Ashtanga Practitioners' Path

A 6 months in-depth course for Ashtanga Lovers

Starts 14 January 2023

Ashtanga Practitioner’s Path

A 6 months in-depth course for everyone who wants to integrate the 8 limbed path of yoga into their life

For whom:

This 6 months course is for you if you:

  • Want to deepen your experience and understanding of yoga beyond of what is possible in the Mysore room, or what your current practice is
  • Want to integrate the 8-limbed path into your life in a non-dogmatic, light-hearted and experience-based way.
  • Want to build a sustainable, responsible and compassionate relation to your yoga and life.
  • Don’t just want to follow a yoga teacher training to learn more but really experience the richness of all things yoga yourself  – instead of learning to teach techniques to teach others.

Your present situation may be:

  • You may already practice Mysore yoga with me or with someone else.
  • You may practice a different style of yoga but really wish to have more personal guidance and bring yoga into your daily life. 
  • You may already have a consistent yoga practice or your practice may lack consistency
  • You may have already applied all sorts of yoga techniques that you found here or there, heard of or learned at a workshop but you didn’t receive the benefits of these techniques because you eventually dropped them. You are confused about all that is “out there”and what to really focus on.
  • You may be a yoga teacher who finds it challenging to nourish their own practice. You finally want to give to yourself and have more guidance.
  • You may have practiced with me in the past but due to circumstances lost practice. Now you wish to build up your practice again in an integrative way.

    If you recognise yourself in some of the above, then this 6 month program is for you! In this 6 months program you will weave yourself deep into all aspects of yoga. The teaching provided and group experience will be an incredible support for your understanding and experience of your yoga, both on and off the mat.

    This 6-months intensive really focuses on you. You will receive the benefits of understanding, experiencing and integrating:

    •  How to safely start / progress through your kriya and pranayama practice
    • Yoga philosophy and how it relates to your life on and off the mat.
    • What the subtle body is and does; and what it does for your health and well-being
    • How to apply your body in your yoga practice in an effective and safe way (asana labs will give you lots of nuggets to benefit your practice)
    • Deepen your perspective what is possible for you on and off your mat.
    • Feel steady and comfortable (sthira sukham) with what you are doing in your asana practice. Understand the principles of a safe practice physically, mentally and energetically. Moreover be able to adjust your practice safely given any life changes / circumstance.
    • Know how and why to use simple yet effective Ayurvedic self-care remedies to calm your nervous system
    • Experience the power of chanting to calm and steady yourself.
    • Be part of an inspiring small group of yogis.

    Curriculum:

    This 6 months course is built around six comprehensive study days at the yoga school. We meet once a month during the period of January to June 2023. Each study day has a similar structure, yet in each day we progressively go deeper into our exploration of the 8 limbs of yoga in a dedicated yet non-dogmatic but light-hearted way. 

    To help you deepen your experience and feel as supported as possible during the course:

    • You will receive all course materials throughout the course as it become relevant (pdf and audio files)
    • You will receive reflection questions after each study day. These questions will help you enrich your experience and understanding of the material we studied.
    • It’s beneficial to join our morning Mysore Yoga classes as possible for you and / or have a regular home practice (or start having one)
    • Can always receive support from Maxi and ask questions.

    Maxi Meissner Pranayama

    Sample of a Course Day

    9.00-9.30h Guided Kriya & Pranayama (Simple and effective yogic cleansing and breathing techniques)                                            

    9.30-11.30h Yoga Practice: Mysore Style Practice, or guided All-levels Led class (focus on a topic), or Led going into Mysore *don’t worry, it will be suitable for all.

    11.30-12.30h Break

    12.30-13.00h Shanti Mantra and Sutra Chanting (Calming the mind, brightening up the spirit)

    13.00-16.00h Yoga Lab & Philosophy – In-depth exploration of yogic principles & techniques interwoven with applied yoga philosophy (with a 30min break around 14.15h)

     

    What you will learn:

    Throughout the course you will deepen your understanding of your practice as awareness to the more subtle aspects of practice will grow.

    Yoga Philosophy & Physiology

    • Yamas & niyamas – in practice and in day-to-day life
    • Subtle anatomy: Gunas, koshas, vayus, nadis
    • Yoga Sutras – selected from the 1st & 2nd chapter
    • Yoga and the mind
    • Principles of chanting

    • Understanding your Yoga 1: Tristhana & the Subtle Body:
    • Pranayama & Kriya: Progressing through pranayama & kriya step-by-step, refining the breath
    • Physiology & Psychology of Pranayama 
    • Tristhana in action – roadmaps to access breath, bandha & drsthi

    Understanding your Yoga 2: Smart Yoga

    • Understand the principles of a safe practice and how to adjust and scale your practice intelligently 
    • Understand the principles of backbends, arm balances, hip openers and twists to be able to modify as needed
    • Ashtanga Yoga a living and evolving tradition

    Supplemental Self-Care Strategies:

    • Be able to effectively use simple yet powerful Ayurvedic self-care remedies to calm your nervous system and help your immune function
    • Pranayama & Kriya
    • Metta meditation – Loving kindness

    Dates & Times:

    We meet on the following Saturdays of 2023:

    14 January, 11 February, 11 March, 8 April, 13 May, 10 June

    Location: We meet at our yoga school: Bhumi Yoga, Damsterdiep 46, 9711SM Groningen | It is also possible to join online through zoom.

    *From April onwards, we will meet in our new space (as we are moving in April) at Oosterhamriklaan 261a, Groningen

     

    What previous participants of the 6 Month Ashanga Intensive for Ashtanga Lovers say about this training:

    The Intensive brought depth and density to my (body-level) understanding of yoga. As compared to before I have a much better (felt) understanding of not only the muscular/skeletal aspects, but also as it relates to the internal organs (thanks to the focus on the bandhas and the pranayama) as well as to the “subtle” body.

    I particular appreciated Maxi sharing her understanding of the physiology of the breath. I also appreciated Maxi’s use of simple language to explain complex process. Maxi really has a deep understanding of the subject.

     

    Anna

    I had some very school-book-like expectations for the yoga antomy and physiology part, thinking more in terms of muscles being engaged.

    Instead I learnt about the whole system that I am building up through yoga, kriya and pranayama within my entire body and the ground in the practise. So this was more holistic than I could have expected.

    My focus is different now, and when I practise I see the positions more as processes.

    Anita

    Teacher: Maxi Meissner

    Maxi Meissner (PhD & certified yoga teacher, mom) is passionate about empowering people to live their best lives possible through the tools of yoga.  

    In 2010. Maxi founded Bhumi Yoga, her yoga school in Groningen which is highly valued not just for the personal and inclusive approach to teaching yoga but also as it has a real sense of community where everyone “feel at home”. Maxi’s teaching is distinguished by her clear and compassionate guidance and her ability to relate and connect with just about anyone willing to learn. She will figure out a way for anyone to enjoy the practice of yoga safely.

    In her work, Maxi light-heartedly and skilfully integrates her extensive experience and understanding about yoga, the human body, brain and behaviour stemming from:

    • Over 10+ years of teaching experience
    • 2000+hours of comprehensive yoga teacher trainings and yoga therapy training with leaders in the field)
    • Her PhD and post-doc scientific studies on stress, inflammation, and further studies on yoga and wellbeing making her an expert in the field of stress and the understanding how yoga affects health
    • Working with and being able to relate to different populations of people as a yoga teacher, personal coach, teacher for yoga teachers, master thesis supervisor, exercise physiologist for high performing athletes as well as for patients in cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation, being under a lot of pressure herself while being on the German national rowing team (Jr world champion twice, 1997 & 1998), a Division 1 rower for the Ohio State University 1999-2003, PhD life…

    Read more about Maxi here.

      Maxi Meissner

      The Ashtanga Intensive changed my understanding of yoga from a series of asanas to a beautiful technique for self care and love. Now yoga is not only on the matt, but everywhere.

      The workshops gave me tools to help myself mentally and physically, from breath work to self observation, and an acceptance for what is that I had not found elsewhere.                               

      The awareness I have of myself in practice is very different now compared to before the intensive: Now I am much more aware of my breath and can connect to my bandhas.

      Establishing and progressing my pranayama practice was one of the major benefits of this intensive for me. Being able to dedicate a little time every day to regulate the breath has been really beneficial for me. After pranayama I feel a sense of balance which leaves a mutual state from which I then start my asana practice.

      Ele Bailoni

      FAQ:

      To join this course, what should my experience level be with Mysore Style practice?

      If you are practicing with me already or have practiced with me in the past, you can join.

       If you are not sure whether you can/want to join, because:

      • You don’t have an existing yoga practice at the moment or
      • You have not practiced Ashtanga Mysore Yoga before or
      • Or you have any questions about it

      Reach out to me and we figure out together wether this intensive is a good fit. I really look forward to hearing from you.

      I may not be able to attend all the Sundays, can I still join?

      To get the most out of this course, it’s best to block off the study days for this course. However, I understand that life happens and you may miss a day.

      If you are traveling or sick, you can always join a study day (or more) online. This is what participants of previous immersions have done, and found it extremely valuable. 

      You may also receive audio recordings if you miss a session.

       

      Do I need extra material for the course?

      No. You will receive all relevant study material in pdf and audio format throughout the course.

      Is it possible to book a single Sunday only?

      No. This course can only be booked as a full course. Part of the experience is to progressively dive deeper and be with the same small group of people throughout the study course. Single session attendance will be disruptive to the deep learning we aim for.

      Does the course come with homework?

      No, during this course you are not required to hand-in homework assignments. We understand that everyone has a busy life. Yet, to help you better integrate and understand the material we study, you will receive reflection questions after each study day. These reflection questions will help you enrich your experience and will greatly support your learning process. You can do them in your own time.Moreover, in order to integrate the pranayama practice and be able to progress, it’s best to take a little bit of time 5-15min at least 4 days a week for your pranayama practice.

      Can I receive a teacher certification or credit following this course?

      No. This course is not a teacher training course. It is for those of you who want to dive deeper into your very own journey, you don’t have to prove anything to the teacher nor to the group and there is no hassle to attain a certificate. It’s a self study in a group, a real deep dive, for your yoga. 

      This is your time for your yoga, for your process. This is not for theory on how to teach someone else. This is for yourself. Enriching your very own practice, and life.

      Cost:

      Early bird rate until 14 December 2022: €515

      Normal rate after 14 December 2022: €625

       

       

       

       

      Sign up:

      By clicking on the button below you can sign up for this comprehensive program.

      I decided to sign up for Maxi’s Ashtanga yoga intensive training sessions (start January ’22) because of 3 reasons.The first reason is that I wanted to get more background knowledge on Ashtanga yoga philosophy. Regular physical practice in the morning is great but is not providing you with all the in-depth elements of Ashtanga yoga. The second reason was to learn and practice more techniques when it comes to breathing, kriya’s etc. The third reason to sign up was to have an opportunity to meet face to face with fellow practitioners and share learnings and have some fun together.
      After 6 sessions I can happily say I was rewarded on all of the reasons to sign up. I have learned much more about the backgrounds of Ashtanga yoga and where things come from. It’s even more clearly a way of life to me now instead of just the physical practice I started with over 2 years ago. (Also makes you aware of where you are and that you are never done learning). I also learned and practiced a whole new set of techniques and experienced some positive effects of breathing, kriya’s and chanting. 
      The enthusiasm that Maxi is showing in sharing her knowledge and experience is adding to the great atmosphere during the sessions. She conveys the message very well and flexible with the program where needed. The friendly group of participants were very open in sharing their experiences and thoughts and that helps in overcoming your personal challenges.
      The good thing about the intensive is that it is spread out over 6 months of time which allows for practicing the things you learn and to come back the next time with more questions.
      If you are a Ashtanga practitioner I can definitely recommend attending one of the next Yoga intensive editions in the future.
      Bert Oosting