Guide for New Students
Before Your First Class
While most classes are on-going so you can start any time, a few of our offerings are progressive (i.e., each class builds on the one before and the patterns learned are more complex throughout the length of the series) and so do not permit drop-in students. Please consult the class descriptions or contact the teacher for details.
Prices for dropping into a class range from $10 to 15 per class, and a series of classes with a particular instructor are available at a savings.
* Kids are welcome to most classes for only $10 per class (ages 10-13 accompanied by parent/guardian, age 14+ anytime! Contact the instructor to pre-register.
Please arrive 15 minutes prior to your first class for registration and to take time to familiarize yourself with our beautiful, fully-equipped studios which includes mats and props (blocks, straps, sand bags, etc.), plenty of natural lighting, and lots of free parking right behind the building (accessible via Wells Street).
When to eat and drink. Allow at least one hour (snack) or three hours (meal) for between eating and practice. An empty stomach allows for deeper breathing and greater comfort in postures that involve compression of the abdomen. Consistent hydration throughout the day is better than drinking a large amount of water at once or immediately before or during class. Top of page
Hatha Yoga originated in India thousands of years ago. Ancient yogis developed a profound understanding of the interrelationship of mind and body and, over time, refined the classical postures and breathing exercises to optimize this connection. Yoga and meditation were practiced toward the larger goal of awakening to the true nature of existence.
The breath is the bridge between the mind and body. While practicing yoga postures, we focus on our breathing, as well as on conscious relaxation and increased body awareness. Like taking an "internal shower," the postures deeply infuse the body with fresh blood, oxygen, and vital energy. Top of page
Qigong exercises are the traditional Chinese exercise forms that develop Qi, your internal life energy, to strengthen bodily functions, invigorate the mind, treat illness, and help humans reach a greater potential. Numerous schools of Qigong exist, each employing a variety of practices including: vigorous movement, slow meditative movement, sitting and standing meditation, vibrational toning, breathing exercises, visualization, and internal awareness training.
For thousands of years Qigong has been continuously pursued and refined by masters and students in Taoist hermitages and Buddhist monasteries, and this inquiry has influenced many aspects of Chinese culture, such as acupuncture, feng shui, martial arts, sexual practices, and spiritual pursuits. Top of page
Joseph Pilates (pronounced puh-LAH-tees) was an inspired movement specialist who combined Yoga, Calisthenics, Dance, and Therapeutic exercises in a thoughtful and provoking way. His method of systematic practice of specific exercises coupled with focused breathing patterns is designed to stretch, strengthen, and balance the body. This training from the inside out with mindful attention to detail and form produces profound results when practiced regularly with a trained instructor. Top of page
T'ai Chi is an ancient Chinese system of physical exercise for health, vitality, longevity and self defense. It is an all embracing system of movement, meditation, and martial arts through which one can achieve harmony, integration and balance of body-mind-spirit, as well as between the individual and the Tao (the natural order of the universe). T'ai Chi's many health benefits include increased strength, energy, balance, mobility, flexibility and coordination, along with an improved ability to handle stress, better concentration, and improved posture.
About the Yang Short Form: The short yang-style T'ai Chi form developed by Professor Cheng Man-Ch'ing consists of 37 postures executed in a continuous, slow sequence. Complete relaxation, balance, and flowing motion are some of the principles that guide this practice. The form requires no special equipment. T'ai Chi offers a means of deeply relaxing while being alert and active.
Mindfulness is a quality of mind that brings non-judgmental attention to what arises moment to moment. This open attention can be applied to both inner and outer experience. Learning to be present to the full range of experience is a resource which can allow us to meet life with more clarity. As we explore the nature of our direct experience, welcoming whatever enters the field of awareness, it is possible to develop insight into circumstances and relationships. This insight gives us new possibilities for choosing our responses, rather than reacting from a place of fear or habit. Top of page
Authentic movement is a form of movement meditation, following the body’s impulse to move or to be still, and fostering the development of a non-judgmental witness to those impulses. It is about learning to be present with yourself, learning to trust your own intuition. Authentic movement is a simple process, originally developed by dance therapist Mary Starks Whitehouse, which can lead to personal insight and creative change. Explorations using writing or drawing are often included to bring form to the insights gathered through movement.
Continuum Movement is an extraordinary awakening to the fullness of what it means to be alive. Participants use audible breath to create resonant sounds and vibrations that stream through the body, and then experience a response of slow, nourishing, non-patterned, wave-like movements. In Continuum, we use sensation as our guide to profound relaxation, effortlessness, expansion, and the pleasure of connection, creativity and well-being. Continuum is easy to do, pain free, and infinitely adaptable to individual needs, regardless of oneís physical conditioning or level of physical compromise. People living with paralysis, cancer, MS, muscular dystrophy, Parkinsonís, cerebral palsy, trauma, post-surgical or post-radiation recovery, and all stages of pregnancy are able to reconnect to themselves and reclaim their own power by engaging with movements that their own bodies generate. Because of this, Continuum succeeds where most other bodywork, exercise or movement modalities cannot. Continuum is essential for those who wish to invigorate their lives with new ways of thinking, moving, and living.
for your interest in
Green River Yoga &
Green River Yoga
& Movement, 158 Main Street, 2nd Floor, Greenfield, MA 01301