LESS SWEAT, MORE GUIDANCE
At Inner Smile Yoga & Health, we favour a slower pace in most classes. This allows us to find appropriate modifications for any not-so-perfect body and fine-tune your technique before adding intensity. In the more advanced classes, longer holds or repeating the same small move for a longer period of time adds to the challenge.
Please use the class description and level indication as a guide when choosing your first class.
Need assistance? Call us on 03 8529 3224 or email us.
The moves and poses of Kundalini Yoga are largely different to those of Hatha-based yoga (what you commonly see on social media). Rhythm is the key - in form of repetitive movements, breath patterns, rhythmic recitation of mantras/affirmations, or sound. Kundalini Yoga aims to synchronize the body's natural rhythms in order to restore its innate healing capacities. Furthermore, the multi-faceted nature of the exercises is an excellent training for the brain (think neuroplasticity), which balances the entire nervous system. Perfect to de-stress and clear your mind!
Most Kundalini classes are beginner-friendly as each student can move at their own pace and level of intensity. You will not fall behind: The different exercises are typically practiced for 1-3 minutes each, followed by a short rest. If you struggle to perfom a move for the advised time, you can always take a break and join back in when you feel ready to continue. The Saturday class (indicated as "strong") aims at students with some Kundalini yoga experience or those who are prpared for a challenge.
Intensity: moderate; Saturdays: strong
Level: all; experienced students are invited to increase pace or try more challenging variations where suitable
While a meditation may be part of a regular Kundalini session, this meditation class is an opportunity to dive deeper into the world of Kundalini meditation and its benefits. Kundalini meditation is a lot more than just sitting still and focusing on the breath! Be prepared to move in a rhythmic fashion, practise different breathing patterns, or work with sounds and mantras. All sessions have a specific theme or focus. Typically, we start with a "tune-in" (body & breath awareness) and some preparatory stretches/moves, before we begin with the meditation. The moditation itself takes about 30 minutes, followed by a longer rest or a period of silence before we conclude the session.
Intensity: gentle – medium
TIP: Although not a prerequisite, it is helpful to have some Kundalini Yoga experience before joining this class.
Hatha Yoga is an umbrella-term for the postural yoga which you commonly see these days. Today, there are many branches that differ enormously in pace and intensity. Our approach is rooted in the traditional lineage of Sivananda Yoga, which favours a slower pace with a strong focus on breath and body/mind awareness throughout. The traditional sequence works literally from head to toe, increases blood & lymph circulation, and mobilises all sections of the spine.
Our Hatha Yoga classes come in five different ways, each with a different focus, and taking into account the time of the day. You may use the descriptions below to complement/balance your existing exercises routines.
The "Complete Practice" follows the traditional sequence of 12 poses (and their variations) plus breath work, eye exercises and a guided relaxation at the end.
HATHA YOGA - gentle/restorative
This slow-paced and largely floor-based class is ideal to wind down after a stressful/exhausting day. The focus is on releasing tension from the body through gentle practices. These can include gentle rocking moves, the use of props to support the body, occasional self-massage, or staying longer in a (supported) position to explore subtle movements or sensations within the body.
TIP: Very active people, or may find this class quite challenging! In this case, you best attend one of the general Hatha yoga classes first (see descriptions below). If you have trouble to sit on/get up from the floor, Tibetan Yoga might be a better choice as most moves can be practised while sitting on a chair. People with back problems may also have a look at our "Yoga for Sensitive Backs".
HATHA YOGA - general
This class offers both standing (= energising/toning) as well as floor-based (= calming/releasing) exercises that help to bring balance to the physical body, its subtle systems, and the mind. The aim is to "reset" body & mind - bringing them back into a balanced, neutral state.
We typically work through the whole body, often playing with the opposites such as left/right, front/back, movement/stillness. We may also consider imbalances that are related to the time of the day or the seasons.
HATHA YOGA - strong
Similar to the general Hatha classes, but this class includes more standing poses and stronger, more advanced variations of the regular moves. Longer holds add to the challenge and can turn even a "simple" pose into an unexpectedly intense experience. Staying focused is the key!
TIP: We recommend that you already have some yoga experience and a general understanding of postural alignment before attending this class.
HATHA YOGA - Rise & Shine
Our early morning classes are designed set you up for the whole day: Starting with body awareness & breath work, we then move through several rounds of the Sun Salutation (including variations of the traditional flow), followed by a selection of energising and uplifting moves/poses. The session concludes with a shorter relaxation and a few minutes of stillness that allow you to set your intentions for the day.
Intensity: moderate - strong
TIP: If you are new to yoga and have no regular exercise routine, we recommend attending a couple of slower classes before signing up to this one as you may find the Sun Salutations quite challenging, especially if you have knee or back issues. In that case you may try our "Yoga for Sensitive Backs".
BEACH YOGA (Hatha/Kundalini)
An invigorating morning practice with a view: In the summer months (October - March), the early morning classes become "Beach Yoga" as we practise outdoors on Altona Beach. Be surprised how different the same practice feels on uneven ground and being exposed to the elements! Watching the sunrise alone is an incredible experience, but in combination with yoga it’s just unbeatable!
In case of rain or strong winds and in the winter months we move indoors so that you can maintain a consistent practice.
TIP: Make sure to book online so that we can inform you of last minute changes to the location!
Our Prenatal yoga classes are designed to meet the needs and challenges of mums-to-be in all stages of pregnancy and include both Hatha and Kundalini Yoga.
While Hatha yoga has a focus on good posture and healthy movement habits, Kundalini Yoga is particularly helpful for stress relief, focus and a positive mindset. We address common issues such as SPD (Symphysis Pubis Disorder) or back pain, and practise various moves and breathing techniques that can be helpful during labour.
Intensity: gentle – moderate
Level: all; no previous yoga experience required