Yoga means ‘union’ or ‘connection’ and it stems back to ancient India, about 4000 years ago. In Sanskrit the word ‘yoga’ indicates any form of union. It can be seen as a state of connection or as a set of practices that allows us to experience more oneness. Modern yoga tends to focus more and more on the physical body. With it’s ever increasing popularity, new styles and forms of yoga pop-up all the time. And although there is nothing wrong with excercising postures during ‘heavy metal yoga’, ‘booty yoga’ or ‘naked yoga’.. the true spirit of yoga sometimes seems to get lost into that vast ocean of choice and trends.
Maija offers a variety of yoga practices. Some of them are rooted in ancient tradition, some are inspired by more modern techniques and philosphy. Pranayama (breathing techniques that culture the prana flow) and meditation are always integrated in her sessions, as they are an important key in connecting our mind and body to deeper levels of consciousness.
Hatha Yoga is a traditional form of yoga practice, using breathing awareness to gradually open up the body as it holds different asanas for a little longer. A consistent practice will eventually lead to mastery of the body and enable us to experience deeper levels of meditation.
The word ‘Hatha’ is a combination of the Sanskrit words for “sun” (ha) and “moon” (tha).
Traditional Tantra (Kaula) Yoga -as taught by Shri Kali Ashram in India- is an intelligent yoga system that taps into the ancient science of ayurveda and the Veda’s. The main asana practice is the ‘Tridosha Balancing series’. This is a fixed asana sequence, designed to culture the flow of prana and balance the hormonal system. Instead of building or stretching muscles, we focus on the more subtle energy levels. The main message is to “relax and be floppy”, dropping our conscious mind and allowing our whole self to meditate, even when we move through moments of discomfort.
‘Tridosha’ comes from Ayurveda and it defines the three fundamental energies- created by the five basic elements- that govern the functions of the body, on physical and emotional level. We know them as vata (wind and ether), pitta (fire and water) and kapha (earth and water).
Vinyasa Flow synchronizes breath with movement to flow from one asana -posture- to another, making use of creative sequences. The previous asana prepares our body for the next. Vinyasa flow can be dynamic and powerful, or gentle and nurturing. In Maija’s vinyasa, her love for dance becomes evident, bringing a touch of sensuality and grace into the flow.
The word ‘vinyasa’ is derived from the Sanskrit term ‘nyasa’, which means “to place” and the prefix ‘vi’, “in a special way”.
Yin-Yang Yoga makes use of the two opposite qualities ‘yin’ and ‘yang’. These seemingly opposite energies exist everywhere around us, in the universe and inside us. They can‘t be seen as separate. Without darkness there would not be light, and without female, the masculine would not exist. Usually the first half of a yin-yang session focuses on more dynamic, vinyasa style sequencing, building on the fiery quality of yang. In the second half we surrender into the soothing quality of yin, relaxing deeply into longer held poses and melting like water into deep meditation.