What is Yoga?

Yoga originated in India over 2,000 years ago and has been known to change lives. The word “yoga” translates as “union,” with the implication of union of body, mind and soul as well as one’s connection to the universe. Hatha yoga focuses on body alignment, breath and relaxation to attain this union. Get a great, holistic workout that will improve your overall health and well-being as well as flexibility, strength and concentration.


What can Yoga do for me?

Yoga has been around in the East for such a long time that the health benefits it provides are just starting to get attention here. People with specific health ailments, such as asthma, hyper or hypothyroid conditions, arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, scoliosis, depression, irritable bowel syndrome, acid reflux and down's syndrome have improved their conditions through yoga.

In addition, yoga has been known to:

  • Reduce stress and muscle tension

  • Increase strength, flexibility and energy

  • Improve muscle tone

  • Strengthen your heart and lungs

  • Enhance concentration

  • Improve posture and overall balance

  • Strengthen your immune system


What is the difference between a group or private class?

A group can be as small as four students and as many as 50 depending on the location size. Private classes are usually one-on-one or one teacher with a couple or family. Private classes cost more, because the lesson is tailored to one person and the teacher can work individually on your goals, needs and challenges. In between, there are semi-private groups of a small, intimate size, usually four to eight students. Specialty classes, such as prenatal and mommy & baby tend to be smaller, because they require more attention and students benefit from a cozy community atmosphere.


Should I join a group class or have a private?

If you want to address your own individual health issues, private is ideal. Your teacher works one-on-one with you to achieve your goals, coordinating with your doctor(s) if necessary to create a therapeutic yoga program for healing and wellness. If time is an issue, sometimes private works out best, because time, day and length of the session can be tailored to your needs.


Group classes are usually open to anyone at any level of yoga, so beginners can learn a lot from classmates and the teacher, but may not get as much individual attention. Group classes can be more fun, because you will see more variations of poses and there is a community energy that develops within a group class that just isn't the same as a private class.


Again, semi-private or small group classes can offer the best of both worlds and if you can coordinate a group of friends or neighbors together, you'll already have a comfort level and great foundation for a yoga class.


How do I choose an instructor?

Find instructors that are certified and registered with the National Yoga Alliance. Though there are many great instructors that are not certified, the training required to be registered with Yoga Alliance is intense and the continuing education required by YA shows a commitment to excellence by the yoga teacher. For private instructors, it is vital that you feel comfortable with the person. If you can try out a group class at a studio or with a teacher, take advantage of that to help you decide.


Why choose Shanti Baby?

Michelle Kennedy is a Registered Yoga Teacher with the National Yoga Alliance and the International Association of Yoga Therapists. She is a Registered Specialized Prenatal Yoga Teacher and Registered Specialized Children's Yoga Teacher as well as a Reiki Master Teacher. Students say that her classes are fun, challenging and she has helped them recover from injuries, anxiety and low self-esteem. She consistently takes numerous specialty classes in the industry to sharpen and refine her skills and to share that with her students. Michelle's specialty areas are in prenatal, mommy & baby and restorative/therapeutic yoga. She also teaches group classes in Hatha Yoga and Vinyasa Yoga for adult students from beginners to advanced level.

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