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Class Descriptions

There are many different styles of yoga being practiced around the world and navigating the world of yoga can be daunting and confusing at first!

However diverse, all yoga styles are based on the practice of physical postures (also called poses, or asanas), and some styles also incorporate additional elements such as breathing exercises (pranayama), meditation, or chanting.

Each style empasizes different postures, different ways of sequencing these postures, and different ways of combining elements.  Adding to this diversity is the fact that each teacher will bring their own personal viewpoint to teaching the yoga style you will practice during the class type you are trying. 

As a student you have to find not only the yoga style with which you connect, but also the right teacher for you.  Finding the combination that suits your needs and personality is a bit like shopping for that perfect pair of jeans -- you may have to try a lot of classes and teachers until you find it, or you may walk into the right class with the right teacher for you the very first time.

Experimenting and trying different yoga classes and teachers until you feel "at home" is the way to go!

Please note that unless noted otherwise, all classes are taught at a temperature of 72 to 75 degrees F (air-conditioning is used in the summer months).
Karma Yoga Studio currently offers the classes listed below. If you still have questions after reading the descriptions, don't hesitate to contact us!


PhysioYoga is a yoga practice based on correct anatomical alignment, scientifically-verifiable facts and serious attention to injury prevention  that was developed by the founder of Karma Yoga Studios, Jesse Winder. 

Gentle PhysioYoga: This class is designed as the perfect introduction to yoga, for absolutely any and every one. No one can ever feel out of place in this class, and everyone will feel they belong.

The class is a mild practice session that is entirely appropriate for true beginners, more experienced students looking for a gentle stretch, or even for persons with minor injuries or physical limitations. This class is also appropriate during pregnancy (just let the teacher know that you are expecting at the start of the class).

The overall pace is slow and steady, with gentle warm-ups and attention to the details of each posture. This class is a very educational class, but it is also very laid back. If you believe that laughter is good for the soul, that your teacher should view you as an equal, and if you like world of music--not just yoga music--there is a good chance that this is a class for you.

Core Strength PhysioYoga: Target your "power-house" muscles with a group of focused exercises that develop and build your core strength. The "core", or "power-house", is the torso of our bodies and it includes such major muscle groups as the abdominals and the paraspinals (the muscles that support the back). When we have a strong and flexible torso we can better support our whole body, enhance our posture, and improve the function of our digestive process. (Not to mention getting those abs!)

other specialized yoga styles

The classes listed below are taught by certified instructors specialized in each of these particular yoga styles (alphabetically listed):

Anusara Yoga: The Anusara style blends a spiritual context, which awakens and celebrates the heart, with the Universal Principles of Alignment, which bring the body toward its optimal muscular, skeletal, and energetic blueprint. Anusara translates as "stepping into the flow of grace" and is a practice that emphasizes freedom and honors individuality.  [taught at Karma Yoga in Harvard Square]

NEW AT KARMA!  AcroYoga: Come and fly! AcroYoga is a partner practice that integrates the art of yoga, acrobatics, and Thai massage. Grounded in breath, we will explore partner flows and sequences that draw upon the natural forces of gravity and “metta” ~ loving kindness ~ to create a safe, fun-filled, heart-opening experience! Classes will present both acrobatics (inversions and partner flying techniques to develop strength, flexibility, and body awareness), and therapeutics (gentle flying and Thai massage to heal body and spirit). No experience needed, no partner required - come and play!  [taught at Karma Revolution in Allston]

NEW AT KARMA!  Awakening Yoga: Start your day flowing through an awakening slow flow Vinyasa sequence.  Class will begin with a mindful breathing exercise, lead into a short series of restorative postures to get the muscles warm and supple, and then guide you through a Vinyasa sequence of breath-synchronized postures.  In this one-hour flow, you will leave class feeling energized, strong, at ease, and ready to flow through your day.  [taught at Karma Revolution in Allston]

Core Power Yoga: (this class is taught in a room heated to aprox. 90 degrees F) This class is similar to the flowing, dynamic Power Yoga class (see description below), but with an added focus on the core. We will work on all of the major abdominal muscles in creative ways to access and build the strength to move to the next level on the mat. The core can offer us lightness and stability which can transform your practice! As you grow stronger, you'll be able to move deeper into challenging poses, discover better alignment, and find your body at more ease in every day life.

Core Vinyasa (Flow) Yoga: Core Vinyasa is a flowing style of yoga that integrates breathwork, movement, core-strength and awareness. This class is accompanied by music and held in a slightly heated room to promote detoxification and flexibility. With moderate pacing and subtle reminders of moving from the center, we keep the body and mind fully engaged in the present moment. Our core is both our literal & energetic center of our balance and strength. Many of us shut down around this area causing back pain, mis-aligned posture, suppressed emotions, and even poor digestion. Awaken your core and become strong & resilient both on and off your mat!

NEW AT KARMA! Dharma (Vinyasa) Yoga: The Dharma Yoga Class is a mixed Level class that is mostly asanas (postures) taught in a flowing sequence.  The sequences were created by Sri Dharma Mittra (www.dharmayogacenter.com) and the teacher, Andrew Tanner, studied with Dharma for 3 years and has been certified by him to teach. The practice emphasizes warming up the spine with lots of back and forward bends and twists. You will also learn how to be comfortable in various inverted positions such as forearm balance, shoulder stand, head stand, and hand stand. Beginners will always be given safe options to start and over time can learn to master being comfortable upside down. The class is taught in a spiritual atmosphere with chanting of "Om" and breathing techniques at the beginning and end of class. The practice is rigorous but safe and finishes with 8-10 mins of relaxation or "savasana" pose.  For beginners it's best to attend Monday or Tuesday night at Karma Revolution in Allston. The Thursday night class (at the same location) is more challenging and introduces more intermediate and advanced options, but is still open to all levels.  The best way to learn more is to experience the class. If you have any injury concerns Andrew will discuss them with you prior to class if you arrive at least 15-10 mins early.  Lastly, Andrew's classes tend to fill up and you should arrive early or bring your own mat if you might arrive late as there may not be any mats left.

Forrest Yoga: (this class is taught in a room heated to aprox. 80 degrees F) This is an inspiring yoga practice that helps you connect to your core - getting strong and centered. Forrest Yoga uses heat, deep breathing and vigorous sequences to sweat out toxins. The long holds in the pose progressions help you flush, oxygenate and rejuvenate every cell. Learning to work honestly at your edges, you develop effective tools to deal with fear and struggle. This makes it possible for integrity, self awareness and playful curiosity to become part of your daily life. Forrest Yoga does not require strength or flexibility; it only requires that you bring a willingness to learn how to feel authentically and respond honestly.

Fundamentals of Flow (Vinyasa): This class is great for those new to yoga who have always wanted to try vinyasa flow yoga classes but were not sure where to begin or needed a slower pace. This class is appropriate for students new to yoga as well as for more seasoned practitioners who want to refine their technique and refresh their understanding of the fundamentals. Through mindful work and attention to the breath, students will learn safe alignment in basic postures and sun salutations. Students will build strength, flexibility, balance, and awareness to prepare to enter more advanced classes safely. Classes incorporate poses (asana), breathing exercises (pranayama), and guided meditation.

Hatha Yoga: This general yoga style utilizes the classical yoga postures and different sequencing depending on the instructor for the purpose of strengthening, opening, and cleansing the body. In Hatha-style classes, the poses are held by the practitioner for varying lengths of time (depending on the instructor), unlike in Vinyasa-style classes where the poses are linked and create a flowing movement from one pose to the next (see Vinyasa description below). Please note that this general-style class is conducted in a unique way by each different instructor--so Hatha with one teacher might not be the same experience as Hatha with another teacher.

NEW AT KARMA! Jivamukti Yoga: This style of yoga is a vigorous, flowing practice that links traditional asanas into smart and creative sequences.  Created by David Life and Sharon Gannon in 1984, the Jivamukti method is a physically and intellectually stimulating practice emphasizing spiritual awareness.  Each class focuses on a theme, which is supported by asana sequencing, yogic breathing, music and explorations of yogic philosophy.  Expect hands-on asists to support your alignment.

NEW AT KARMA! Jivamukti Spiritual Warrior: The Spiritual Warrior classes are designed for busy people who only have one hour to practice. The class is fast-paced and invigorating and is certainly a "get-in-shape" class. The teacher focuses on keeping the pace moving and does not stop to give spiritual discourses. The structure is a fixed-set sequence instructed in a vinyasa style. It is a fully balanced class which includes asana warm-up, chanting, setting of intention, surya namaskar, standing poses, backbends, forward bends, twists, inversions, meditation and relaxation. Since the asana sequence is always the same, a student will pick it up quite quickly after only a couple of classes. Spiritual Warrior classes are best for intermediate and advanced students, although beginners as well as anyone with a sense of adventure are welcome! Spiritual Warrior classes are always one hour in length.

NEW AT KARMA! Jivamukti Beginner Vinyasa: The Jivamukti Beginner Vinyasa classes are designed to provide the student with the underlying basics of how a vinyasa practice works. Vinyasa is a method of practicing asana (physical poses), where the asanas are presented in a sequence, flowing one to the next. The practice focuses on trying to align one's breath and spiritual intention with movement. The class follows a set sequence of asanas but is presented at a slower, more relaxed pace than in the Spiritual Warrior class. Beginner Vinyasa classes provide a good transition for a beginner student from a Basic to the Spiritual Warrior class and gives the opportunity to the more advanced student to refine their skills through a deeper, slower exploration. This class is suitable for beginners, but open to all levels of practitioner.

KUNDALINI YOGA - [no yoga experience required, beginners welcome.]

Open to all students, Kundalini is an ancient practice which incorporates breathing, yoga postures, mantras, mudras and meditations. These five components are used in specific combinations or sequences called Kriyas. Kriyas enable the creative energy (Kundalini) to flow and circulate up the spine. Through this process the body, mind and spirit are brought together in an integrated experience of the universal self.
[not taught on the schedule this month; check back to confirm start dates!]

POWER VINYASA YOGA - [some yoga experience required.]

(this class MAY be taught in a warm room that is heated to aprox. 85 degrees; see if "heated" or "warm" is marked on the schedule next to the class name)
Sweat, Surrender, Serenity! Practiced in a heated room, Power Yoga is a challenging vinyasa-based style of yoga that focuses on building heat to burn away mental, physical, and emotional toxins. We'll flow on the rhythm of the breath through Sun Salutations and use the heat to move further into the body with progressively more intense poses. Often described as a meditation in motion, Power Yoga offers an active and intense practice meant to quiet your mind as you detoxify the body and cultivate the energy of the breath. Emphasizing safety and alignment, modifications will be offered so that everyone can work at their own pace with their own authentic breath. You will leave feeling stronger, centered and refreshed.
[taught throughout the week at various time at the Harvard Sq., Newbury St. and Allston/B.U. locations; check each studio's schedule page to confirm!]

PRANA-INSPIRED VINYASA YOGA - [some yoga experience required]

This is a mindful and embodied flow class that builds upon the body's natural rhythms and motions that bring pleasure and strength. Not only will we get a workout but we will become more attuned to our hearts' needs and desires. We explore various ways to deepen our yoga practice through breath, core strengthening, creative imagery and fluid movement. This class will inspire you to find your inner resources to meet your goals.
[not taught on the schedule this month; check back to confirm start dates!]

PRANAVAYU YOGA - [some yoga experience required.]

PranaVayu Yoga is a flowing vinyasa practice that blends an exercise science based approach to postural practices with traditional meditative techniques from the Buddhist tradition. This challenging, heart opening practice is perfect for those who wish to change the body AND free the mind in a fun and uplifting way.
[taught at the Newbury St. location, Tuesdays at 6:00 pm; check the Newbury St. studio schedule to confirm!]

PRENATAL YOGA - [no yoga experience required, beginners welcome.]

This class is suitable for any woman in any stage of pregnancy. Prenatal yoga offers a time to tune out the rest of the world and tune in to the amazing creation of both a baby and a mother. Yoga addresses our wholistic being, encouraging us to grow stronger and become more flexible in all realms – physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. A regular prenatal yoga practice helps connect to and listen to our bodies, confront our worries, and develop the courage to enter parenthood. Classes are a lot of fun too – participants often develop close bonds with other students.
[take this class at the Harvard Sq. location, Mondays at 5:45 pm; check the Harvard Sq. studio schedule to confirm!]

STRONG FLOW YOGA - [no yoga experience required, beginners welcome.]

This class is our own Angelo Gala's special style of vinyasa inspired by the athlete / practitioner who wants to dial it back, enjoy the fruits of their labor, balance the tension in their body by opening new ranges of motion, and quiet the chatter of their mind. Standing postures are utilized with the intent to build heat in preparation for the mixed combination of long and short holds of seated postures sequenced intentionally to open up deeper expressions of traditional poses.
[take this class at the Newbury St. location, Tuesdays/Thursdays at 6:45 am & Fridays at 12:30 pm; check the Newbury St. studio schedule to confirm!]

VINYASA FLOW YOGA - [some yoga experience required.]

(this class MAY be taught in a warm room that is heated to aprox. 85 degrees; see if "heated" or "warm" is marked on the schedule next to the class name)
This very popular contemporary yoga style requires a good-working knowledge of the basic yoga poses. The class leads through a series of breath-synchronized postures which are linked to one another through a flowing movement--thus "flowing" into one another and inspiring the style name, Flow ('Vinyasa" in Sanskrit) Yoga. Each movement of the body is harmonized to each breath taken, so the breath is not forced to follow the actions of the body as occurs with other forms of exercise.

Please note: this general-style class is conducted in a unique way by each different instructor--so Vinyasa with one teacher might not be the same experience as Vinyasa with another teacher.  More reason to try more yoga and explore different approaches by all of our great teachers! :)
[take this class
at various times throughout the week at the Harvard Sq., Newbury St. and Allston/B.U. locations; check each studio's schedule page to confirm!]

VINYASA FLOW & RESTORE YOGA - [some yoga experience required.]

This class brings together the elegant, flowing motion of vinyasa yoga with the grounding stillness and silence of yin yoga. In one word, this class is an exploration of equanimity.

It is the balance between muscle-strengthening, breath-expanding vinyasa yoga and the meditative, tissue-healing practice of yin yoga. We will blend these two polarities together to create a consolidated flow which uses the breath and alignment in an energizing vinyasa practice and which cultivates our yin awareness and our inner witness to descend deep into our bodies to nourish our joints and connective tissue.

This practice is a union of of energy-generating vinyasa and energy-receiving yin. So, come, play, re-align and find your center.
[take this class at the Newbury St. location, Sundays at 5:30 pm; check Newbury St. studio schedule to confirm!]

YIN YOGA - [no experience required, beginners welcome.]

This lusciously slow and meditative practice is the yogic prescription for chronic tension, feelings of overwhelm, longterm physical imbalance, and/or exhaustion. It is the perfect compliment to more vigorous yoga styles, and a great balancer for high-stress living.

Through the elegant combination of appropriate asana and gentle timing, Yin Yoga deeply stretches and nourishes the joints of the body, helping to generate much greater flexibility and core-level relaxation. Yin Yoga is not boring, in fact the poses and cues will challenge and inspire you--and the relaxation is mindful and deep.

The practice is designed to bring your Central Nervous System into "Rest, Digest and Restore" mode, where healing work at the cellular level can occur--like digestion, muscle repair, scar tissue production, organ detoxification and emotional processing. 

Yin yoga sequences are also often linked to Meridian theory, similar to the practice of acupuncture, and can help open up and balance the body's energetic pathways. Think of it as an efficient way to catch up on all that sleep you missed over the years! 
[take this class at the Newbury St. location, Mondays at 5:45pm; check the Newbury St. studio schedule to confirm!]

not yoga

The following classes are taught at our studios because they complement, enrich, or are related to the practice of yoga (alphabetically listed):

BOLLYWOOD DANCE - [no experience required, beginners welcome.]

The Bollywood form of dance is an art that fuses India's most traditional dances such as bhangra, garba, and classical bharatnatyam with the hustle and bustle of Western forms such as hip-hop, salsa, and jazz. Bollywood dance is not only a form movement but it is an artistic expression in which themes of drama, comedy, and romance are all involved.

We will learn all the dance moves from scratch, so bring only your spirit for fun, adventure and great music. You will quickly learn one of the more popular styles of dance in India and have a blast!
[not taught on the schedule this month; check back to confirm start dates!]

QI GONG AND DAOIST / ZEN MEDITATION - [no experience required, beginners welcome.]

The Chinese equivalent of yoga, this is an ancient exercise that uses simple flowing movements, breath control, and "standing" meditation. Easily accessible to beginners, it is an excellent tool to promote overall strength in the body, freedom in the joints, and calmness in the mind.
[take this class at the Newbury St. location, Saturdays at 6:00 pm; check the Newbury St. studio schedule to confirm!]