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In your typical hatha yoga class, you’ll focus on yoga postures and positions, without any flow between each posture or position the instructor leads you through. You only need the very basic yoga skills to attend a Hatha class, as it’s very beginner-friendly, and the focus is on learning and relaxation, with a little bit of flexibility.
Hatha yoga, which was historically developed in the 1400s, has many benefits, including stress and pain relief. Some say that Hatha yoga has helped with their anxiety and depression, as well as sleep quality and menopause symptoms.
What can I expect in a hatha yoga class?
Most classes run around an hour and include a warm-up, a series of poses and then a meditation. While hatha yoga classes are considered “gentle” yoga and might not leave you in a sweat, they will still be somewhat of a challenge if you’ve never done yoga before.
A big part of hatha yoga is breathing and part of the warm-up period is focusing on your breathing and how to properly control it throughout the rest of your session. It’s important to pay attention during this instruction, as you’ll need to keep tabs on your breathing patterns when you complete the poses along with the class.
Most poses that hatha yoga focuses on are designed to help you gain strength, flexibility and overall balance. If you think a certain pose is too difficult for you, the instructor will often guide you through the pose and show you how to do a modified version that might work better for your skill level or body type.
After you go through all of the instructor’s chosen poses, the class typically ends with a brief meditation session.
Many people find that hatha yoga is a great gateway into harder, more challenging yoga classes, as well as a good complement to their other athletic endeavors, whether it be aerobics, strength training or a sport.
If you try one hatha yoga class and discover that the session moves a bit too slowly for you, rather than immediately skipping ahead to a more difficult yoga class, consider staying in the hatha yoga class a bit longer, as this could be an excellent way to develop your sense of stillness and patience.
Interested in giving Hatha Yoga a try? View the group fitness class timetable here to find a time that suits you.