Class Descriptions

The following weekday classes are taught at the Yoga Shala:



                                   Older & Stiffer






Beginners – This class is for those new to yoga and for those who want to work on the basic poses which prepare the groundwork for more progressive yoga postures. There will be a focus on standing poses to bring awareness and to strengthen the legs and the back. The lessons will include seated postures and an introduction to the valuable chest opening and inverted poses on the syllabus. Each lesson will end with some restorative and restful postures.

Older & Stiffer – These are shorter lessons aimed at those whose age, stiffness or stamina means they need to work at a more considered pace. The yoga poses will be adapted to take into account the restrictions of the body so that both existing students and beginners will feel included and will benefit from taking part.

General – Students of all levels may attend these classes. The lessons will include basic poses as well as more progressive postures, depending on the level of those attending.

Intermediate – The Intermediate class is intended for students who have experience of Iyengar Yoga classes and have developed an understanding of the basic principles of Iyengar Yoga. These lessons will include progressive and more challenging poses to further the learning of each individual. A prerequisite for this class is that you should have reached the level of inverted asanas including headstand.

Teachers – These classes are for Iyengar Yoga qualified teachers and trainee teachers. We will work on various levels from basic to more advanced postures in order to encourage a wide practice of asanas and for better understanding and progress through the syllabus levels.

Remedial – These classes are aimed at those who already practice yoga and have a debilitating physical condition which means they are not best served in a regular class. Typical conditions are hip, knee, or shoulder problems, and back-ache, but other health issues may also be considered. To join the remedial class you will first have a one-to-one consultation with Sheila Haswell. During this session Sheila will put together a sequence of yoga postures specifically designed to benefit your condition. Subsequently you will work alongside other students in the remedial class but you will be working on the program devised for you. Other qualified teachers will be on hand to help you and the other participants in the class as and when required. The idea of these classes is that you learn to work with your condition in order that when practising yoga you do not exacerbate the problem, and so that you can return to regular classes when your condition is manageable. Depending on your situation you may be able to attend regular classes alongside these remedial sessions.

Antenatal – This class is for those who are pregnant and who want to practice yoga in a way that supports their pregnancy. Anyone who has been attending regular yoga classes can continue to attend those classes during their pregnancy and they will be guided in the best ways to work. However, this class will be taught specifically for the pregnant student. The aim is to teach safe practices which create space both for mum and baby, to maintain movement as the body changes and to give restorative poses and breathing techniques to support you during the whole nine months. Please contact Sheila if you are interested in attending this class. Please note that this class is not currently running.

Pranayama – This class is aimed at those who have at least two years of regular Iyengar yoga practice. It will include some restorative and preparatory poses but the aim is to teach the breathing techniques of pranayama. Pranayama is often translated as ‘prolongation of the breath and its restraint’ so we will be learning to watch, observe and control the breath. Disciplined breathing helps the mind to concentrate, and enables robust health.