yamuna2Take a breath . . . inhale . . . be present . . . and exhale . . .

Yoga, meaning “to join” or “to unite”, is known to be the oldest physical 

discipline in existence dating back almost 5,000 years.

Yoga unites the practice of mastering postures (asanas), controlled breathing techniques (pranayama), and meditation (dhyana), creating an ultimate harmony between the body, breath and mind. With a dedicated practice, physical benefits include toning and strengthening the entire musculoskeletal system working not only the “core”, but the density of the bones, mobility of the joints, elasticity of the connective tissues and stimulation of the internal organs and nervous system. We offer different styles of this practice including Gentle Yoga, Yin Yoga and Flow (vinyasa) Yoga.

Beyond the physical, the benefits are truly far reaching as you will learn resiliency, gain a greater understanding and sense of being, and find peace in mastering stillness of the mind.

At Shelia Donovan Pilates Studio® we encompass all of these elements into an intelligent practice with an emphasis on correct and safe alignment of the postures with proper breathing techniques.

We invite you to experience a truly timeless yoga practice where you will leave feeling energized, supple and tranquil at the same time. We practice . . . with gratitude . . . with appreciation. We learn to let go, both on and off the mat . . . we practice yoga.

Students of all levels are welcome to participate in our yoga classes.  Classes are usually offered in scheduled sessions, but walk-ins are welcome. You will prefer to provide your own mat. We provide all the other necessary props including blocks, pads, straps, and blankets to help with modifications and proper alignment.

We encourage you to wear loose, comfortable clothing and bring a towel and water. For Flowing Yoga, the studio is heated silently by radiant heat to a “warm”, but not hot, 70 – 75 degrees to maximize the effects of the poses. Be sure to check our schedule for additional classes and workshops, too!

Flow Yoga

Vinyasa flow yoga links poses in a flowing series, incorporating our breath with every movement and posture. Vinyasa flow warms and energizes our bodies creating strength, flexibility, cardiovascular conditioning, and relaxation. It is a total mind, body, and spiritual connection, as well as a great workout. Special attention to alignment is included.

Gentle Yoga

The intention of a Gentle Yoga practice is to relax and rejuvenate the body, increase range of motion, integrate emotions, and bring a calm stillness to the mind.

A regular practice of yoga will increase body’s awareness and improve overall health and well-being. It is recommend that you enter into stretches slowly, deepening your breath as soon as you feel a stretch; and trust that a gentle stretch will provide the benefits you expect from yoga. Yoga helps release energy blocks in the body. Mild stimulation of the circulation, and a deepened state of relaxation profoundly rebalance and rejuvenate the entire organism.

Yin Yoga

Suitable for almost all levels of students, Yin Yoga is a perfect complement to the dynamic and muscular (yang) styles of yoga that emphasize internal heat, and the lengthening and contracting of our muscles. Yin Yoga generally targets the connective tissues of the hips, pelvis, and lower spine.

Restorative yoga + Meditation

Restorative Yoga is a therapeutic style of yoga which utilizes props to make it easier for the body to get into certain poses, and thus, surrender to the pose. Practicing poses using props provides a completely supportive environment for total relaxation. The more your body is supported in the poses the deeper the sense of relaxation. Relaxation is a state in which there is no movement, no effort, and the brain is quiet. Typically, Restorative poses are sustained for ten minutes or for as long as you are comfortable.

The antidote to stress is relaxation. Restorative yoga focuses on relaxation, renewal, effortlessness and ease. Blankets, bolsters, straps, and other props safely support the body in various postures which allows the body to move towards a state of balance. This practice soothes your nervous system, helps you quiet your mind and invites you to release deeply held tension. During these periods of deep relaxation you will be healed and nurtured from within.

Tai chi

T’ai Chi, which originated in China as a martial art, is a mind-body practice acknowledged by CAM (complementary and alternative medicine). Tai chi is sometimes referred to as “moving meditation”—the practitioners move their bodies slowly, gently, and with awareness, while breathing deeply. The roots of Tai chi’ are found in martial arts and the movements are at the heart of attack and defense. The slow and fluid movements of tai chi require concentration, control, co-ordination and balance. This combination of mental and physical activity works to harmonize the mind, body and spirit and promotes feelings of wellbeing. This makes tai chi an excellent choice for people who are bored by the repetitive nature of many other exercise systems. Tai chi exercises make an ideal complement to other sports such as golf, or other martial arts training as a warm up or warm down technique.

Tai Chi dates back to the 1600’s and is rooted in the internal martial arts. (Internal Martial Arts are defined as those who are non-aggressive and use principals of energy flow and softness vs. strength and hardness). The movements of Tai Chi originate from 5 key Family lineages each who had an idea of efficient and powerful movement. Each style has a meditative, fluid quality and choreography that is likened to “shadow boxing”. It should be noted that even though Tai Chi comes to us from the martial arts, most modern Tai Chi has evolved into more of a health and philosophical framework than a martial framework.

T’ai Chi Class Beginner to Multi-Level T’ai chi class includes gentle preparation exercises to warm up, strengthen and tone the body, standing meditation to calm down, activate energy and improve posture and a simple, clear movement and meditation sequence that conveys the most basic elements of body/mind coordination. Class lasts 1 hour.