Sound Immersions

Sign up for our exploration of sound as a training form. Whether you’re an instructor or a practitioner, it’s like going to yoga school – without the tests/grades!

Encouraging Practice

The state of yoga (citta-vrtti-nirodhah) exists already.  It’s so close, in fact, it’s as if we’re sitting next to it; but it requires intense ardor to realize it (tivra-samveganam-asannah).

The means of realizing it are many but include movement, breath practices, directed attention, chanting, ritual, and study. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution though. Each person’s journey of discovery needs to be handcrafted.

For the Fall Semester of 2018, we have been experiencing the potency of integrating sound into our practice.

Stay tuned for what we have planned for 2019!

Exploring Movement

In group classes, you may be tempted to pause or rewind the flow of the practice to explore certain movements or positions more intimately. These workshops encourage that kind of close-up exploration.  Whether we choose as our point of entry a particular joint (e.g. shoulders, hips, the heel, etc.), a region (e.g. pelvic-core), a direction of movement (e.g. forward bending, side bending, twisting, etc.), or a global position (e.g. standing, sitting, on the belly, inverted, etc.), the aim of the series will be to enter through that particular gate of attention in order to become aware of the greater whole.

Encourage’s unique content will draw on an applied functional sciences perspective as well as from relevant insights borne from pain/movement science.

See movement-themed workshops 

Exploring Breath

Beyond the invitation to be aware of your breathing as you move or as you stay in various positions , there are other ways that “breathing as a practice” is utilized in the context of yoga. Pranayama practices – which describes both breath control and breath directed practices – are very influential on the quality of a practitioner’s attention.

A person could concentrate on the inhalation, the exhalation, the pauses/suspensions around both, the relative length of each,  or one’s breath capacity in general, etc., and each of these orientations would yield a different effect. The more breath-aware a practitioner is, the easier it becomes for that person to practice alone – and the easier it becomes to transition to a seated meditation practice.

See breath-themed workshops 

Exploring Attention

No matter what practice you take up in the course of your yoga studies, you’ll be engaged in the process of directing your attention towards something and then likely expand your awareness beyond that.  This is the expansiveness of yoga – it points beyond limits to an undifferentiated awareness (called purusha).

On the one hand, the proof of this vastness is all around us. On the other hand, our habitual ways of seeing and being in the world obscure this.

And yet through examination of texts (like the Yoga Sutras, et al), through chanting, through self-reflection, inquiry and reframing, through ritual practices, and through visualization, we can become more grounded in the reality of our life.

See attention-oriented workshops 

By tapping into the latest insights borne from movement research/functional anatomy and exploring ancient practices through modern eyes, you’ll find a practice that is both authentic and relevant to this time and place.