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Ashtanga Yoga Beginners

occurs on: Mondays & Tuesdays
£34 per month membership option
cost: £8 per session
If you are an Ashtanga Yoga Beginner - welcome! Ashtanga yoga is taught in such a way that you are welcome to join any of the Ashtanga yoga classes because the teacher (Emma, our Studio Director) assists every individual and offers lots of cues to help you find easeful effort.

Mondays and Tuesdays at 7:30 - 8:30pm are paced more slowly than Wednesday and Friday classes. You don't need to have ever practiced yoga to join any of these classes.

Ashtanga is the most energetic and challenging form of yoga, it's also very traditional and Emma teaches in a way that honours the tradition. Ashtanga yoga combines flexibility, strength, balance and cardiovascular fitness as well as a cultivation of focus, curiosity, deep awareness and control of the nervous system.

It suits those who are happy to work at their physical yoga practice and to sweat and progress.

You'll learn the Ashtanga yoga sequence so that it becomes a joyful moving meditation and you'll notice your progression. Each posture is held for 5 breathes and is linked with a set of movements called a vinyasa to create a sense of rhythmic energy that becomes deeply calming.

If you want to delve deeper there’s plenty to learn in this practice including the Sanskrit names, the Ashtanga count, mantras, philosophy and pranayama (breathing) and meditation practices, which you can pick up along the way, through the video library or through specific workshop sessions at the studio.

We have one of the largest UK Ashtanga Yoga communities outside London and our Ashtanga yoga students are a lovely, welcoming community, come and join us!

What is Ashtanga Yoga and what are the benefits?

Ashtanga yoga is an energetic traditional form of yoga founded in Mysore, India and now practiced all over the world.

It comprises a set series of postures which flow together forming a moving meditation which is excellent for anxiety and stress-relief, flexibility, balance and strength as well as cardio-vascular fitness.

Because the postures are only held for 5 breaths and we are moving and breathing rhythmically, Ashtanga yoga is also excellent for anxiety, cardio-vascular fitness and improving the tone of vagus nerve which improves resilience and the ability to remain focused and calm.

What are the types of Ashtanga Yoga class?

At Mandala we have the following Ashtanga yoga classes:-
Beginners, a 60minute class with the standing postures.
Progression, a 60minute class with around half the postures.
Half Primary, a 75minute class with 3/4 of the poses.
Full Primary, a 90minute class with all of the primary series poses.

There is also a Mysore class which is a silent practice. See the Mysore FAQ for more detail.

Which Ashtanga Yoga class is right for me?

I recommend you start with either the Beginners or Progression class, so that you can build your understanding of each of the asana (postures). If you are are reasonably fit and an experienced yoga practitioner you may wish to start with the Half Primary class.

Is Ashtanga Yoga Beginner Friendly?

Yes, we have Ashtanga yoga classes at all levels from beginner to advanced. I recommend you start with Ashtanga Beginners or Progression class if you are a yoga beginner.

What should I wear to class?

Something you are comfortable stretching in, for example leggings or shorts and a t-shirt or vest top.

What is the monthly Mysore class?

Each month we have a Mysore Ashtanga class. A Mysore Ashtanga class is a silent, peaceful highly personalised class in which the teacher works with each student in detail where needed. You can arrive and leave whenever you like during the Mysore class as everyone will be working at their own pace.

The Mysore yoga class gives you more time to explore postures you want to work on with me and to move through the sequence at your own pace. I will come along and assist where I think you might need help and you can indicate to me that you want assistance by sitting or standing still, there's no rush to get into or out of postures, I teach you additional postures in the sequence when you are ready and teach deepening of postures when you are ready. We can even create a specific yoga sequence for you with individual adaptations for your body.

What is Ashtanga Yoga membership?

Ashtanga Yoga membership saves you £4 - £12 per month and guarantees you access to your chosen Ashtanga Yoga class each week. It also offers priority booking for events.

There is the option to add Groove to your membership.

See the Ashtanga Membership page of the website for more details.

about the Teacher

Emma Lowther-Wright: Studio Director

Hi, I'm Emma and I am very fortunate to have been trained to teach Ashtanga Yoga by world-renowned John Scott. John is one of the key teachers who brought Ashtanga yoga from India to Europe. Often referred to as 'Preston's yoga teacher' I am honoured to teach yoga to 150-200 people every week!

I am dedicated to and immersed in the Ashtanga practice and continue to travel to study with senior 500hr international teachers including Eddie Stern, Scott Johnson, Lucy Crawford-Scott and Greg Nardi.

I teach with an emphasis on clear communication, empowerment, joy and compassion. I am especially interested in the neuroscience of yoga, how yoga can release physically held mental and emotional tension and how yoga can help us to live with greater joy, confidence and ease.

As well as studio classes I work within the community teaching in workplaces and education settings and to members of our community with physical and mental health challenges including those with deafness, who use a wheelchair and have cognitive challenges.

My classes are heart-lifting, empowering, flowing dances to the rhythm of the breath. I share movement and meditation practices with kindness, encouragement and joy - I hope to welcome you to a class soon.
RYT 350hrs, BAST PLdip, Groove Facilitator, POUND, Barre Concept, Aerial Yoga

This was mine and my partners first time and Emma is just so warm, lovely and welcoming. We absolutely loved it, what an all round amazing experience. We will definitely be back.

Thank you to Emma for welcoming us, what a lovely space filled with positive energy.

Amazing Experience

Wonderful experience. I have never done any yoga before and have no flexibility or ability but Emma gave no pressure to do anything other than what felt good for me. I was floating on air afterwards so would recommend to anyone. I took a chance and I'm so glad I did. I'll be back for sure! Don't be afraid if you're on the larger size either- just do what you can. I enjoyed floating in a cocoon the most! and managed to stretch and it felt so good. Thank-you Emma!

Aerial Yoga - Floating on Air

I am only fairly recent to the studio and to Emma as a teacher but wow what a difference it has made to my week each week and my well-being overall. I look forward to my classes and feel amazing after.

Emma is so kind and helpful  coaxing you to push a little further and increase your practice, making it more enjoyable and giving your a stronger basis. The yoga in the park during the pandemic was a life line and such a beautiful idea I almost sad to go back to a studio. We laugh, practice and most of all enjoy the moment. I recommend this school and teacher wholeheartedly ......”  Anna

Wow - what a difference!

I have practiced yoga with many teachers but have learnt so much from Emma. Her explanations are very clear and really help me to get more from each posture and my practice. I always feel wonderful after her yoga classes. Thank you for sharing your knowledge Emma. Pauline

Learnt so much

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