By Olivia Janisch

Neutrals, Twists and Core with Vytas is an incredibly invigorating and challenging thirty-minute flow. Slowly building in intensity, the challenge comes form the intense mental practice of being completely present and aware of our alignment. Bendy and open in our hips, many yogis feel inclined to splay open at every opportunity. This class calls for the discipline to monitor our hips and glutes in order for us to achieve balance and alignment.

Starting with core activating exercises, the class immediately taps into your udyana bandha, where our physical and emotional power lies. Tapping into this early on helps steady us physically for the challenging twists, and gets us mentally prepared to be aware of how far we should be pushing ourselves. Activating the udyana bundha enables you to locate the position where twists need to come from, and let’s you develop a lightness and ease that allows you to lead with your heart.

After warming up with some sun salutations, we move towards first warrior, crescent pose, chair pose, third warrior, and triangle. Progressing into twisting variations of each of these poses massages our inner organs, wringing out toxins that weigh us down over time, mentally and physically.

The most important element of class is keeping a square hip throughout all of the movements. So many of us want to reach the final pose that we compromise our alignment to have our fingers and gaze pointing to the sky. Placing your hand on your lower back will help you to see if you’re going further than you should be. As you twist, your back should be flat, indicating that your hips are square. If you can’t shift your hips square, then it’s an indication that you need to back out of the pose.

Lubricating your spine and tapping into your core, this class calls for you to watch for your limitations and have a lightness of heart. Twists are extremely challenging, and having a beginner’s mind lets you move into the poses with an awareness of your own capabilities. Every movement requires you to check in to make sure you’re not compromising another part of the pose, so it’s a very introspective flow. Grounding and energizing, this class will push you to explore new areas of your body and practice.


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