It opened in its doors in 2016 and upon expansion in 2019, became the first Southern Highlands hot yoga studio.
I had a great chat with owner and operator, Teysha and found out all about its myriad benefits!
Q: Can you please explain the benefits of practising hot yoga?
A: Of course! My hot yoga studio is heated by Infrared Radiant Heat. There are many benefits from practicing in this environment, including the activation of Heat Shock Proteins.
These are incredible microscopic powerhouses that exist naturally within our cells. When cells undergo stress due to changes in temperature, they begin to break down, and one specific side effect is an abundance of proteins that remained under-developed. Heat Shock Protein numbers multiply when they are called into action and they act as a guide to ensure new proteins form the correct shape through development, making sure each step of the process occurs at the right time and in the right amounts. Basically we are tapping into the body’s natural ability to repair itself.
And of course, we are sweating, which helps flush wastes from the body through the skin, promotes a healthy complexion and reduces the symptoms of menopause, among many other amazing benefits.
The warmth in the room also stimulates blood flow, supports weight loss, improves metabolism and circulation, supports healing and pain relief, and releases endorphins – we call the last one the ‘hot yoga high!’
Q: You actually offer many different classes, each unique in its own way … What are the benefits of each?
I have trained in many different lineages and styles of Yoga and Pilate’s over the years and overall the benefits are countless. To me all Yoga is good Yoga!
A flow class in the lineage of Vinyasa brings the body into a state of physical strength, flexibility and vitality. It then brings the mind into a state of balance and stillness. Flow helps you to create a “container” for your movements and experiences in life. This moving meditation lowers stress and anxiety, increases stability and balance, calms the mind and strengthens all the systems in the body. It is a functional movement that improves posture, promotes heart health and unblocks stagnant energy. The practice also promotes proper breathing techniques and enhances cardiovascular health.
I also offer Warm Flow classes, which are the same, just with all the added benefits of the heat!
This practice is based on 26 powerful postures and two breathing techniques that are completed in a specific order. Be prepared to sweat – you’re in a room that is heated sometimes up to 38 degrees Celsius!
The class systematic and suitable and accessible for everybody of all levels of experience. It was originally adapted from the traditional 84 Hatha yoga postures. Each pose in the sequence of postures prepares you for the next and every following posture gains from the previous. The practice improves digestion, increases flexibility, increases energy and stamina, improves muscle tone, lowers blood pressure, supports weight loss, improves concentration, boosts immunity and reduces stress. It also stimulates the thyroid gland and flushes out every system in the body. Hot Yoga is so good for the complexion!
Peaceful yoga happens on Sunday, which is just perfect. It is a gentle class, designed for everyone. The class highlights the philosophies of Yoga and how to integrate your practice on the mat, as well as off. It is a bridge between moving in flow and staying stationary. You will find equilibrium and bliss in every pose.
Peaceful Yoga allows you to unwind and relax, as stress and tension drift away. It promotes new fresh energy and a recharge of your batteries. At the same time, it stretches and strengthens your body, calms and heals and promotes restful sleep. It also improves digestion and helps to lower blood pressure.
YIN & MEDITATION
In Yin Yoga, we hold a pose for between three to five minutes. It seems like a long time, but it’s so beneficial on every level!
Holding poses like this stimulates energy flow and opens and removes blockages within the energy pathways, or meridians, in the body. Yin allows you to come into an edge, become still and be with the sensations, helping you to find a physical depth in the pose. It improves flexibility, circulation and range of motion. The practice also works into the deeper layers of the connective tissues, calms the mind and aids in the practice of being present in the moment.
RESTORATIVE & MEDITATION
This class employs the safe support of various props and restorative postures. It promotes quietness in your mind and allows you to release deeply held tension, bringing in a state of harmony and balance.
The class includes breath work (pranayama), meditation, yoga Nidra. It allows you to switch off from the busyness of life and find a sense of calm that nourishes the body, mind, and spirit. It includes ‘active rest’ and the connection of body, mind and breath, which helps to heal and soothe your nervous system and promotes calmness. Other benefits include stress reduction and better stress response, mindfulness and introspection and the support of injury recovery.
INFERNO HOT PILATES
This is a relatively new, 60-minute class that is practiced in the hot room! It is a fun, high intensity interval training, full-body workout using Pilates principles. It’s safe for all fitness levels, because it’s low impact. The heat helps to elevate the heart rate, improving fitness and boosting the metabolism. It provides an insane calorie burn of up to 450 calories or more!
It also helps to creates long, lean muscle mass, improve overall fitness and prevent ‘Gluteal Amnesia’ or ‘Dead Butt Syndrome’. This is a condition results from the gluteal muscles essentially “forgetting” their main purpose, which is to support the pelvis and keep the body in proper alignment.
Q: You also offer teacher training. What qualities do you think one needs to be a yoga instructor? What can people expect from their teacher training?
There is a lot more to yoga teaching than just Asana postures. It’s not something that we do; it is part of who we are. Yoga is practiced on the mat, and also off it. It truly is a lifelong journey of self-discovery and transformation.
So, if you’re thinking of embarking in a yoga teaching journey, perhaps one of the first questions is to ask yourself, has yoga helped me? If the answer is ‘yes’, then ask yourself, ‘wouldn’t it be amazing if I could help others?’
Seva in yoga philosophy means “service” and becoming a yoga teacher is just that – service!
We serve ourselves on our yogic path by becoming the best versions of ourselves and connecting to the divine qualities within.
We serve others by practicing what we preach, being open to and sharing the knowledge that has been bestowed upon us.
I believe anyone can be a yoga instructor with the right dedication. We all have different experiences and personalities and therefore have different perspectives to offer.
If you practice what you preach, stay true to the yogic path and share what you have learnt. People can expect the unexpected. This is the beginning of your own unique journey. The journey of yoga looks different for everyone – avoid judgments, expectations and comparing, just continue to show up.
Q: What was it that drew you to a career in yoga yourself?
I have always loved and practiced yoga, and I especially love the way I feel after class. Originally, I was drawn to the physical aspects of yoga, as I worked in fitness centres as a personal trainer and instructor. My background is programs like Centergy and Body Balance, which are pre-choreographed yoga and Pilate’s inspired classes.
So, for me yoga teaching was a natural progression. I loved how it made me feel and I wanted to learn more. The desire to move deeper within myself and explore who I am, becoming reacquainted with my true self, was strong. I wanted to become comfortable in my body house, live from the heart and delve into the history and the teachings of yoga. The more I do and learn, the more I integrate the teachings into my life.
Q: What is it that you so love about your practice and indeed, teaching others and guiding them on their yoga journey?
I love that I have the opportunity to share this practice, which has so profoundly impacted my life. Witnessing the physical and mental transformations that people undergo through their regular practice of asana, meditation and pranayama is amazing. Every time I step into class, I feel enormous gratitude to the students for allowing me to guide them.
Q: There are a few different time frames for classes, from 60 – 75 – 90 minutes. Why is this and what benefit does each bring to the student?
The 90-minute class structure is the traditional way to practice the 26 postures and two breathing practices in a Hot yoga class. It has been scientifically designed and structured to offer an optimal transformational experience for both the body and the mind and therefore offers the maximum benefit.
However, not everyone has 90 minutes to spare and so the 60-minute classes were introduced into mainstream Hot Yoga for those who are on tight schedules yet would still like to do a class.
The 75-minute class is the most recently introduced and completes the range of time frames on offer.
Whilst the 90-minute class is ideal, being able to squeeze in a 60- or 75-minute class is still a blessing and you will still get the opportunity to explore and feel into your body, with each pose having its own function and flow into the next. Any time you can move your body is a real celebration!
If you’d like to know more about life in the beautiful Southern Highlands, please get in touch!