Koh Phangan is known for two things that couldn't be more different: Party & Yoga. The one doesn't exclude the other, and maybe you've been wondering for a while whether yoga could be something for you. You know all the great photos of eight-fold entangled limbs and on Koh Phangan many people look as if they came straight from a yoga magazine. For us “normal people” this creates reservations.
The good news is, you are here in the perfect place to get a taste of it. The range of workshops on a wide variety of topics relating to conscious, mindful, healthy living is huge on Koh Phangan. So here are some short, crisp facts and tips about First contact with yoga.
The first time yoga
The most common is you Ashtanga, Hatha and Vinyasa Flow Encounter yoga. However, countless currents have developed, including yoga therapy, which is successfully used for physical and mental ailments.
Ashtanga is a powerful, dynamic style in which the sequence of exercises is fixed. The individual postures (asanas) are often connected to one another by jumps. There are six series of exercises with increasing difficulty.
Hatha means strength & energy and is considered a classic yoga. It is strongly related to the body and has a much calmer gait. Each body position is correctly aligned and held for a certain time.
Vinyasa Flow Yoga
Vinyasa-Flow is a very dynamic style with a focus on increased speed with concentration on breathing & movement. The asanas flow into one another, almost like in a dance. There are no set series of exercises.
To really have fun you should choose a direction that suits you, if the elimination process doesn't work, then just try them all out.
Yoga class prices in Thailand
The Prices are cheaper compared to Europe and you don't have to bring anything but yourself - and maybe a bottle of water. The individual lesson in drop in classes (the "hour" lasts 90 minutes) usually costs 300 Bath, which is about 7,50 euros. If you like it there are blocks of ten, if you really enjoy it, there are multi-day and multi-week retreats.
Drop in yoga classes
If there are new faces in the drop in class, the responsible yoga teacher will ask if you have done yoga before and / or if there are any physical problems. This is the most important question of allso be honest! As an example, I would like to take my own cervical spine, which, instead of being gently curved, is more straight like a broomstick. For me, this definitely rules out some poses and others need to be changed slightly.
Listen to your body, that is the key point! It can and should pinch sometimes, but never cause real pain. Yoga is also not a competitive sport, not an ego comparison, it should be good for your body and bring you joy.
There are also a few Things you should not do. For example, don't be late. Yoga classes start with a short phase of attunement and concentration; if you arrive late, the whole class is disturbed. Don't put your bag behind or next to you. The yoga teacher keeps going through to help and correct, bags and other stuff are the purest pitfalls. Don't just leave everything you've used lying around after the lesson. Everyone cleans their mat and clears away blocks and whatever else was needed.
What does yoga bring?
What does yoga bring you now? All I can say about that is… .that is something different for everyone personally. The thought of doing something for your body is usually the reason to go on the mat for the first time, and it is a good reason. But yoga is of course much more complex and can do infinitely more in us. Go there without expectation, get involved, just see where it leads you and take with you what makes sense for you. Maybe YOU keep going because it does your back so good, YOU maybe because it balances out your emotional fluctuations, maybe YOU keep going because it gives you the best figure of your life and maybe YOU have been able to convince this concept of life and that's why you keep going.
Drop in classes in Koh Phangan
In these studios (list without claim of completeness) drop are offered in classes:
- Siam Healing Center
- The Yoga Retreat
- Orion Healing Center
- Sunny Yoga
- The Yoga Studio
- Samma Karuna
- Gaia Yogashala
- Blooming Lotus
- The Sanctuary
Images are courtesy of Ananda Wellness Resort.