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OUR CLASSES

SHALA

The Mysore style of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga is a particular way of teaching yoga within the Ashtanga Yoga tradition as taught originally by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois. The class is not “led” as a whole but rather all instruction is one-on-one within the group class setting. Students practice their own portion of the Ashtanga sequence of asanas at their own pace. Each pose is individually tailored to meet your specific physical needs and ability level. The teacher assists and adjusts each student individually. Students develop their own practice and work at their own breath rate. It’s like having a private class within a group!

The essence of Ashtanga Yoga lies in a Mysore-style practice, that introduces to the main facets of Ashtanga yoga: Vinyasa (link between movement and breath), Ujjayi Pranayama (a powerful heating breath), Drishti (gaze) and the Bandhas (internal energy locks). This is where students cultivate their inner focus and strength with self-effort and acquire confidence, physical strength, flexibility, and peace of mind.

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In this class you will be introduced to the principles of the practice, its benefits and the basics of its philosophy. You will experience the foundations of this method such as Ujjayi (breath), Drishti (gaze), alignment of breath and movement in the sun salutations and fundamental poses. This workshop is a foundation for a safe and conscious practice, and initiates the journey into self-awareness. This class is ideal for students new to yoga or to the Ashtanga method.

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Children from the age of 6 are welcome to join Silat master Adji for our fun filled Balinese martial arts class. Improve your childʼs mental focus while getting plenty of exercise and fun. No experience necessary. Bali Martial Arts are an ancient method of training your mind, body and spirit to act as one. Balinese Pencak Silat is an ideal martial arts discipline for kids, it allows them to be physically active yet instilling a sense of calm and patience at the same time. Whether you have young children or young adults, martial arts class offers them a fun way to improve their physical health while they learn about philosophy and self-defense skills. Adji will give an overview of the history of the Pencak Silat arts and will introduce the practice and how the every part of the body is used. Martial arts class for kids is taught in a fun, safe, and non-competitive environment. Our classes are designed to have fun, to learn new skills, and to become knowledgeable not in the art of self-defense, but in the lessons of life.

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Yoga is one of the most basic ways to balance each chakra because it creates alignment in the physical body. Balancing and stabilizing your physical body through asana practice also rebalances your subtle body. This realigns the chakras, which regulate specific behaviors, and makes it easier to overcome outdated patterns, beliefs, and habits. Chakra yoga is the practice of using yoga postures and controlled breath, known as pranayama, to cleanse, balance, and open the chakras, or energy centers, of the body. Postures associated with hatha yoga are oen adopted in chakra yoga because theyʼre designed to keep the body aligned (or straight); namely, the spine — which is the key highway for the flow of chakra energy. Practicing chakra yoga also introduces elements of meditation, which helps sharpen the mind while balancing and opening the chakras.

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Hatha Yoga is an ancient system of Yoga that includes the practice of asanas (yoga postures) and pranayama (breathing exercises), which help bring peace to the mind and body, preparing the body for deeper spiritual practices such as meditation. Hatha is a Sanskrit word that can be broken down into two smaller words: ha, meaning “sun,” and tha, meaning “moon.” The word may also mean “willful” or “forceful.” Through the practice of Hatha yoga, the individual attempts to balance the mind, body and body’s energies through specific asanas and controlled, meditative breathing that complements the physical movements of the body. In a Hatha class, you will explore the posture fully and understand how to work with your body and your mind. Hatha Yoga is a great place to learn how to do poses properly and safely. Hatha Yoga is ideal for those interested in developing or enriching their foundational practice.

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Kundalini yoga is also called the “yoga of awareness.”The practice was brought to the West in 1969 by Yogi Bajan, and provides an opportunity to work with the Divine within. The primary aim of Kundalini yoga is to awaken the Kundalini energy, which lies coiled, serpent-like, at the base of the spine. Kundalini Yoga is designed to raise complete body awareness to prepare the body, nervous system, and mind to handle the energy of Kundalini rising. In Kundalini yoga, practitioners use breathing exercises, physical postures, chanting and meditation to unlock this energy.

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Ashtanga Primary Series. This class refers to the full primary series of the ashtanga system, as taught in the tradition of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois of Mysore, India. We will use ujjayi breath and bandhas (energy locks) to increases muscular strength, flexibility, and concentration.

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In a Led Primary Series class, the teacher calls out the postures and Vinyasas (counted movements linking the postures with the breath) of the Ashtanga Primary Series. The group moves and breathes together in sync. These are dynamic, focused, highly energetic classes. A Led Primary Series class helps to reveal ineffectual self-practice habits such as a wandering mind, losing the connection with the breath, or fidgeting between postures, and provides an opportunity to refine your practice by following the ‘count’ as it is traditionally prescribed and breathing at a more steady, slow and controlled pace.

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Meditation is the process of quieting the mind in order to spend time in thought for relaxation or spiritual purposes. The goal is to attain an inner state of awareness and intensify personal and spiritual growth. In practice, meditation involves concentrated focus on something such as sound, image or breath. The meditation classes are built to suit every level from those simply wishing to relax with meditation to those who wish to train in an authentic spiritual path. All our classes are designed to help you gain control over your mind and integrate positive ways of thinking into the course of your everyday life.

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Meditation gives us something that nothing else can: it introduces us to ourselves on all levels, bringing peace of mind, calmness, equanimity and a sense of wellbeing. Meditation, or Dhyana, is the last rung of Patanjali’s Ashtanga Yoga before Samadhi or liberation. Meditation is a sustained concentration and it isn’t a practice by itself, but the result of a one-pointed concentration. Whether the means of one-pointedness is the breath, a Mantra, some visualizations or a sound, the goal of the practice is to attain an inner state of awareness that will intensify our personal and spiritual growth. It must be practiced and experienced to be fully appreciated.

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Pencak Silat is an umbrella term for a class of related Indonesian martial arts. Pencak is the essence of training, the outward aspect of the art which a casual observer is permitted to witness as performance. Silat is the essence of combat and self-defense, the true fighting application of the techniques which are kept secret from outsiders and not divulged to students until the guru deems them ready. While other definitions exist, all agree that silat cannot exist without pencak, and pencak without silat skills is purposeless. Pencak Silat was practiced not only for physical defense but also for mental discipline.

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Reiki is a Japanese form of healing to reduce stress and promote relaxation. One of the greatest Reiki healing health benefits is stress reduction and relaxation, which triggers the bodies natural healing abilities, and improves and maintains health. Reiki healing is a natural therapy that gently balances life energies and brings health and well being to the recipient.Join Agung Vijaya for a Reiki Circle to explore more about this universal healing energy and how to apply it in every day life.

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Restorative yoga is a form of yoga that seeks to achieve physical, mental and emotional relaxation with the aid of props. The use of props makes it easier for you to maintain balance while you are stimulating and relaxing your body. While some restorative yoga poses are beneficial to the entire body, others target specific areas. A restorative yoga sequence typically involves only five or six poses, supported by props that allow you to completely relax and rest. Held for 5 minutes or more, restorative poses include light twists, seated forward folds, and gentle backbends. These postures are usually deeply supported by blankets, blocks, or other props and have a particular ability to leave us nourished and well-rested. Most restorative practices are based on the teachings of B.K.S. Iyengar. Restorative yoga poses will calm and reset your entire body and mind to prepare you for ultimate relaxation in Corpse Pose.

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The word Hatha is a combination of two separate “bija mantras” or single syllables. “Tha” represents the moon or the mind, the mental energy, and “ha” represents the sun or the vital life force, the pranic energy. Tantra Yoga is a combination of Asana, Pranayama and meditation practices that direct the universal energies into the practitioner. Meaning “to weave” in Sanskrit, the term Tantra is derived from two words: “Tanoti”, which means “to stretch” or “to expand,” and “Trayati”, which means “liberation.” Tantra Yoga expands consciousness and liberates the practitioner from the physical plane of existence. Anna designs her Tantric Hatha classes using the Vinyasa Krama system. Vinyasa Krama, which means “wise progression”, is a traditional and time tested principle of sequencing created by Krishnamacharya. Rather than performing each asana as an independent pose disconnected from the whole, Vinyasa Krama mimics the flowing energy of the universe. The mind, body and breath are unified into a state of harmony. Vinyasa krama also uses variations of each asana to open the potential of the mind and body. Therefore, Anna creates a flow that focuses on the inner and outer alignments, and that helps to develop strength, flexibility and balance – physically, mentally and emotionally.

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Yin yoga is based on the Taoist concept of yin and yang, opposite and complementary principles in nature. Yin is the stable, unmoving, hidden aspect of things and offers a much deeper access to the body; In the body, the relatively stiff connective tissues (tendons, ligaments, fascia) are yin, while the more mobile and pliable muscles and blood are yang. It is a more meditative approach with a physical focus much deeper than Yang like practices. A Yin yoga class usually consists of a series of long-held, passive floor poses that mainly work on the yin tissues – also known as the connective tissues. Connective tissue responds best to a slow, steady load which is why we hold the poses for longer. The poses are held for up to five minutes, sometimes longer. Different Yin yoga poses stimulate and remove blockages in the myofascial meridians in the body. This has the effect of balancing the body’s internal organs and systems.

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This special class combines a Yin Yoga practice with the healing sound vibrations of life music, allowing to relax your whole body. Yin yoga postures are designed to open up the body by using prolonged deep stretching techniques that put both your body and mind in a state of profound relaxation. Sound baths move the brain into deeper brain wave frequencies, inducing meditative and peaceful states that allow for clarity of mind and intuition. A few benefits of sound healing are: Improved sleep; deep sense of tranquility; relief from stress, anxiety, depression and emotional pain. The merging of these practices will guide you into a meditative state, allowing you to surrender, release, let go and heal. TEACHER

CULTURE

Usada’s is happy to have its first event that will feature the ancient Balinese form or type of Feng Shui with Yoga, Architect who also happen to be a Mangku. This ancient vernacular architectural practice has been used for centuries to plan the layouts of Villages, Temples, Homes and much more. Please join us through a presentation and interactive discussion on this fascinating field of knowledge & wisdom.

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Children from the age of 6 are welcome to join Silat master Adji for our fun filled Balinese martial arts class. Improve your childʼs mental focus while getting plenty of exercise and fun. No experience necessary. Bali Martial Arts are an ancient method of training your mind, body and spirit to act as one. Balinese Pencak Silat is an ideal martial arts discipline for kids, it allows them to be physically active yet instilling a sense of calm and patience at the same time. Whether you have young children or young adults, martial arts class offers them a fun way to improve their physical health while they learn about philosophy and self-defense skills. Adji will give an overview of the history of the Pencak Silat arts and will introduce the practice and how the every part of the body is used. Martial arts class for kids is taught in a fun, safe, and non-competitive environment. Our classes are designed to have fun, to learn new skills, and to become knowledgeable not in the art of self-defense, but in the lessons of life.

TEACHER

Dance is an integral part of Balinese cultural life. Not only is it an artistic performing art that is both recreational and entertaining, it is also frequently associated with ceremonial activities, and is an expression of devotion to the Gods.In this 90-minute class, you will learn basic steps, hand gestures, and delicate eye movements, then move on gradually to actually practicing a classical dance. Dewi has been dancing for more than 30 years, and comes from a long lineage of artists. It will be a fun, exciting and insightful Balinese dance class. Start by letting your steps lead you to our beautiful shala on wednesday at 3pm.

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Among the most beautiful landscapes of Bali are the irrigated, terraced rice fields of the Subak system, which are now classified UNESCO world heritage. Please join Usada and Chakra Widia (www.sawahbali.org) in exploring the rich history of this sustainable, indigenous farming system, which is now being threatened by monoculture and growth. Chakra will share his passion and broader view on how permaculture can save the “Sawah Hijau” and its indigenous farming community. I Made Chakra was born in 1973 to a rice farming family near Ubud, Bali. Coincidentally, this was the same year the so-called “Green Revolution” introduced chemical farming to Bali. Fortunately the Balinese love of nature and trust of their traditions slowed down the inroads of this new, less sustainable agriculture. Chakra was able to grow up in a time where the people didnʼt need money for food; edible vegetation, fish, eels, and birds all thrived together in the rice fields. Now that chemical farming has destroyed so much of this sustainable eco system, Chakraʼs wish is that that his own children will be to able experience what he knew in his childhood; with the land restored to its abundant heritage. He knows he canʼt do this alone, so he works to build connections with others on the same path, working for a healthy environment, healthy people and a healthy future. After completing his study on sustainable development, 4 years pioneering green tourism in UK and gaining commercial experience in his hometown, Chakra has devoted himself to developing sustainable agriculture and technology across Indonesia; from tsunami-ravaged Aceh, to the rice fields of Bali, where he has pioneered an effective organic Intensification System for nutritious, heritage red rice. Chakraʼs knowledge and practical skills range from appropriate technology and permaculture design, training and project management, to consultancy for international NGOs.

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AA Gede Bagus Mandera Erawan is one of the living legends of Peliatanʼs rich dance history. Affectionately known as “Gungaji” he will lead us through the history of Balinese dance in the Ubud Area. His father was with the original 1932 troupe that traveled to Paris and Amsterdam. He and his brother continue to produce legendary performances at Balerung theater in Peliatan.

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Pencak Silat is an umbrella term for a class of related Indonesian martial arts. Pencak is the essence of training, the outward aspect of the art which a casual observer is permitted to witness as performance. Silat is the essence of combat and self-defense, the true fighting application of the techniques which are kept secret from outsiders and not divulged to students until the guru deems them ready. While other definitions exist, all agree that silat cannot exist without pencak, and pencak without silat skills is purposeless. Pencak Silat was practiced not only for physical defense but also for mental discipline.

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We are thrilled that our multi-talented friend, the artist Satya Cipta, will be presenting an informative and visually delightful seminar on the history of Balinese painting. We will see howpaintings and their styles have evolved from the religious iconography of the 15th century, to the diversity of the present day. We will also discover that for a relatively small geographical area,Bali has given birth to an astonishing variety of artists and artistic expression, and find out how Balinese art expresses so beautifully a connection and intimacy with life itself.

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ABOUT LONTAR
The Lontar Palm leaf painting is only to be found in Bali and is an ancient way of recording and transmitting the Sanskrit Ramayana stories. Lontar – The word ‘lontarʼ is derived from two Old Javanese words, being ‘ronʼ (leaf) and ‘talʼ (rontal tree). The word ‘rontalʼ therefore means ‘leaf of the rontal treeʼ. The rontal tree belongs to the family of palm trees (Borassus fabellifer). The Lontar Palmleaves are made from the Palmyra palm. The leaves used come from Tianyar, a village in the east part of Bali near the sea, where this Palmyra palter with itʼs fan-shaped leaves grow. When the leaves are minimum two years old, they are cut. It is important that the leaf itself (rontal) and the grain of the leaf are straight. the cut leaves are boiled in a mixture of water and secret ingredients to soften the leaf and keep it from yellowing. The boiling will also make the engraving easier. After this process the leaves are spread out to dry for one day. They will then be all curled and bent. They are cut into size, stacked and bound together to flatten them. The leaves are left at least one year to dry completely and be soft enough to work with them. The best of them are used to write the Sanskrit Hindu-writting. With a knife (pengetupa) the drawing or sanskrit text is engraved in the leaves. A special colour (tingkih) is made by burning macadamia nuts with other secret ingredients. This ink is rubbed into the lines to make the drawing on the leaf (lontar) visible.

ABOUT IKAT
Ikat, or ikkat, is a dyeing technique used to pattern textiles that employs resist dyeing on the yarns prior to dyeing and weaving the fabric. Ikat weavings tell a story and even today contain borders reminiscent of ancient trade cloths used in the spice trade of the 1600s. Many weavings are used in religious ceremonies. Ikat is a type of weaving where the pattern is pre-designed and the threads are pre-dyed. It is painstaking work.

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SPECIAL EVENTS

Buddhist Dharma talks at Usada focus on basic explanations of the Buddha’s teachings in accord with the unadulterated principles of Buddhist practice. The purpose of these principles is to show us how to free ourselves from delusions and their resultant suffering.

 

TEACHERS

  • Rio Helmi

Usada is happy to be offering the brilliant work of Dewa Putu Berata & Cudamani (http://cudamani.org/) in the presentation of the Kecak an ancient form of music done to gather the community together, to heal and create harmony by creating music with our voices.
Pak Dewa Berata, Director of Çudamani, known internationally for his creative compositions and charisma as a teacher and performer leads this workshop.


Participants learn the fundamentals of the interlocking vocal patterns at the core of Kecak as well as the body movements that are integrated with the music. An opportunity to work with Pak Dewa feel the healing energy of the Cak.

 

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  • Dewa

Rio Helmi has been based in Bali for the last four decades and has been working as a photographer since 1979. His work spans photojournalism, documentary photography, and to a lesser extent commercial work. Amongst other things, he has documented remote tribes in Southeast Asia, ritual and trance in Bali, Buddhism in Mongolia and Tibetan settlements in India, political upheaval in Thailand and Indonesia, migrant workers in Bali, the volcanic events in Bali, and for four years a series on the disappearing beauty of Ubud.

 

Rio Helmi
Born in 1954 to an Indonesian diplomat father and a Turkish mother, Indonesian photographer and writer Rio Helmi has been capturing images of Asia and writing since 1978. His work can be seen in magazines, documentaries and more than 20 large format photographic books. Solo exhibitions of Rioʼs still photography have been held in Bali, Jakarta, Madrid, Miyazaki, Palo Alto, San Francisco, and Sydney, and his works are held in private collections around the world including in London, Rome, Boston, Washington and Tokyo.Rio has in the past focused on the interaction between indigenous peoples and their environment, and as a result has traveled extensively across the Indonesian archipelago and further afield across Asia including Malaysia, Myanmar, Thailand, Japan, Ladakh and Mongolia, photographing both remote tribal people and modern urban life.

 

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  • Rio Helmi

WORKSHOPS

Find inspiration for creating a mandala using the symbolic language of Sacred Geometry. Learn how to create patterns with compass and ruler, explore colour through painting with acrylic colour, while taking time to relax and go deeper with this active meditation.

 

Mandala Therapy
Creating your own personal mandala is therapeutic, symbolic & a beautiful reflection of ones own soul.Present emotions will be represented in your mandala through the use of organically formed shapes & colour. By allowing your instinct and feelings to inspire & guide you through the process of creation, a portrait of yourself will emerge. When you reach your destination, you will have a representation of something meaningful and personal that you can take home with you.

Suitable for beginners and those with previous experience, age 14 to adult. Materials are provided, but do bring your own brushes, pencils, ruler and compass if you prefer.

 

TEACHERS

  • Luh Devie Ariestian

Mudras (gesture, seal) are subtle physical movements of the hands, face, and or body.
The purpose of a mudra is to activate and create a circuit of prana in the body. This circuit channels the prana in a specific way to create a subtle effect on koshas and to regulate and awaken the prana, chakras and kundalini.There are many kinds of Mudras, Some are performed by practicing yoga asanas (postures) and others by chanting certain mantras (rhythmic chants) such as Gayathri Mantra. Mudras influence the flow of energy within the body at a cellular level, thereby improving oneʼs health and wellbeing and it can be practiced by anyone and anytime.By the end of 2.5 hour workshop the participant will be able to learn 10 Mudras and can use them effectively in their daily practice. Each mudra has its own benefits and has a specific mantra to help dissolve karma and to restore balance and wellbeing. In todayʼs time and era where there is so much of stress, Mudra is an effective way to release negative emotions and replacing these with positive energy.

 

TEACHERS

  • Luh Devie Ariestian