Mysore & Ashtanga Program
Mysore is a self-led, teacher-supported form of practicing the Ashtanga Yoga method. At Mysore Santa Cruz, we encourage a practice that is in dynamic relationship with the individual’s ever shifting condition and needs.
In a Mysore class, you develop a close relationship with your teacher, your community, and yourself. You will be taught postures one at a time or in small groups and be asked to memorize the sequence, repeat portions of it to help you assimilate the information, and learn the series progressively and at a pace appropriate for you. If necessary, props are offered and your use of them encouraged. Over time, your understanding of the series grows and when you become more comfortable, new postures are added. You are welcome and encouraged to research and explore, after achieving basic proficiency in the sequence and form, but you are asked to not ‘do your own thing’. Discipline, focus, and meditative flow are some of the jewels of this particular form of practice, and too much deviation from the original form can dilute the potency of it. This process happens through mutual exploration and communication with your teacher.
In the beginning weeks, expect a practice that lasts up to 45 minutes. You will begin by learning the early stages of the basic form of the Primary Series: sun salutations, standing postures, seated postures, backbends, and inversions. There are six set series in Ashtanga, though most practitioners practice the first and second series. Our aim is to help you build a safe, absorbing, focused, and sustainable practice; one that facilitates continuous awakening from patterns and habits, and improves your quality of life. Learning in the communal setting, where each practitioner is absorbed in their own process while in wordless communication with each other can be incredibly effective, intense, lighthearted, and healing. Teaching happens largely through hands-on adjustments, space holding, and making suggestions. If you are not comfortable with hands on instruction, please let your teacher know. We are happy to accommodate. Mysore is appropriate for all ages (12 and up) and all abilities.
New To Mysore?
Interested in starting a Mysore practice, but don't know how to begin? Join Erika Abrahamian and a small group of fellow practitioners three times a week for one month in the mysore room, as you 'dive into the deep end'. During this time, Erika will guide your small group through the beginning postures of the primary series, help you modify based on your body and your needs, and help demystify the ashtanga practice. Because the immersion takes place during regular mysore hours, you will have ample time to get comfortable with the setting and the different aspects of the culture and method. These sessions will be enhanced with weekly emails, and chances to check in with Erika, where she will answer your questions and help you get in the flow of the mysore room and practice. You can expect to develop the beginnings of an independent practice that you can build on according to your specific needs and intentions.
**No more than 3 absences, please.
~Starts the first day of each month~
~Meets MWF 7:00-8:00 am~
~Duration 1 month~
~6 people maximum~
-You may arrive at any time to start your practice, as long as you can finish by 8:45 (backbends by 8:30).
-Please enter and leave the practice space as quietly and respectfully as possible.
-No water bottles or phones on the floor
-Practice in appropriate clothing is required (put something over your undergarments :) )
-Please make sure that your body, your yoga mat and towel, and your clothing are odor and scent free. Even essential oils are problematic for many people.
-You will most likely sweat. Please bring a towel.
-Do your part in creating an inclusive and safe space for everyone.
Due to the fact that instruction is personalized, and trust, learning, and relationship take time to develop, we ask that all new students start their practice with our:
Monthly Mysore Immersions
begins the first day of each month
Students with existing Mysore practices may drop in; you may enter the room at any time. Doors open at 5:45; instruction begins at 6:30. If you’d like to observe the room please email firstname.lastname@example.org.