Below are some of the frequently asked questions. Click on each question to read the answer.
What are the benefits of doing yoga?
As an activity for the mind, body, and spirit, yoga has been helping humans since it originated at least 2,000 years ago. Regular yoga practice brings greater self-awareness, a sense of peace, and well-being, and more energy, strength, flexibility, and balance. Yoga, which means “union” or “joining”, promotes balance between opposites like between the mind and the body and between movement and stillness, and it helps reduce anxiety and stress.
What’s a typical class like?
Most classes start with calming and centering in a seated or supine position. Then they may include standing and more seated and supine poses – often, but not necessarily, in that order. Which poses are done and the level of difficulty will vary with the type of class and students’ condition. Most classes, regardless of type, end with some restorative poses, followed by a final period of relaxation in a pose called savasana. Expect a final few moments of centering in a seated position. Mediation and pranayama (breathwork) are mixed in throughout classes at the discretion of the instructor. Some classes provide a challenging workout while others are more restful and restorative, but all are done with the intention of increasing mindfulness.
What if I’ve never done yoga before?
Don't worry. There is a first class for every yoga student. Beginners are encouraged to attend Hatha Yoga, Gentle Yoga, or Yoga for Beginner classes. No matter which class you try first, tell your instructor that you are new to yoga, and we promise we'll take good care of you!
What if I don’t have a mat or I forget mine?
You can still practice without a mat. We do not have extra mats available to borrow or purchase. If you're shopping for a mat, try your local sporting goods store, or order one online. Our favorite mats are made by a company called Jade.
What yoga props do I need?
Many people practice yoga without props, but they can be very helpful for getting into or being more comfortably in yoga poses, particularly if you feel like you're not flexible. We recommend and frequently practice with 2 yoga blocks and 1 yoga strap. If you don't have a yoga strap, you can improvise and use a belt from a bathrobe or one like you'd use to hold up your pants. Likewise, if you don't have yoga blocks, you can often substitute a large hardback book. Other props that are nice to have are yoga blankets (substitute any blanket you have).
What should I wear to class?
Wear clothes that are loose and/or stretchy enough to permit you to move freely, but not so loose that they distract you as you move around. Layers are recommended – there are typically some active times during class when you may build up some heat and feel warm and times when you may be relaxing and feel cool. If practicing outdoors, please dress appropriately for the weather conditions.
Can I wear socks and shoes?
Yoga is traditionally practiced in bare feet, but you may wear socks if you prefer. Sometimes it’s nice to have socks to keep the feet warm during the relaxation portion of class in the winter. Please note that it can be more difficult to do some standing poses while wearing socks due to their tendency to slip on some mats.
What if I’m injured?
If you are recovering from a recent injury or have nagging effects from a past injury (such as, but not limited to pain or limited range of motion or strength), please tell your instructor prior to class so appropriate modifications can be provided to guide you in your practice. Yoga can be a powerful tool in facilitating healing after an injury and in preventing future injuries.
What if I'm too stiff to do yoga?
It's a common misconception that you have to already be flexible to do yoga. In fact, the less flexible you are, the more you have the potential to benefit from yoga! Our experienced instructors will give you options within different poses so that you can safely practice for however flexible you currently are. And remember, yoga is a "practice" - it takes time (aka more than just one class) to significantly increase flexibility although you may noticed some improvements within just a few classes.
What if I’m pregnant?
Shenandoah Yoga has offered Prenatal Yoga classes for pregnant women since the studio opened in 2006. Prenatal Yoga classes help pregnant women enjoy a more comfortable pregnancy and will help prepare her mind and body for labor and delivery and motherhood. Pregnant women typically begin taking Prenatal Yoga classes any time around the end of the first trimester or afterward. No previous yoga experience is required. While it is safe for most pregnant women to practice yoga, there are a few conditions that contra-indicate yoga practice, so we recommend that you consult your midwife or doctor prior to beginning a yoga practice. Preregistration is REQUIRED for all prenatal yoga classes by 24 hours prior to each class. Students with some knowledge of Prenatal Yoga are invited to also attend Hatha and Gentle Yoga classes although they should inform the instructor of their pregnancy so appropriate modifications can be given.
Am I too old to do yoga?
There is no such thing as too old to do yoga! Yes, older yoga students may not be able to do as many yoga poses as younger students; however, you can still do the breathing and meditation portions of the practice. Our experienced instructors can also give you options for ways you can modify many poses to be more accessible to you as you age. Please contact us to find out which classes are appropriate for you or to arrange private instruction.
Do you offer online classes?
Yes, in fact, most of our classes are currently taught online. Please visit Schedulicity.com for the most current online class schedule.
Do you offer in-person classes?
Yes, we offer some in-person classes outside on the patio behind Shenandoah Bicycle Company when the weather permits, typically between May and October. Please see Schedulicity.com for a current schedule of in-person classes. If conditions are too wet or too cold, classes convert to online format, and all pre-registered students are notified accordingly in advance of class.
When should I eat or drink relative to class?
Think of yoga like doing any other physical activity. You don’t want to eat or drink too much right before your practice, but you don’t want to be distracted by hunger either. Small, simple, and light meals and snacks are recommended. Everyone’s metabolism is different – some students may prefer to have a snack within minutes prior to class while others may find they wish to eat two to three hours in advance. Students are welcome to bring water in closed containers, such as water bottles, with them for use before, during and after class.
Will yoga conflict with my religion?
Yoga is not a religion. Because yoga increases one's self awareness, many yoga students find that yoga actually improves and strengthens their personal relationship with their chosen religion or life philosophy.
What is your COVID safety protocol?
Because we prioritize your health and safety, we follow CDC COVID guidelines for all in-person classes. If the CDC is recommending mask wearing for our local area, we will require masks. You are always welcome to wear a mask, even when they are not required.