A warm welcome! We're delighted to have you as a part of our community and part of an unlikely story. When five friends teaching yoga in a parish hall asked their mentors and senior teachers to join them, a circle of friends was born. Faculty who'd always wanted to teach together came under one roof and what evolved is now New England's premier yoga school, home to some of America's finest yoga teachers and one of the most vibrant, authentic sanghas (communities) around. Those humble origins are in the fabric of the walls. Everything you see is the creation of a yoga student - the open flow design of the studio, the art, photography, the 20 year old bonsais, even our book keeper is a yogi. It's a personal place – people know each other's names and we're famed for revolving our decisions around our students. So if you're new, don't be shy - treat the studio as your home and tell us anything we can do to ensure that this is a supportive, inspiring, beautiful place for you to practice.
Down Under Yoga is a place of learning and teaching. You'll find a theme of respect flowing throughout the studio – respect for the 5000 year old practice of yoga, respect for each other, respect for the planet. As teachers and students, we are now the stewards of this ancient tradition and so the way you act off the mat is as important as what you do on it.
Respecting Each Other is part of the practice. When you come in, we ask you to put down the push and shove of the competitive world. Turn off your cell, lay down your armor and begin to act from the most decent, patient parts of you. Namaste means "the best in me honors the best in you" and that manifests in the small acts of kindness we show each other. You'll notice the studio design is deliberately all light, glass and elements of earth, creating a feeling of community and transparency very in keeping with how we teach and run the studio. Mindful of your friends practicing inside, whispering in the lobby both quiets your senses for practice and is an act of generosity towards your colleagues. Please arrive 10 minutes before class and if you need to leave early, ask the teacher and leave before savasana. Bring only what you need - your own mat (towel & water bottle for flow) and leave big bags and excess stuff at home. These small acts of graciousness make for an environment that is warm, welcoming, deeply authentic and respectful.
Respecting the Student: We don't presume to know which style or teacher is right for you but simply offer you rich possibilities and invite your curiosity. Every teacher here is working on a different aspect of your practice. Each tradition whispers its own secrets. We invite you to try everything. You don't need to know about yoga philosophy, but if you're interested, you'll find many doorways for deeper learning, from our monthly philosophy group to workshops and lectures.
Respecting the Tradition: We believe that yoga should challenge your habits, not reinforce them. So a student who loves flow is often the one who struggles with stillness. The student who delights in precision gains something different when asked to move with the rhythm of the body and breath. We will always encourage you to practice what is heavenly and what is hardest for you, to expand your practice and your possibilities. If you love our vigorous Vinyasa but never learned how to do the poses correctly, come explore the alignment of Iyengar, the tranquility of Relax N' Renew or take advantage of 20 minute tutorials and privates to explore new areas, specific poses or limitations you have.
Respecting the Philosophy: We believe yoga studios should operate in a manner consistent with the teachings of yoga. We promise never to sell $150 yoga pants or yoga 'gear' (because aparigraha means 'not possessing' and what you wear just doesn't matter). We don't sell plastic water bottles that go into landfill (because ahimsa means 'do no harm'). We won't accept corporate offers to promote products in exchange for free goods or publicity (because satya means 'truthfulness'). And we will never brand, trademark, or pretend we've made up a new style of yoga because humility is the whole point.
Down Under Yoga is committed to building strong bones, but also to building bonds between people, bridges between communities. We regularly take yoga off the mat with our charity classes for local and global causes, potlucks, lectures, donations to schools across Newton and initiatives around the world. These things we are unwilling to compromise on because they define the very nature of who we are as a community.