On a dark, damp, winter night, finding the motivation to get off the comfy sofa and head into town for a yoga class can be like having a mountain to climb. But trying a new yoga class, in a brand new yoga studio was all the motivation I needed. Sarah, our yoga instructor for the evening, has been running classes in Portobello under the name ‘Yogabeet’. Through Yogabeet, Sarah brings together her two passions: yoga and REAL food.
I first met Sarah at a yoga class held at Lululemon Athletica’s Showroom in Edinburgh. I loved her teaching style and was excited to see that starting in January 2015, she will be teaching yoga in a new city centre studio, ‘Yoga Mountain’. The class that I was abandoning my sofa for was a free taster to introduce her classes and the new venue.
The studio was easy to find at 1A Hill Street, right in the New Town. The building was undergoing some renovations and the large open studio on the top floor was the jewel in the crown. Yoga mountain is home to several yoga classes and is also used as a art studio, but tonight the easels and stools were pushed aside to make room for yoga mats.
The beautiful high ceilings had Georgian details including skylights that will flood the room with sunlight in the summer. Until then, Sarah had arranged gentle coloured lights that accented the architecture and created a calm, cool sanctuary.
There are so many different styles of yoga (to be explained in an upcoming post!) which is why there are so many classes on offer around Edinburgh. Different styles will suit different people; I’ve enjoyed trying different classes to find what’s right for me – and to vary the classes I do depending on my needs at the moment. Sometimes I want to chill out, relax, stretch and breathe. Sometimes I want a more dynamic class, combining strength with flexibility.
Sarah’s vinyasa yoga class was the perfect balance between these two extremes. The vinyasa style, links poses together creating a flowing sequence that helps warm the muscles and increase the heart rate. I find that some vinyasa classes move too quickly. I get sweaty, but I don’t always feel there is time to enjoy the posture and really feel a stretch. Sarah managed to achieve both. The sequence she chose used similar muscle groups really adding to the strength element; after warrior I, reverse warrior, warrior II, triangle, crescent lunge – my quads were feeling the challenge!!
Soon we were on to the seated postures. My quads had a rest but now my core was feeling the heat. The hour went so quickly and before I knew it we had reached shavasana – relaxation pose. Sarah’s gentle, calm voice guided us through the final relaxation – our breathing steady, the tension released from toe to head.
Sarah will be teaching 2 classes on Wednesdays at Yoga Mountain: a flowing vinyasa class followed by a more gentle, evening vinyasa class. For all of her classes, check out her Yogabeet timetable.