NEWBIES

Welcome to the Power Living community!

Our aim is to provide you with an accessible and relevant modern-day yoga practice that will enrich your life as it has ours.

All our studios are part of the same family so you’ll experience a warm welcome wherever you go. They’re a haven from life’s hustle and bustle, letting you move, relax, connect and bring back some balance.

The mental space and gentle guidance allows you to develop a deeper level of self-awareness and create positive transformation: physically, mentally and emotionally.

Wondering what to expect? Check out our FAQs. And if there’s anything else you want to know, please ask. You can get in touch with us on Facebook, Instagram or in person at your local studio. We’re here to help you get the most out of your yoga journey.

We look forward to seeing you soon!

 

Top tips:

  • Introduce yourself to your teacher before your first class. They’re fully trained and passionate about helping you get the most from your practice.
  • Ask questions. Being a newbie can be daunting, but we’ve all been there.
  • Have a chat with the teachers before or after class. Or if you’re really struggling during the session let the teacher know and they’ll come over when they can.
  • Take care of yourself: rest whenever you need and listen to your body.
  • Listen your teacher: they’ll give you cues to keep your practice safe and powerful, not to mention fun.
  • Check out our list of classes here. We have different styles and levels to suit everyone, so make sure you choose what’s right for you.

Power Living FAQs

Whether you’re new to yoga altogether or just new to Power Living, here are some tips to help you find your feet as you embark on your journey with us. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, please feel free to give us a buzz. We pride ourselves on our open, friendly and supportive community and we’re always happy to have a chat!

I’ve never done Power Living yoga – which class should I go to?
  • Start with P.L.A.Y. Vinyasa Level 1. It’s the perfect yoga for beginners: a slower class – but still strong – where you’ll learn alignment techniques and get useful tips on how to practice and what to expect in the future.
  • Expect some regulars or advanced yogis in the room and don’t be intimidated! They come to hone their skills or work through areas of difficulty. Everyone is in the same boat and no one is judging you.
  • Remember: There is no such thing as a typical ‘yogi’. Everyone is welcome. Our classes offer yoga for men, women, old, young, injured and athletic. If you have any questions about which yoga class is best for you, please just ask.
Before you turn up for your first class…
  • Take a look at our class schedule and find one that works with your level and availability.
  • Arrive 15 minutes beforehand so you have enough time to find your way around, meet your teacher and settle in.
  • Remember to allow ample time for public transport, parking and finding the studio.
  • Make sure you’re well hydrated: drink 1-2 litres of water at least an hour before class.
  • Try not to eat a large meal within 2 hours of the start of class. However, if you’re starving do have something small – a piece of fruit, bliss ball, light snack – to stave off the hunger pangs and give you a shot of energy.
What do I need to bring?
  • An open mind, courageous attitude and a smile!
  • A towel.
  • A bottle of water.
  • A mat if you have one, otherwise you can hire one for $1.
  • We also hire towels and sell bottles of water at reception, so if you forget yours don’t worry.
What do I wear?
  • Comfortable clothing that you can move and sweat in.
  • Fitted, active gym gear, i.e. tights or shorts and a singlet.
  • We practice in bare feet so please leave shoes at the studio entrance.
Yoga room etiquette
  • Only bring yourself, your mat, your towel and your water into the room.
  • Bags and phones aren’t allowed, so please leave them in your locker for safety.
  • Position your mat in the middle of the room so there are students all around to help guide you if you get lost.
  • Grab a block and a strap: you can borrow these for free in all our studios.
  • Respect your body: work within your limits and rest whenever you need.
  • Don’t leave class early except in an emergency: if you need to rest or feel very hot, try going into Child’s Pose.
What are the facilities?
  • Mats and towels available for hire.
  • Bottled water available to purchase.
  • Shower and toilet facilities in all studios.
  • Lockers for secure storage of small personal belongings. Please check with your local studio to see if you need to bring a padlock.
What to do / expect after class
  • If you’ve hired one of our studio mats, please clean it with the spray and cloths provided and hang it back on the wall bars to dry.
  • If you have any questions why not have a chat with your teacher on the way out? They’ll be more than happy to help.
  • Make sure you drink enough water – 1 litre after practice is a good guide.
  • You may well have some muscular fatigue or soreness: this should resolve within 48 hours.
Are all classes heated, and why?

For most of our classes, the studios are heated to 30 degrees to help loosen up your muscles and connective tissue. This helps increase suppleness, joint mobility and flexibility. The heat also promotes sweating: a great way of detoxing and ‘letting go’ through the skin – the largest organ in the human body. At the end of class you’ll feel mentally, spiritually and emotionally cleansed: a great way to balance a busy lifestyle.

It’s also not too hot – we keep our studios at a temperature that makes you feel like you’re practicing on a tropical island, not in an oven! And when it’s hot outside – like in summer – we’ll turn the heat off. The exception is Hot Yoga (only available at North Perth and Myaree studios), where you’ll be taken to your edge at 38-40 degrees.

Some of our classes aren’t heated, so if getting super sweaty isn’t your thing then look out for P.L.A.Y. Vinyasa – Non-Heated.

Why are there different styles of classes?

Different practices can provide different benefits. Your choice of class will depend on a number factors including how your body feels physically, stress, your age, sports, work pressures, your health and your lifestyle. Listen to your body: what does it need today?

Learning to recognise and take responsibility for what you need will help you regain balance physically, mentally and emotionally. Addictive approaches to one style of yoga at the peril of what the body is telling us isn’t healthy. Much like a dogmatic belief in just one style of practice: this is based on the premise that we are all same – which couldn’t be further from the truth.

Power Living was the first studio in Australia to recognise the need for complementary practices, and we encourage our students to listen to what their bodies need that day: P.L.A.Y. Vinyasa – Heated , P.L.A.Y Vinyasa – Non-heatedP.L.A.Y Yin, P.L.A.Y Therapeutics, or Hot Yoga.

Which level is right for me?

Level 1: establishes the foundations for a safe, lifelong practice. Slow enough to understand the basics of alignment and learn modifications, but still a strong class. You’ll also be introduced to some of Power Living’s core philosophical and traditional teachings. Ideal beginners’ yoga or for those wanting to refine their practice.

Level 2: open-level classes have become our ‘norm’. They’re challenging and all levels are welcome, but some experience of yoga is advised as there will be minimal modifications and education. Moving at a steady pace, these classes require a healthy, active body.

Level 3: our advanced level classes are recommended for people with at least three years’ regular practice. Taking you on a journey from start to finish, this advanced level practice will have you pushing boundaries, rocking challenging yoga poses and overcoming limiting beliefs. Sequences are devised to help inspire growth, strength and humility.

How often should I practise?

You can practice as often as you like, just remember to listen to your body. Some committed students practice 5-6 times per week, however the intensity will vary to suit the needs of their body on the day.  Slowing down and listening to your body’s intuition is part of the yoga journey. If you’re cross-training with other sports then 2-3 times a week would likely be of great benefit.

What is my ‘Ujjayi’ breath?

Ujjayi breath is sometimes called ‘the ocean breath’ or ‘oceanic breathing’.

It’s a controlled, diaphragmatic breath that’s achieved by gently tightening the muscles in your throat and breathing in and out through your nose, mouth closed. When you’re doing it correctly, you’ll hear a whispering, ocean-like sound and may feel a slight vibration in the back of your throat. Allow your chest to expand and deflate with each slow inhale and exhale.

We encourage students to breathe this way throughout class. It can be challenging and may take some time to master but helps bring your focus back to the breath when your mind wanders. It’s also an excellent barometer of how hard you’re working: if you’re pushing yourself too hard then you won’t be able to maintain the Ujjayi breath, so lessen the intensity of your practice until you can. Alternatively, if you keep losing focus on the breath, could you up your pace?

Ujjayi breath is a great way to stay connected to your practice, helping anchor you into the present moment. It’s also a great way of building the vital energy in the body and can turn your practice into a yoga meditation.

What is a bandha?

A bandha is an energetic lock in the body. There are many of them, but in yoga we give importance to three along the central axis of the body: the root lock (mula bandha), the abdomen lock (uddiyana bandha) and the throat lock (jalandhara bandha).

Energetically, working with your bandhas engaged is a great way to improve thoracic breathing and build vital energy within the body.

You may have heard your teacher tell you to, “Lift the pit of your belly towards your spine”. This is ‘mula bandha’ and how we teach students to engage their cores for improved back support and to bring strength into each posture.

Speak to your teacher about how to develop your mula bandha and work on uddiyana and jalandahara bandha too.

What do you mean by ‘philosophy’?

We believe philosophy is at the heart of Yoga. Most of us don’t come to Yoga to learn something new but rather to unlearn all the conditioning that has brought us to this place in our life.

Yoga is far more than physical: our teachers’ classroom dialogue comes from their personal evolutions and experiences in yoga. Powerful philosophy can be a great way of encouraging students to take a journey out of their busy minds and deep into the depth of their souls. Quite simply, philosophy is offered as a doorway for our students to access their hearts.

If some of the philosophy doesn’t resonate, you can just let it go and still enjoy the other benefits of the practice.

Can I do yoga when I’m pregnant?

Heated yoga is not recommended for pregnancy, so we advise you not to attend those classes. As an alternative, why not try P.L.A.Y. Vinyasa – non-heated, P.L.A.Y. Yin (not suitable for at least 3 months after giving birth), or P.L.A.Y. Therapeutics. However, always check with your doctor in advance and let your teacher know you’re pregnant so they can help you modify poses as necessary.

How can I avoid getting injured?

Although yoga’s generally considered a fairly safe form of exercise, injuries can occur when students don’t take appropriate modifications or try and force their bodies into postures they’re not ready for. This is why it’s so important to honour what your body needs, every time you step on the mat. However, injuries can also be one of our best teachers as they force us to slow down, modify and listen to our bodies.

Here are some tips to prevent injuries:

  • If you have any pre-existing conditions, please speak to your doctor or physiotherapist before coming to class.
  • Focus on maintaining a smooth, steady Ujjayi breath throughout your practice, even if that means taking a less intense variation of a posture or easing up on the intensity.
  • Listen to your body. Be mindful of its subtle clues about how deeply, strongly or for how long you should hold a posture.
  • If you’re experiencing pain or exhaustion during class, stop and rest immediately. Child’s Pose or Supta Baddha Konasana are ideal resting yoga poses.
  • Make sure you warm up thoroughly at the start of class. Getting your body moving – with sun salutations, for example – increases circulation to muscles, lubricates joints, and prepares the body for deeper postures. The only exception to this is P.L.A.Y. Yin which is designed to be done ‘cold’ as it targets fascia rather than muscles.
  • Listen and watch for correct alignment cues. This will ensure you’re strengthening muscles equally on both sides of the active joint – avoiding building an unbalanced body – while also reducing tension where it’s not needed.
  • Modify poses to suit your individual needs and embrace the non-competitive and self-accepting atmosphere of the yoga class.
  • Use props – blocks, bolsters, towels and straps – to help maintain safe alignment, facilitate appropriate stretching and take undue stress off joints and tight muscles.
  • Each of our bodies is built differently, and some of us have a tendency towards unsupported hyperflexion, hyperextension and excessive twisting. Listen to the alignment cues, notice how your body moves and speak to your teacher if you think this might apply to you.
What are common yoga injuries?

Muscle Strains: A strain occurs when muscle tissue tears. If a muscle is powerfully contracted or stretched too far, an acute strain occurs. Chronic strains result from excess use over a period of time (with inadequate recovery). Hamstring strains are common in yoga, often occurring at the point where the hamstrings attach to the sitting bones, as a result of overstretching in forward bends. Other common muscle strains involve hip flexors (caused by deep lunges), neck muscles (from unsupported Shoulder Stand, Plough, Deaf Man’s Pose), and lower back muscles (from hyperflexion in standing or seated forward bends).

Tendonitis and Bursitis: These are overuse injuries. Tendonitis is inflammation or irritation of a tendon, and bursitis is inflammation of the bursae.  Bursae are protective ‘cushions’, situated between moving structures such as bones, muscles and tendons. They let us move our joints easily, without friction.

Performing long holds in yoga poses such as Downward Facing Dog, Chaturanga and Side Plank without adequate strength or appropriate modifications can cause excess stress on bursae and tendons in the shoulders, elbows and wrists. This may exacerbate carpal tunnel syndrome, bursitis or tendonitis in these joints.

Ligaments and Cartilage: Students who are hypermobile, or those who hyperextend or flex their joints without adequate strength, can put additional stress on joint-stabilising ligaments and tendons without realising. This can cause joint inflammation or injury.

Knees, elbows and the spine are common problem areas. Hyperextension of the knee is often seen in straight leg poses such as balancing postures, Triangle Pose, standing and seated forward bends. Elbow hyperextension is often seen in Downward and Upward Facing Dog and Side Plank. Shoulder Stand, Plough, and forward bends place compression forces on the spine. Spinal discs can be damaged if an inappropriate level of spinal joint flexion or forced flexion occurs. Degenerative disease, pinched nerves or fractures can occur when the spine is hyperextended.

Find a studio near you

Ready to practice? Find a studio near you and kick-off your yoga practice with Power Living

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