I always found backbends and inversions somewhat intimidating. Okay, slightly more than ‘somewhat intimidating’ and more like super petrifying but we shouldn’t get stuck on minor details. The thing is, I’m not super flexible and I didn’t tend to do that many backbends when going to university lectures, pubs nor while cleaning around my flat so of course I avoided Dharma classes for years. That is up until I committed to Yoga Blurbs and Dharma popped up on the schedule. So let’s dive in:
Dharma yoga offers an interesting approach to classical yoga and its fundamentals. It was created by Dharma Mittra in the 70s and includes progressive sequences of poses where everyone is invited to try each posture, no matter how challenging it might seem. This ‘try even if you fail’ approach and playful attitude towards obstacles make Dharma perfect for curious, high energy rulebreakers. During each class, you can expect a variety of intensive stretches, twists, backbends and inversions with an array of modifications suitable for beginners. Don’t kid yourself: dharma is hard work but also a quite fulfilling practice that leaves you very proud after surviving each class.
Dharma with Michael Wagner was challenging but also provided opportunities to rest between more demanding successions of poses. The short pauses in child’s pose also made it possible to regain focus and get rid of overbearing thoughts as well as to catch-up on unfamiliar poses. The pace was well adjusted to the participant’s needs and modifications of various poses were available throughout the class making it beginner-friendly. Michael was attentive to the students whenever possible and provided suitable tips and tricks on how to reach more complex poses. I loved his chatty start of the class where he made sure that all of the participant’s presences were welcomed and acknowledged.
The price of a drop-in online class with Michael at the Dharma Yoga St Albans is £7. For all additional information about the teacher and available classes, visit the official website https://www.dharmayoga.co.uk/.
Dharma Vinyasa with Ranta Averate was moderately faster-paced and accordingly more physically demanding. The class was live-streamed from a recently re-opened studio and it followed the standard dharma sequence with possible modifications on a personal basis. What I really liked in this class was that in a couple of instances there was a choice between doing an advanced pose or a more basic one (for example handstands vs. Warrior and Dolphin vs. Pincha). I somehow always ended up doing the latter ones because…well… handstands and I are like penguins and flying – it just doesn’t work. Anyhow, back to the class; Ranta made sure to find time for both students in the studio as well as the online participants and verbally guided the remote students whenever needed. That alone must have been tricky but she also found the time to demonstrate Instagram worthy poses all while maintaining a steady pace and a lively practice.
The price of a single online class with Ranta at Ranta Yoga is £12.95. For all additional information about the teacher and available classes, visit the official website https://rantayoga.com/.
I’d love to hear your thoughts and impressions! If you decide to try out some of the mentioned classes or if you know of other great Dharma classes available online, let me know in the ‘Comments’ section or send me an email.