Good Yoga

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Good Yoga

Postby Modus.Ponens » Sun Jun 01, 2014 1:08 am

Hello

I'm looking for good yoga classes, from as good yoga teachers as possible. So I would like to ask you what reputable and credible yoga masters do you know of? I ask this so that I can look for disciples of these masters in my country. Plus, do you have any advice to a yoga beginner like me?

Metta
And the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus, saying: "Behold now, bhikkhus, I exhort you: All compounded things are subject to vanish. Strive with earnestness!"
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby TheNoBSBuddhist » Sun Jun 01, 2014 5:25 am

Many people practise Yoga.
believe it or not, although Yoga 'is for everyone', not 'everyone is for Yoga'...

it depends on many factors.

Personally, I would research local classes and investigate reputation of teachers there. Then attend a given number of classes, to see whether you are compatible with the method and type of Yoga instructed.
As a beginner, if you have never practised Yoga at all, you need to begin gently and not accelerate the 'process'....

It may help to also purchase a good DVD with which you can practise at home.
A teacher may be able to recommend such a programme...



Finally, ask the teacher who taught them....

:namaste:
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby Virgo » Thu Jun 05, 2014 12:45 am

Hi. Buddhists have their own 'Yoga Sutras':

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an04/an04.010.niza.html

:namaste: Kevin
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby cooran » Thu Jun 05, 2014 2:04 am

My yoga teacher and her husband both have University degrees in Physiotheraphy and have both had yoga training in India.

With metta,
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---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby Modus.Ponens » Thu Jun 05, 2014 5:33 am

Isn't there something similar to the BuddhaNet world directory, where you can look at centers around the world from all traditions?

Cooran, can you tell me who they learned it with?

Thank you so far.
And the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus, saying: "Behold now, bhikkhus, I exhort you: All compounded things are subject to vanish. Strive with earnestness!"
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby waryoffolly » Sun Jun 22, 2014 3:26 pm

doyogawithme.com has some excellent introductory classes. Its entirely free, but remember to take it slowly learning proper technique etc. if you decide to do it on your own without a eacher.
I recommend Fiji's and Melissa's beginner classes.
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby Modus.Ponens » Sun Jun 22, 2014 4:21 pm

Thank you. :)
And the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus, saying: "Behold now, bhikkhus, I exhort you: All compounded things are subject to vanish. Strive with earnestness!"
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby bananaporridge » Sun Jun 22, 2014 6:47 pm

I learnt yoga at home using books by Iyengar or students of his.
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby Modus.Ponens » Sun Jun 22, 2014 8:23 pm

bananaporridge wrote:I learnt yoga at home using books by Iyengar or students of his.


Hello

What I'm concerned with are injuries, or undesirable side effects of asanas I don't quite know.

Have you ever had a bad experience like this?
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby bananaporridge » Sun Jun 22, 2014 11:08 pm

Hello,yes when I first started 7 years ago I pulled my hamstrings on several occasions by being too forceful in touching my head to my knees in forward bends.However I didn't suffer very much discomfort from this and was able to continue physically demanding building work at the time,the injuries only affected the limits of some movements in the yoga practice, which I saw as a good thing.The best advice of course is to go slowly and gently.I know for sure that even if I had been attending a class that I would have done the injuries anyway,given my over-enthusiastic attitude at the time.I go through stop start phases of a few months at a time,and Ive evolved and refined my practice.I find it very helpful when doing samatha-vipassana practice as a means of integrating the practice especially in changing posture.It fits in well with my satipatthana practice.I hope this helps.
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby Modus.Ponens » Mon Jun 23, 2014 5:52 am

It does help. Thank you. :)
And the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus, saying: "Behold now, bhikkhus, I exhort you: All compounded things are subject to vanish. Strive with earnestness!"
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby No_Mind » Mon Jul 07, 2014 4:41 am

I was a yoga champion in school. If you cannot find a teacher you can learn it alone. You do not need a teacher other than to show you the positions. You can find the positions in any good book or website and buy a video to show you how to do those moves or simply find the move on Youtube.

Internet offers vast yoga resources.

If you are more than 16 years old you will find it difficult at first since you have become stiff as you grew into adulthood. Never force yourself into it.

Why at all does one need a teacher - you need a teacher to show you which six asanas to do for that month. You need a teacher for selection of the "workout" and to show every new posture on the first day. But if you read up considerably (during the 2 months of stretching - see below) you should be able to substitute your learning for a teacher.

In last decade, various types of dynamic yoga (moving from one posture to another like tai chi) has become fashionable. Old way was 2 minutes of one asana followed by half minute of savasana (corpse posture) for 3 cycles times 6 asanas for a total of about 50 minutes.

Do not be taken in by its gentle nature. It can cause worse injury than a barbell. I have done both (still use barbell).

If you are a total newbie and overweight do not do yoga unless you have dropped your weight to near normal weight and have a flat or near flat stomach; it is advisable you do plain vanilla stretching (like track athletes) for 2 months before you begin yoga.

Always remember those who can best do yoga are no more than 20 years old (and began when 10). It is like gymnastics. After age 30, learning advanced moves will be nearly impossible except in rare cases. The joints do not usually allow such a range of movement in an adult unless they have been doing it from childhood. It is not possible to learn at 31 to stand and fold right leg back behind neck.

If you want some inspiration look at this video of "mallakhamb" (yoga poses done in rapid succession on a pole or ropes) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FTBrtifKYQ ( please do not try it at home ;) )

Please visit a doctor once before you begin yoga,

:anjali:
"I know one thing: that I know nothing"
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby Modus.Ponens » Mon Jul 07, 2014 7:00 am

Hello.

Thank you.

From what I gather, it's not so much how well you can do the physical position that matters, but the mental attitude during the position. I did yoga a long time ago in a place where it was not demanding at all. And it was very, very good. It was taught by a tibetan buddhist monk. And I knew people who did yoga at physicaly demanding places and it seemed that they almost didn't like the classes.
So advanced posture is not that important to me. A very good teacher who really knows what he's doing is more important to me.

I am taking care of my weight problem. It's going well. :) It shouldn't be much more time until I can do yoga well. I will try to incorporate more stretching in my exercise.
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby thepea » Mon Jul 07, 2014 1:48 pm

Hi Modus.Ponens,
Through Gaiam Rodney Yee has some great instructional Hatha yoga videos, they vary in degrees of difficulty. I find his voice soothing and his detail of the postures very good.
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby Viscid » Mon Jul 07, 2014 2:54 pm

Slightly off-topic, but I was impressed by this interview with Iyengar from the movie 'Enlighten Up' and how he developed his system:



Dude is 95 and still has immense vitality.
"What holds attention determines action." - William James
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby No_Mind » Mon Jul 07, 2014 3:03 pm

Modus.Ponens wrote:Hello.

Thank you.

From what I gather, it's not so much how well you can do the physical position that matters, but the mental attitude during the position. I did yoga a long time ago in a place where it was not demanding at all. And it was very, very good. It was taught by a tibetan buddhist monk. And I knew people who did yoga at physicaly demanding places and it seemed that they almost didn't like the classes.
So advanced posture is not that important to me. A very good teacher who really knows what he's doing is more important to me.

I am taking care of my weight problem. It's going well. :) It shouldn't be much more time until I can do yoga well. I will try to incorporate more stretching in my exercise.


With my fitness enthusiast's hat on (yoga, soccer, middle distance 5 km runner, swimmer in high school, weight lifting and bodybuilding between 18 - 25, back to runner and bodyweight strength training from 25 - 33, trying to become a runner again now at 40)

Why do you want to do yoga?

Yoga has 4 uses - repair some types of injuries if you are a professional athlete, help with managing problems like spondylosis (it is very effective in treating vertebral herniation), fitness activity for those who are full time yoga / fitness gurus (in the sense they will be doing it for whole life few hours a day), meditation (see below)

Yoga has no benefit on the mind (except when used as Hindu meditation, see below). It does not make you fit (in sense of reducing weight). Someone who has done it for decades from childhood may get some health benefits but anyone who is above 30 already has damaged liver, lungs, spleen, spine beyond repair even if they never drank or smoked. All humans above 30 have damaged their body and it cannot be restored to that of a 8 year old.

Hindu yoga gurus claim that it cures diabetes, thyroid problems etc. It is hard to see how an act of contortion can cure a gland of malfunction. Then no circus contortionist would ever have diabetes.

With my Buddhist hat on

This is not to discourage you but a sincere question since being a Buddhist you are used to mindfulness meditation. Yoga leads to another type of meditation entirely - Hindu school of meditation where the aim is to make the Kundalini rise from coccyx to forehead (mooladhara chakra to sahasrara chakra). Due to this the practitioner supposedly gets magical powers and under a proper guru may advance on the path of moksha (see hatha -----> feeder to raja yoga below)

Since magic is dismissed by Buddhism and even if magic happens it is another sanskara why would you want to wet your feet in that pond.

There is nothing yoga can do for you that running or working on elliptical along with serious stretching along with samatha cannot do (with less headache of having to learn a new system from scratch)

If you do not believe me google "Fauja Singh". He is a Sikh who began running at age 80 (because he was bored of looking after his grandchildren) and became a marathon runner. He is a healthy 103 now and still runs to keep fit. No offense to any yoga guru but I would like to see them run 5 km at age 60. At age 102 Fauja had to be convinced to give up his habit of running 10 km. He was not very happy about it. Yoga gurus claim an inner fitness (meaning their organs are better functioning; but there is no such proof that anyone who does yoga will have better endocrine system. Why not also say circus contortionists will never have diabetes then!!).

I am the guy whose nation is birthplace of yoga and I am the guy who is saying that yoga for a Buddhist is just adding to chores with no real improvement in benefit. If you were a Hindu who was interested in getting Kundalini to rise to sahasrara chakra .. I would have said go right ahead.

Just voicing aloud some points. No offense meant if you want to practice yoga.

:anjali:

Note - Yoga is not to be confused with yogi. Yogi is a person who uses any of the Hindu paths of moksha but usually used to mean hatha / raja yogi. There are 4 paths jnana yoga, bhakti yoga, raja yoga, karma yoga. The yoga you see is part of hatha yoga which is supposed to be a feeder into raja yoga. It is so complicated with numerous feedback loops in flow chart that I doubt any Indian at all understands it.

In its most esoteric form you can see hatha yoga in Tibetan Tumo meditation where they can make a wet blanket dry by heating up their body. But as a Buddhist we are not trying to make wet blankets dry.
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby Modus.Ponens » Mon Jul 07, 2014 7:12 pm

Hello

Well, I like to do things that kill two birds with one stone. For example, when I walk from (or to) home I practice mindfulness.

I need physical exercise, good health, mindfulness and samadhi. Yoga is a good way to practice in the direction of all of these goals, within one activity. Plus I would like to meet people with a spiritual aim. So it's a 5 in 1 activity.

As for meditation, I don't want to start a debate, because it isn't my purpose with this thread. I just don't think the yoga samadhi is much different from the buddhist samadhi.
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby No_Mind » Tue Jul 08, 2014 2:44 am

Just asking .. curiosity and not badgering .. proceeding to Samadhi means following eight limbs of yoga as laid out by Patanjali (he founded one of the six orthodox schools of Hindu philosophy)

    Yama: noninjury to others, truthfulness, nonstealing, continence, and noncovetousness
    Niyama (religious observances): purity of body and mind, contentment in all circumstances, self-discipline, self-study (contemplation), and devotion to God and guru
    Asana: right posture
    Pranayama: control of prana, the subtle life currents in the body
    Pratyahara: interiorization through withdrawal of the senses from external objects
    Dharana: focused concentration; holding the mind to one thought or object
    Dhyana: meditation, absorption in the vast perception of God in one of His infinite aspects — Bliss, Peace, Cosmic Light, Cosmic Sound, Love, Wisdom, etc. — all-pervading throughout the whole universe
    Samadhi: superconscious experience of the oneness of the individualized soul with Cosmic Spirit

There are many, many charlatans eager to grab money in this path. We read it in papers daily. The only one with a pedigree (I am trying to find ones that are in your geographical area) that I can mention are http://www.yogananda-srf.org/

Their founder was Paramhansa Yogananda (teacher of his teacher Babaji is like Theravada's Ajahn Chah). They have 5 centers in Portugal (I believe you are from there). It is doubtful if anyone they have sent there is very learned about the path. For that, after you know them you have pack your bags and stay at Haridwar for few months. They practice Kriya Yoga which leads to Samadhi. I doubt if they know how to get to Samadhi now (since the founder has died, but you can at least get some idea)

Very small circle of people know how to reach Samadhi and they all stay above the snow line in Himalayas in caves (just like other religions)

Good luck & Hope you path leads you to happiness and peace :hug:

One last word since you are my Dharmabuddy - Hindu Gurus have great hypnotic powers. In one hour session of talk they will make you feel like you are the happiest person on the planet and that all your worries have fallen away. Be careful of them. A British reporter for Discovery went to interview one and after an hour came out rambling "I can see, I can see". (and this from a Guru who had dyed his white hair black :? )
Last edited by No_Mind on Tue Jul 08, 2014 3:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby SarathW » Tue Jul 08, 2014 3:05 am

Hi No-mind
In regard to "My Buddhist hat on"
==========
Did you learn all this after join this forum?
If that so my hats of to you.
:bow:
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Re: Good Yoga

Postby No_Mind » Tue Jul 08, 2014 3:21 am

SarathW wrote:Hi No-mind
In regard to "My Buddhist hat on"
==========
Did you learn all this after join this forum?
If that so my hats of to you.
:bow:


"My Buddhist hat on" I was trying to understand why Modus wants to migrate to a Hindu school of philosophy. I was involved with Hindu practices (not stepped in the water but inspected the pond from a safe distance) from age 20 - 38. So I know few terms .. that is all. At some stage of encountering Hinduism (3 minutes to few hours) you are going to come face to face with idol worship. Idol worship puts me off. I never proceeded to go inside and investigate the Hindu way. For 200 years my family has been Advaitin Hindu. So some of it rubbed off.

It is very hard to be atheist / agnostic practicing Hindu (theoretically not possible). There are dozens of atheist non practicing Hindus (same as in Christianity in USA)

It is the same reason I do not aspire to Mahayana. Lot of bodhisattvas and all.

But it is his choice and I respect it.

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