“The body is the way to our spirit, to our true Self.
That’s what asana is for”.
Tim Feldmann is the director of Miami Life Center, the yoga shala he founded with his wife Kino MacGregor and Matt Tashjian. He was set on the yoga path by his first teacher Lino Miele and is Authorized to teach directly by the founder of the Ashtanga Yoga Method, Sri K. Pattabhi Jois, and his grandson, R. Sharath Jois. A practitioner of the Advanced A series Tim is dedicated to Ashtanga Yoga’s traditional method.
A near fatal falling accident in 1992 led Tim on the yogic path. His teaching integrates extensive studies of F.M. Alexander Technique and sitting meditation with 20 years of experience as a professional dancer and an internationally acclaimed choreographer. His in-depth knowledge of functional anatomy, alignment as well as the idiosyncratic body and mind in stillness and in motion creates the platform upon which his solid understanding of the Ashtanga method rests.
Tim’s humorous, straight forward yet profound teaching style makes him a cherished teacher, traveling extensively throughout Asia, Australia, Europe and the Americas.
The Ashtanga Yoga Vinyasa system is sequences of postures that vary in difficulty and benefit. The flow between each posture is an integral part of the practice.
There are three groups of movement sequences and six series in total: The Primary Series, Yoga Chikitsa, cleanses and tunes especially the physical body. The Intermediate Series, Nadi Shodhana, purifies the nervous system, opening up for more subtle experiences of our energies and mind. The Advanced Series A, B, C and D, Sthira Bhaga, literally meaning strength and grace, which further explores flexibility, vigor and tranquility as an integrated synergy, requiring higher levels of humility and dedication. Each series of postures must be accomplished before proceeding to the next. The practice is cumulative and it is essential to follow the order of postures (asanas) meticulously as each individual asana builds on the previous one and prepares practitioners for the next. The sequential process of learning Ashtanga Yoga allows its practitioners to develop the concentration, strength, flexibility and stamina needed to progress in a safe and balanced manner. Each asana, or group of asanas, has a specific effect that is counter balanced by the previous asana, or group of asanas.
Postures are linked together through flowing movement (vinyasa). Vinyasa means breath synchronized with movement. In Ashtanga Yoga the movement is always synchronized with the breath and there is never a separation between the two actions. When the synchronization of movement and breathing is an integral part of the yoga practice and the three body locks (Moolabandha, Udiyanabandha and jalandarabandha) are applied, an internal, purifying heat is generated in the body. Unwanted toxins are released and disposed of, vital hormones and minerals flow into the bloodstream and the nervous system is purified. The result is a light and strong body.
Ashtanga Yoga utilizes a three-pronged approach called Tristana. Tristana consists of correct breathing (Ujjayi), yoga postures/asanas (including correct use of the bandhas), and the precise gazeing (dristi). This is both a method and a state and practitioners develope control of the senses, a deep awareness of themsleves and their inner sensations, emotions and workings of the mind. By maintaining this discipline with regularity and devotion, practitioners develop steadiness of body and mind.
The eight branches mutually support each other and are to be learned and taken into daily committed action. An established asana practice prepares dedicated yogis for a balanced practice of the more subtle limbs such as pranayama and meditation. Embodying the Yamas and Niyamas is of essence if any of the eight limbs are to take effect. At the very heart of yoga is ethical living, honesty and compassion.
How to Learn
Please note that you should learn only from a traditionally trained teacher who follows the lineage of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois to ensure a safe and healthy journey for the body and mind into the science of the Ashtanga Method to yoga.
What wisdom can you find that is greater than kindness?
Here are a few options to get in touch with me. Feel welcome to take your favorite pick or just come down to Miami’s South Beach for the sun, a swim and some Ashtanga yoga.
Miami Life Center
736 Sixth street
Miami Beach, FL 33139, USA