its third year. This year it will be taking place on the 10th of March. Make a donation, roll out your mats and join us in 108 sun salutations (or as many as you can manage). You’ll really feel like your making an effort for those less fortunate than yourself. There’s a story from one of the founders of Odanadi here



Guruji and Ashtanga Yoga in the 1970s

I have just come across this, which seems to have done the rounds of a few teachers already. I got it from Ashtanga Yoga Victoria on twitter, who credit Tim Feldman of the Miami Life Centre. As you can see below it seems to have been shared by Christopher Conn in the first instance and written, of course, by Nancy Gilgoff.

‎”Ashtanga Yoga As It Was” by Nancy Gilgoff (via christopher conn)

Not much has been written down about the early days of Ashtanga Yoga when people like Nancy Gilgoff and David Williams, first generation of American Ashtanga Yoga practitioners, learned Ashtanga from Sri K Pattabhi Jois, affectionally known as Guruji. Nancy sent this out a few days ago and it’s very interesting to read what and how she was taught. This has been posted with Nancy’s permission. “Ashtanga Yoga As It Was (The Long and Short of It)” By Nancy Gilgoff.

The following is the way in which Guruji taught me, Nancy Gilgoff, the Primary and Intermediate series of Ashtanga Yoga during my first trip to Mysore, in 1973. David Williams and I stayed for four months that trip, and had two classes per day (excluding Saturdays and Moon days).

In the first class, I was taught to do five Surya Namaskara A, plus the three finishing postures – Yoga Mudrasana, Padmasana, and Tolasana. The second class, later that day, was five Surya Namaskara A and five Surya Namaskara B, plus the three finishing. In the next class, Guruji told me to only do three each of Surya Namaskara A and B, and to keep it that way in my practice, and then began adding on at least two postures per class, always with the three finishing at the end. Guruji taught me the standing postures through Parsvottanasana, with no Parivritta Trikonasana or Parivritta Parsvakonasana. After Parsvottanasana he had me jump through to Dandasana.

In the seated postures, there were a minimal number of vinyasas. There were no vinyasas between sides. Moreover, there were no vinyasas between variations – so all of Janu Sirsasana A, B, and C were done together (right side, left side of A, right, left of B, right, left of C), then a vinyasa before Marichyasana. Then all of the Marichyasana variations, A, B, C, and D, were done together, without vinyasas between sides or variations; then a vinyasa before three Navasana. Baddha Konasana, Upavishta Konasana, and Supta Konasana were also grouped together without vinyasas between them. Ubhaya Padangusthasana and Urdhva Mukha Paschimottanasana were also done together, with no vinyasa between – we were taught to simply change the hand position after Ubhaya Padangusthasana and go right into Urdhva Mukha Paschimottanasana.

After Setu Bandhasana, Guruji added in Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana and Ardha Baddha Padmottanasana – but to be put in the series back in the standing sequence, after Parsvottanasana. (Utkatasana and Virabhadrasana were not in the series at this point, nor were Parivritta Trikonasana or Parivritta Parsvakonasana, all of which were added in later.) Once Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana and Ardha Baddha Padmottanasana were taught and added into their place in the standing sequence, after Setu Bandhasana, Intermediate began immediately with Pashasana. In fact, David and I had no idea that there were two separate series until the end of that first four-month trip, when we were leaving, at which point Guruji gave us a sheet of paper with a list of the postures, which were listed as Primary, Intermediate, Advanced A, and Advanced B. At this point he told us to practice one series a day, and only once a day. While we had been with him in Mysore, we had learned both Primary and Intermediate series in the first two months. He had us practice both series, together, in entirety, twice a day.

Intermediate Series also contained fewer vinyasas back then. There were no vinyasas between sides (in Krounchasana, Bharadvajasana, Ardha Matsyendrasana, Eka Pada Sirsasana, Parighasana, and Gomukhasana). From Shalabhasana through Parsva Dhanurasana, the asanas were done in a group, with a vinyasa only at the end. Ushtrasana through Kapotasana also were done all together, with a vinyasa only after Kapotasana. The same went for Eka Pada Sirsasana through Yoganidrasana – there were no vinyasas until the Chakrasana after Yoganidrasana.

The Intermediate series, as Guruji taught it to us during that first trip, included Vrishchikasana after Karandavasana. We were taught to hold Pincha Mayurasana for five breaths, bring the legs into lotus and lower down into Karandavasana, hold five breaths, inhale up, and then exhale right into Vrishchikasana for five breaths. The series ended with Gomukhasana. David asked for more, and so, per his request, Guruji added Supta Urdhva Pada Vajrasana as well as the seven headstands –Baddha Hasta Sirsasana A, B, C, and D were taught first, with Mukta Hasta Sirsasana A, B, and C following. Guruji said these were from Fourth Series.

Backbends from both the floor (Urdhva Dhanurasana) and standing (“drop-backs”) were taught after Intermediate Series, as was the rest of the finishing sequence (Paschimottanasana, Salamba Sarvangasana, Halasana, Karnapidasana, Urdhva Padmasana, Pindasana, Matsyasana, Uttana Padasana, and Sirsasana). Up until this point, we had just been doing Yoga Mudrasana, Padmasana, and Tolasana at the end of our practice.

Guruji taught us Pranayama after we had learned the entire Intermediate Series (at the end of our third month in Mysore, about a month after learning all of Intermediate). I think it was when Guruji came to teach on Maui in 1980 (in Paia) that he added in so many vinyasas, while teaching led classes. When I asked him whether or not to do them in my own practice, as I had been practicing without – as he had taught me, he told me to add in the vinyasas to build my strength. By that trip in 1980 there was still no Parivritta Trikonasana, Parivritta Parsvakonasana, Utkatasana, or Virabhadrasana in the practice. (During another, later trip to the States, Guruji added in Parivritta Trikonasana and Parivritta Parsvakonasana. The next time he came back to Maui to teach, he saw us doing Parivritta Parsvakonasana, asked why we were doing it, and said that this was “crazy posture” and that we should take it out. But the whole Maui crew loved it so much that he said we could leave it in. (Utkatasana and Virabhadrasana were perhaps added in at some point in the late 1980’s.)

Originally there were five series: Primary, Intermediate, Advanced A, Advanced B, and the fifth was the “rishi” series.

 

So what are your thoughts on this? I’m very interested to hear what you all have to say about it – John

 


News

The shala is currently closed due to the Covid-19 crisis. Click here to join our online classes.

Click here to find out about our introductory classes. All proceeds go to Odanadi Seva Trust, a home for trafficked children in Mysore, India.

The next moon-day is Sunday the 5th of July. There are no classes on that day.

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  • (087) 2780 559
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