Things to know before you start…

  • Do not bring a cell phone or pager into a studio.
    This doesn't mean turn off the ringer, because sooner or later you will forget. Just leave it in your car. If you really feel that you can't be out of touch for an hour and a half, this really indicates a serious imbalance in your life. Remember, 90 percent of stress is self-induced.
  • Practice on an empty stomach.
    We recommend that you do not eat for at least two to three hours before a yoga session. If a special condition prevents you from observing this practice, we suggest that you try to eat easily digested foods, i.e. fruit or yogurt, one hour before class.
  • Do not wear perfume.
  • Arrive a few minutes early.
  • Acquire and use your own yoga mat.
    Using public rental mats is not as hygienic.
  • Let go of the competitive mind-set.
    Yoga is absolutely non-competitive. It is not just a "work out," it is not just "cross-training." It is a spiritual practice which makes your body stronger, more flexible, and generally much healthier. The aim is to calm the mind, open the heart, and accelerate our spiritual evolution.
  • Keep your eyes on your own practice.
    When you can finish your own practice without knowing what the person next to you was wearing, or even who else was in the room, you'll know you were truly focused.
  • Be kind and loving to yourself by accepting where you are.
    Rest sometimes. "Do what you can, with what you have, with where you are." Remember: Wherever and whenever in our life we begin yoga, it’s the perfect time to do it. No experience or flexibility is needed.
  • Please mention any pre-existing injury or special condition to your teacher at the start of the class, so that they can help you.


Can you get injured practicing yoga?

In any type of exercise you can get injured -- that’s just the nature of the human body. Yoga is no exception to this rule, and therefore considerable emphasis should be placed on practicing safely. Safety in this sense is a matter of

  1. learning and applying technique, and
  2. being intelligent.

Again here, we go back to alignment. Alignment is not only the key to unlocking and correcting many injuries and imbalances, it is also the key to practicing safely. Most injuries from practicing yoga come from either a reckless, overeager student who wants to "get really deep into a pose", or a student who is simply unaware of how the body works, and therefore how it should be treated. Practicing asanas without paying attention to the structural position of the joints, is a bad idea. Every yoga posture, done correctly, is therapeutic. Iyengar-style Hatha Yoga is based on sound bio-mechanical principles that not only protect you from injury, but seek to heal existing injuries. Not only should you not get hurt, you should get better.


How long you hold a yoga pose is another conscious aspect of Yoga. Doing a yoga pose quickly, with many repetitions, will have a different effect than holding the same pose for three minutes, for example. In many cases we stay in poses for a length of time to allow our circulatory system and/or endocrine system to benefit. In other poses we may practice repetitions to free muscular tension or spinal imbalances.


Many styles of yoga practice the same sequence of yoga poses every time. The Iyengar method is unique in that it treats sequencing as an art and science that develops and deepens with longevity in the practice. For example, forward bends are calming to the nervous system, while backbends are exciting. Understanding the nature of the different poses gives us the ability to use different sequences for specific desired affects. In this way, the Iyengar yogi looks at sequencing in much the same way that an herbalist would look at herbal combinations. The synergy of the parts has everything to do with the end result. Mr. Iyengar has given specific guidelines regarding sequencing, for safety and effectiveness in practice.