Class Descriptions

Descriptions of Classes at Loka Yoga

Loka Yoga offers classes in the vinyasa krama tradition. This is a form of yoga that marries breath and movement. The primary importance in the practice is coming into an awareness of your breath/prana through movement. The philosophy that you must "start where you are" is implemented at all times. All teachers at the studio have experience and are trained in this method. Please read the section on Beginner's Mind and Child's Pose if you are new to either Yoga or our studio.

Gentle Flow
This is a yoga basics class involving simple poses and linking breath with movement. Class starts with a short meditation, and some pranayama/breath work will be incorporated into the class. It is a great class for absolute beginners, advancing beginners, and regular practitioners who are feeling like they could benefit from a "back to basics" or a more gentle vinyasa practice today. Please let the teacher know if you have any injuries.

Vinyasa All Levels
Good for beginners and everyone else!

Vinyasa 1-3 
This is a general and intermediate class for most levels, including advancing beginners with general body awareness and/or good listening skills. It offers more variety for those in the class who wish to try something a little more challenging than an Intro class. Variations are offered all along the way so most levels will feel comfortable and accommodated to suit their needs. Could potentially be frustrating for first timers, teachers might not have time to break down every pose for perfect alignment instruction.

Alignment Through Asana
For those who wish to have a greater understanding of kinetics and anatomy in their asana practice. The class helps practitioners focus with a greater sensitivity on of how the body works in relationship to traditional postures and breathing.

Restorative Yoga
This gentle practice uses props and longer passive holds to initiate the deep relaxation of the body, mind and spirit. Restorative is appropriate for all students seeking the benefits of a relaxing, gentle and refreshing practice. Deep restorative work improves range of motion and joint mobility, reduces pain and the effects of stress. Students with injuries, arthritis or other chronic conditions, limitations related to age or size will benefit from this practice. No prior yoga experience required. Restorative Yoga is highly recommended as a balancing practice for yogis with a regular and vigorous yoga practice. Our Friday Night Restorative class is the perfect way to unwind after a stressful week.

Decompression Yoga
 This hatha yoga based class is about unwinding our bodies and our brains from all the stimulation in the outside world. The 75 minute practice will be a reminder to take care of ourselves by slowing down and paying attention. It offers the relaxing experience of long restorative poses with lots of delicious props and blankets, and uses gentle techniques done on the floor to mobilize joints and reduce fatigue in the body. We will be nourishing the parasympathetic nervous system through releasing holding patterns in the body through breathwork and observing the movement of blood and energy in our bodies. We will develop a deep inner listening in order to heighten our proprioceptive awareness. Join us if you’re looking for a meditative experience that will leave you feeling revitalized and realigned.

Deep Mindful Flow
Many of us live a lifestyle that asks us to move quickly...we are often rushed and very "busy."
In this practice we will flow...the flow will be slow, deep and mindful. We will hold postures for longer periods of time in order to really feel the depth of each shape. The breath practice (Pranayama) is key in this practice! Here we will take space in between the postures and in between the breath ~ we will practice being more interested in the transition between poses than in "getting into the pose".
You will be encouraged and supported in creating a more profound practice - we will sit together, chant together, breathe together and move together.

Vigorous Vinyasa
Have you been practicing for at least a year and feel confident that you know your yoga basics? Then come have some fun in this class! This is a faster moving class for all level practitioners excluding complete beginners. The sequences typically move at a faster pace and could possibly include arm balances, inversions and back bends, but with simple variations offered first. This class is challenging but not necessarily "tricky," meaning you will sweat and be encouraged to push yourself a bit but the poses and variations are available to all levels of yogis.

Vinyasa 2-3
This is an advanced level class for more seasoned practitioners. The sequences typically move at a faster pace and may include arm balances, inversions and back bends. Often times kriya (cleansing practices) and bhandas will be explored. This class is not suitable for people new to yoga. If you are pregnant, even if you have been practicing 3x a week for 10 years, this might not be the best class for you, please check with the teacher before class. *(see pregnancy note below)

*Pregnancy note:

Deep twists, abdominal work, and breath retention are never appropriate during pregnancy. Every pregnancy is different, but these three practices work against the baby and the pregnant woman's body instead of supporting it. Pregnant women are invited to all of our classes at Loka, but many poses might need to be modified or even skipped, and some women find that frustrating. On the other hand, women with strong practices often find the average pre-natal class slow and boring. If you are pregnant and looking for a more active and challenging class we highly recommend Jane Austin at Yoga Tree in San Francisco, Elika Aird at Namaste Grand Lake in Oakland, and Claudia Florian-McCaffrey at Namaste in Berkeley. None of these ladies are afraid to kick your butt while still respecting all the changes, challenges, and joys pregnancy brings. If none of these classes work with your schedule, please consider purchasing Jane Austin's DVD, now available on Amazon.

Link to Jane Austin Prenatal