ashtanga yoga cheltenham

Ashtanga Yoga Cheltenham was established in 2020 by Emanuele Rossi after teaching for a number of years in various yoga studios in London, co-founded Ashtanga Yoga Oxford and The Breathing Space Italy and taught Mysore programmes as guest teacher in Tokyo and Dubai.

Ashtanga Yoga Cheltenham is a yoga school that tries to teach Ashtanga Yoga in a traditional way to keep alive the original feeling of learning and practicing yoga. We offer experienced and compassionate teaching. We believe Ashtanga Yoga is for everyone to enjoy and benefit from.

Ashtanga Yoga

Yoga is a philosophy of life which has the potential to create a healthy mind and body.

Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga practiced in its correct order of sequence gradually leads the practitioners to fully rediscover their potential at all levels of human awarness: physical, psychological and spiritual. Through this practice which unites correct breathing (Ujjayi breath), postures (Asanas) and focussing the gaze (Dristhi), a control of the senses and a deep awarness of oneself arise.  If this discipline is practiced regularly and with devotion, physical, mental stability and confidence are acquired.

Ashtanga” means eight limbs which are described by Patanjali as: Yama (Abstinence), Niyama (Accomplishment), Asana (Postures), Pranayama (Control of the breath), Pratyahara (Control of senses), Dharana (Concentration), Dhyana (Meditation), Samadhi (Contemplation).  These levels support each other.

The practice of asanas must be carried out properly for a correct and appropriate practice of the pranayama and represents a key in the development of the two previous levels, yamas and niyamas.  It’s only after having firmly rooted these four levels, that we can consider them orientated towards the external world, within us, that the other levels develop and evolve spontaneously with time.

Vinyasa means movement synchronized with breathing. Breathing is the heart of this discipline and links one asana to the other in a precise order.  By synchronizing movement with breathing and practicing Mula Bandha (contraction of the perineal/pelvic floor muscles) and Uddyana Bandha (contraction of the lower abdominal muscles) an internal heat is produced.  This heat purifies the muscles and organs, eliminating toxins and liberating beneficial hormones and mineral salts that can nurture the body, as the sweat is massaged into the body during the execution of the asanas.

The Vinyasa regulates breathing and ensures good blood circulation.  The result obtained is a strong and light body.  There are three groups of sequences in Ashtanga Yoga.  The first series (Yoga Chikitsa – yoga therapy) detox and aligns the body.  The intermediate series (Nadi Sodhana) purifies the nervous system by opening the energy channels.  The advanced series A, B, C and D (Sthira Bhaga) integrate greater strength and grace in the practice and require higher levels of suppleness and humility.  Each level must be fully developed before going onto the next stage and the sequential order of the asanas must be scrupulously respected.  Each posture is the preparation for the next one, developing the strength and the balance necessary to proceed.

Breathing: the continuity of a uniform and deep breathing technique must not be neglected in the Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga.  When breathing nurtures action and action nurtures posture, each movement becomes gentle, precise and perfectly stable.

Practice: it is said that without effort there can be no gain.  Strength, vigour and sweat are the unique aspects of this ancient and traditional form of yoga which apparently seems to contradict the western vision of yoga in general.

This practice is demanding and requires effort however it develops an enormous vital energy which circulates in the body, strengthening and purifying the nervous system.  The mind becomes lucid, clear and precise.