Class Descriptions

We are dedicated to teaching yoga in the Hatha tradition. Many of our teachers have been trained in the style of Anusara yoga that has an emphasis on alignment, while some of other instructors have been trained in Iyengar, Yin and Ashtanga Yoga.

We provide a peaceful and friendly atmosphere with a nurturing environment for both students and teachers who want to explore and strengthen their bodies, minds and spirits.

Our type of Hatha yoga is deeply alignment oriented. We work with students of all ages, and levels of abilities.  We truly honor our students for their unique differences, limitations, and talents. Our deepest desire is for our students to reach their greatest potential in awakening their body, mind and spirit.

Hatha yoga is an ancient practice that helps build strength, flexibility and balance.  Students will be taught the fundamentals of asana (physical postures) and pranayama (the breath) and learn essential categories of poses such as standing poses, back bends, inversions, twists, hip openers, forward bends, and restorative. When done in balance, these categories of poses have specific health benefits that contribute to overall well-being.  No two classes are alike and there are no “same set” of postures.  Our classes will have a different focus each time whether it be physical, mental or spiritual.

Each class will also include time for reflection and meditation.  As the mind, body and spirit, are brought more deeply into their optimal state, energy will flow more easily, intelligently, and gracefully.

You do not need to purchase a yoga mat.  We have very fine Manduka and Prana mats available to use and do not charge extra for them.  We also have blocks, straps, and all sorts of other props.  Plus we have ample free parking and our lot is very well lit for your security.

Carefully read over the Class Descriptions when choosing a class to attend based on your knowledge and physical needs and abilities.  Should you have more questions about the level of classes or your own physical needs due to an injury or a condition, please do not hesitate to contact us via phone or email which can be found on our Contact Page.  You may refer to our Instructors Bios to learn more about our teachers’ backgrounds.

Click here to see inside our studio

Students frequently ask “where to do I start?”  

We have 39 classes per week and 9 different types of classes with 19 different instructors.  So its easy for a beginner not to be sure where they should start.   However, there are several classes we recommend.  Choosing a class depends upon what type of physical condition you are in and what you would like to receive from your class in a way that benefits you the most as a student.

For Absolute Beginners we recommend starting with Gentle.  There is a Gentle class almost every day of the week at a different time.  This class begins teaching you fundamental alignment and basic cues from the instructors.  

Senior Yoga and Yin Yoga are also great classes for any beginning student who has not worked out in years and/or has chronic conditions such as knee, hip, low back or shoulder pain.  Poses in these classes are done slowly and methodically with an emphasis on building strength and flexibility.  Try any of these classes or better yet, try all of them! Each class is a bit  different as each instructor teaches slightly different.  They are never the same class twice!

Basics is the beginning of power yoga.  This a slightly elevated level for beginners who are in good physical condition and can move slightly quicker. Here you are learning Sun Salutations, standing poses, forward bends and twists. Students must be able to push up to Down Dog from all fours and must be able to step forward from Down Dog into a lunge.

Core Balance is not yoga but a fitness class that any level of student would enjoy and is designed to compliment your yoga practice.

 Classes for Intermediate students are:

The Mixed Level Class is where you refine Level 1/2 poses and learn more challenging  Level 2/3 poses.  Other Intermediate options include Core Balance, Restorative, and Advanced Gentle. 

Intermediate Advanced students can attend all the above classes as well as Vinyasa Flo.  To attend Intermediate Advanced or Vinyasa Flow, students must have had 6 months to a year of solid practice and know Level 1-2 poses and their proper alignment.

Reservations are not required for regular weekly classes.  Your class package gains you entrance into any class on the regular weekly schedule.    Only special workshops require pre-enrollment.

For Pre Natal students, you may also want to try any of the Gentle, Yin, Restorative or even Seniors Yoga Classes.  These classes would compliment any Prenatal yoga practice.

If you are new to our studio, please arrive 15 minutes early so that you may fill out a new student registration form and we have time to enter you into the system.  We have included a PDF of that form just below this paragraph.

Our classes start on time so try not to be late.  Reservation are not needed for any regular class (only special workshops).  See our tuition page for class card pricing, especially our new student

Click here to print out a New Student Registration Form

Click here to sign up for Classes with Mind Body Online

Class Descriptions:   

(for days and times see “schedule”)

Senior Yoga:  Offers safe and enjoyable yoga and exercise program for seniors to have fun while improving strength, flexibility, balance, awareness, health and well being.  This class helps relieve stiff joints that can become rigid with age and builds a strong core for prevention of back injury.  With additional focus on safety and fall prevention, a knowledgeable and caring instructor offers numerous modifications to each exercise offered.  This class includes standing, seated and reclined exercises with very little pressure onto knees or wrists.  This warm and welcoming senior fitness class leaves the elderly student filled with gratitude and an appreciation for life long learning.

Gentle:  This class offers a “gentle” approach for those who have muscle or joint pain, stiffness, weakness, fatigue or recovering from a major illness or simply want to improve their flexibility and strength.  The class includes core work along with deep stretching, breathing exercises and therapeutic movements designed to increase range of motion without stressing joints.  The class also works on increasing strength and improving over all balance.  This class is good for beginners who have never done yoga or who have not worked out in a long time and have chronic pain or issues with back, shoulders, neck or knees.  Student must be able to get up from the floor without assistance.

Advanced Gentle: This class goes deeper than the regular Gentle Class offering more Level 2/3 poses and is ideal for any “Basic Students and up”.  Expect lots of stretching and flexing and holding the poses for a longer period of time.  Excellent for those who have chronic tightness or pain.  Some Restorative postures with props will be included in the class.

Basics:  This is the beginning level of learning power moves.  Here you will build confidence, strength, and endurance in all of the basic postures.  You will learn Sun Salutations, standing poses, hip openers, forward bends, and twists.  Students will also begin to learn preps for more advanced postures such as inversions, back bends and arm balances.  Students must be able to push up to a Down Dog.

Mixed Level Yoga: For various levels of students with at least 6 months of yoga experience.  This class contains a variety of categories of asanas including vinyasa flow, standing poses, preps for inversions, back bends and arm balances, along with forward bends and twists.  A fun and challenging class for any level of studentship.  Modifications are always provided!

Intermediate/Advanced Yoga: A faster paced and much more challenging class specifically designed for the experienced yogini who has had a full year of solid practice and has a full command of the alignment principles.   This class includes vinyasa flow, all types inversions, arm balances, and back bends along with Pranayama and meditation.  Students are expected to be able to kick up to a handstand at the wall and to push up to a full back bend unassisted in the middle of the room.

Vinyasa Flo:  This class is Intermediate Advanced!  Student must have a strong yoga practice of at least a year or more with a great understanding of proper alignment. Vinyasa Flo is movement synchronized to the breath and is sometimes called flow yoga, because of the smooth way that the poses run together and become like a dance. The breath becomes an important component because the teacher will instruct you to move from one pose to the next on an inhale or an exhale.  This style of class allows for a wide variety, but will almost certainly include sun salutations. Expect lots of movement, not just stretching.  Also expect back bends and inversions at this level.

Yin: Is a softer approach to yoga and the postures are held much longer than you might be used to.  This approach allows the more dense connective tissue (tendons and ligaments) to stretch.  Yin yoga is based on the Taoist concept of yin and yang.  When you take a Yin class, you’ll do mostly seated, supine or prone poses and hold them with your muscles relaxed for long periods of time – up to 5 minutes or more.  The theory behind this approach is that staying muscularly passive for long periods of time gently stretching connective tissue, which gets stiff and immobile with age.  The asanas focus mainly on the lower back and hips because the abundance of dense connective tissue around those joints requires extra care and attention. This class is good for all levels and also great for beginners.

Restorative:  Restorative yoga is a deeply relaxing style of yoga practice.  During this class, you are held in poses while being completely supported with blankets, blocks, or bolsters which helps achieve the desired benefit.  The poses are designed to open up your lungs, release tension in your lower back or any other benefit that aids in opening up the pranic energy flow in one’s body.  Here in the type of yoga you are encourage to “let go” and unwind thus eliminating stress and bringing harmony to the body.  Also a great class for beginners.

Core Balance:   A fantastic class to compliment any yoga practice!  Though this class is not yoga, it does work on building a foundation for quality movement in all planes of motion. Balance, breathing, core and gut stability, are the main focus here.  You will work with high density foam rollers, stretch bands, weighted balls and the weight of your own body to improve your strength and balance and the quality of your fascia.  This class can not be found anywhere else!  Improve your over all well being and strengthen your practice with foundational core exercises. Class is good for all levels.

The Practice:  Is a special two hour class held once a month on a Saturday afternoon for students who want to work more deeply toward inversions, back bends and arm balances as well as other Level 3-4 poses.  It is recommended for students who have at least six month’s to a year’s worth of solid yoga practice and are looking to further develop their knowledge and capabilities.  In this class, the student will also explore different types of Pranayama, relaxation, meditation and yoga nidra along with different chants and references to Pantanjali’s Yoga Sutras.  Modifications are always given.  Come and delve more deeply.

Pre Natal Yoga: A perfect class for those who are pregnant and want to be prepared for the birth of their baby.  Postures are designed to prepare the body and ease the delivery as well as pranayama (breathing) is practiced for aiding the delivery.  A real must for those who are pregnant.  We also recommend that pregnant yoginis try our Gentle Basics and Yin classes to round out their schedule.

Mommy Me:  A fun class developed for Moms and their little ones.  We accept newborns up to age 6 for this class.  If young baby can reside in carrier beside Mom as she works through her yoga practice.  Or if older, child may join in working out on their own mat.

Kids Yoga: Our Kids Yoga class is open to students age 5-14 years old.  Join us while we explore the world of yoga and all of its benefits in a structured yet fun practice.  In our kids yoga classes your child will learn how to practice yoga poses with proper alignment, breathing techniques, and how to focus and still the mind.  All students will need a permission slip signed by a parent to attend the class.  Kids Yoga is offered only in the summer months.

Yoga for Breast Cancer Survivors:  Sponsored by Memorial Hermann Hospital, The Woodlands Yoga Studio hosts a yoga class exclusively for Breast Cancers survivors.  Explore yoga’s benefits in a comfortable, supportive environment with an instructor who is also a survivor.  Studies show that yoga increases range of motion, lymphatic flow, and general well-being while decreasing stress and insomnia.  Experience peace, relaxation and vitality while having fun practicing easy yoga poses, centering, breathing, and moving in ways that are safe and feel healing. No  previous experience with yoga is needed. Mat/blanket/props are provided.  This class if FREE to all Breast Cancer Survivors.

Meditation:  Meditation is a tool for rediscovering the body’s own inner intelligence.  Practiced for thousands of years, its not about forcing the mind to be quiet, it’s about finding the silence that’s already there and making it a part of your life.  Practicing meditation on a daily basis allows us to weave silence and stillness into our mind and body to create a life of greater compassion and fulfillment.

 

Six Reasons to Practice Yoga in a Studio and Not On Your Laptop at Home.

With the proliferation of online yoga tutorials like YogaGlo, GaiamTV and even YouTube, more and more yogis are practicing at home in front of their laptops.

But as a yoga teacher who even has a few online videos of his own, I still find incredible value in attending class at a yoga studio with a group. In my opinion, the traditional drop-in yoga class is still the best place to practice yoga. Doing yoga at home in front of a screen might be convenient, but I think it’s far less effective and could potentially lead to injury.

Here are six reasons why you should keep taking yoga classes at your studio:

  1. Community

Yoga studios are not just big rooms with hardwood floors, but hubs of personal and spiritual growth. By attending a class you’re joining a large and far reaching community of teachers, students and scholars. In addition to classes, most studios also offer workshops, retreats and trainings, all of which are meant more to bring people closer together more than anything else.

It is easy to see the isolating effects of technology and the current loneliness epidemic that plagues the modern person. Unfortunately sitting at home alone, even doing the beautiful practice of yoga, fails to foster a sense of connection with others.

In Buddhism, the sangha, or community, is one of the three treasures that practitioners look toward for guidance and take refuge in during difficult times. I often say in my classes that, “We’re in all this together,” because by coming together in the sacred space of the studio, we keep each other accountable and support each other, even in the most difficult of postures.

  1. Correction

Here’s the tricky thing about yoga: your body doesn’t want to have correct alignment. Your body wants to slump into a couch (and sometimes eat that entire bag of chips). As a result, practicing yoga alone can have the potential to put the body into a position more prone to injury, and also reinforce bad habits.

Unless you have a wall full of mirrors in your bedroom, chances are that an experienced teacher is necessary to correct any misalignment in the poses, for beginners and even advanced practitioners alike.

Yoga teachers are not simply following a script, we are continually scanning the room and examining every body shape to see where students are lacking. Our verbal instructions are then customized exactly to what the room — and each body in the room — actually needs.

  1. Insight

Whether it’s before, during or after class, students are invited to talk to the teacher and ask them questions, when in a studio setting. And although the yoga teacher at your local gym might not be a sage guru fresh off the ashram, they’re still a source of valuable knowledge and wisdom.

Whether it’s a certain injury, pain in specific parts of the body or simply a desire to gain flexibility or strength in specific areas, your teacher is there to provide insight into the problem, or possible solutions to add to your practice.

Unlike school teachers you may have for only a semester or two, the relationship you have with your yoga teacher can build up and grow over many years. I have made many invaluable friendships with students of mine. It is amazing to see how much they have grown and how I myself have grown and learned from them.

  1. Focus

Unfortunately, it can be pretty easy to slack in your home yoga practice. There are certainly plenty of distractions! We wake up in the morning, roll out out the yoga mat and pop into a Downward Dog, only to notice our toenails need some trimming. But on the way to the bathroom for the nail clippers we notice that the cats have to be fed, and then our phone pings with five important emails that need our attention.

By removing the distractions of home and joining others in a dedicated space, your personal practice gets strengthened as well.

  1. Mindfulness

Practicing yoga with others can bring up an interesting challenge: self-judgement. When we lose our balance in Tree Pose while the person next to us barely breaks a sweat in a handstand, a lot of harsh judgement, comparisons and a desire to compete can come up.

Fortunately, these difficult moments provide the perfect time to practice mindfulness — the practice of approaching our present moment experience from a stance that is both nonjudgmental and nonreactive. It also entails accepting ourselves just as we are.

By letting go of the judgements that arise when we compare ourselves to others, we bring mindfulness and peace of mind into our daily lives.

  1. Touch

So this one is a bit of a guilty pleasure, but the advantage of being in a physical space with someone else is being able to enjoy the physical touch of someone else.

Savasana is already pretty blissful — but getting that last boost of oxytocin with the healing and loving touch of your teacher? That is a feeling is hard to top.