Norman Blair's Yoga Classes
Strengthen the Knees and Back
This thereapeutic gentle yoga class helps to strengthen the back and knees to help prevent injury. Starting in constructive rest, then butterfly, the rest of the class is somatics to gently strengthen. But all done subtly and gently. After the lying down practice, at the beginning, there are standing exercises to strengthen the backs and knees. This class really is highly recommended for those with knee issues, to gently stretch the hips and tighten the knees. You may need blocks and a brick.
Yoga for Hips and Shoulders
If you've been working at a computer or spending time sitting whilst travelling, this class is the perfect antidote freeing your hips and shoulders and regaining mobility, gently. Most of this gentle hatha yoga class is seated and can even be done in a chair, stretching the shoulders. Then the hips practice is the second half and the hip stretches are butterfly pose variations on the floor. You'll need blocks (or books) and a blanket or towel and a strap.
Resting in the Yin
A gentle, nourishing and replenishing Yin yoga class in which we stay close to the ground, gently using our bolster to help us to twist gently and relax the organs. This class is perfect to practice before bed, or when we're feeling scattered, or overwhelmed, to help to calm, soothe and relax. You will need a bolster, or a fairly firm pillow, and bricks, or books.
Yin Yoga Hip Stretches
This Yin Yoga class is all on the ground about the hips, it's perfect for after a long day standing up, for athletic recovery, for after travel or for us sedentary workers who need to stretch out our often-tight hips. Class focuses on Dragonfly pose, which is legs wide when seated and coming forward. Starting with Butterfly pose, class then goes onto hold Dragonfly pose with variations. You may need blocks (or books), bolsters and belts (or dog leads!)
Morning Routine: Tap, Shake and Stretch
A perfect morning routine, suitable for all bodies. Start the day with shaking! Great for getting the blood circulating. Then some body tapping which wakes up the yin channels of the body and feels just great. Arm movements wake up the body, then Yin Yoga stretches on the ground to gently stretch out the body to wake up gently. You don't need a yoga mat.
Feel Soothed with Yin Yoga
A beautifully peaceful Yin Yoga Class which is soothing and grounding. Move the hips and spine whilst on the ground, feeling held and supported by the ground. Perfect for if your nerves are jangled or if you're feeling overwhelmed or anxious. Yin yoga is also perfect for athletes who need to stretch out, or those looking to settle and calm before bed or to calm the nerves before or after travel. You may need blankets, bolsters and a block.
The Yang Within The Yin
This Yin Yoga class has more of a yang feel to it. The holds are shorter, and we move off the ground. It's a great class to unravel a tight body in the morning, or as a mid-afternoon stretch break. Starting with dangling forward bend, then moving into squat and gentle movements to gently awaken the body. Then moving to gentle and mindful lunges, this is a Yin yoga class with more of a yang flavour. Perfect to gently unravel at any time of day. You'll need blocks (or a book), a strap.
Yin Yoga to Release and Let Go
In this classic and accessible yin yoga class, we can learn to release and let go. All the yin yoga poses are symmetrical and include butterfly, dragonfly, caterpillar, and child's pose. This is a reminder that as human beings we are all asymmetrical and we are all individual. A celebration of our “unique biology and our unique biography”. You may need a bolster, a block or a blanket.
Yin Yoga for Hip Happiness
This yin yoga class is all about the hips. Deep hip stretches are perfect for both those of us with more sedentary lifestyles, and those who workout, so this yin yoga for hips class is ideal for all. As yin yoga is much slower and oriented towards internal experience (rather than external appearance), it might possibly be described as a counter-cultural practice. Yin swims against the currents of superficiality and speed and constant consuming. Yin yoga requires patience, and helps to foster a connection to ourselves.
Restoring Yin Yoga
A restorative yin yoga class in which we learn how to relax into our bodies. This is a chance to fall in love with yoga props (pillows, books, blankets and possibly pets!), including exploring the joys of bolster hugging inspired by words from the 11th century meditation teacher Tilopa: “do nothing with the body but relax." A perfect class to calm, restore energy, and prepare the body for sleep.
Gently Restore Energy
This yin yoga class is unusual as it is based on bringing some yang into our yin. Unlike most yin yoga classes which are entirely floor based, this class starts with a standing forward bend, then moves into dragon pose, touching on energy channels and a more dynamic way of working with yin yoga energy. This is a great class for gently restoring energy after a busy day, or when an energy lift is needed.
Wake Up Shake Up: Tap and Stretch
Wake up, shake up, tap and stretch. This short and gentle movement class doesn't need a yoga mat or any equipment: perfect for when you're on the move or even in the office. Awaken, enliven and invigorate through shaking movements before tapping along the meridians, and moving through gentle stretches which are as invigorating as they are soothing and quietening. The focus is less on postural extremism and more on awareness of embodiment. A practice of interoception and inner attention. A great class for seniors or those with more limited mobility, recovering from surgery or times of illness. Inspired by disco and qigong.
Yin Yoga: Close to the Ground
In this Yin yoga class, all the poses are very close to the ground. We begin in constructive rest and we end in constructive rest. In between those places, we access the hips and stretch the thighs. This class is great for when you need to restore your energy levels, or at the end of the day when you're encouraging calm and preparing for sleep. You might need blocks, a strap and a blanket.
Heart Opening Yin
In yin yoga we hold poses for minutes. The poses in this heart-opening Yin Yoga class are focused on the heart meridian, and the poses will help you to open your shoulders and heart to all that life has to offer. Quietly energising, because most of the poses are back-bends, you may not want to do this class straight before sleep. A perfect antidote for after a long day’s work with the gentle energising and back and shoulder opening, this class will help you to settle into the evening. You may need two bricks or blocks, a bolster and a sandbag, but improvisation with cushions and books is also encouraged!
Finding Our Yin Foundations
Hip Yin Yoga: Above The Knees - Below The Navel
A hip-focused Yin Yoga class. In this class we replace intensity of form with length of time, so we hold shapes for minutes in order to move deeply from within. This hip-focused class is perfect for those of us with a sedentary lifestyle, who spend too much time seated, especially at desks or in the car, or for athletes, especially runners and cyclists who can suffer from tight hips, which can cause back troubles. You may need blocks, blankets, bricks and a bolster with this class.
Ashtanga Yoga Flow: Backbending
An Ashtanga yoga class featuring mostly standing poses and a focus on backbending. A wonderful, invigorating class, the perfect way to start the day. With sun salutations, standing poses and a few backbends, this is a wonderfully energising but accessible way of practicing Ashtanga. You may need bricks, a belt, a block and a blanket.
Ashtanga Yoga: Standing and Stabilising Poses
A mostly standing Ashtanga yoga class suitable for those newer to the Ashtanga practice.This sequence will get you stronger and more grounded as you stabilise. Starting with variations on sun salutations and then going through some of the Ashtanga standing poses in the primary series, the focus in this class is to make the ashtanga practice appropriate for you and with an emphasis on the practice energising your body in a way that is supportive and nourishing. You may need two bricks.