Tantra Flow Yoga™ is a style of yoga that combines vinyasa flow with principles of Tantra.
I’m often asked about Tantra’s link to sex practices, however Tantra is in fact defined as “the means to expand one’s experience and comprehension beyond the material in order to attain Self Liberation or realization.” In other words, if one is steeped in Tantra, one’s humility increases because we see the goodness in everyone. The main technique to get to this awareness is through meditation, not sex.
Tantra Flow Yoga™ was created in 2014 to meet the needs of students who were hungry for more than the next advanced asana pose and were seeking meaning to their practice. Tantra believes in vibrations as energy and works to heal both ourselves and others. Incorporating the tenets of Tantra into a flowing yoga practice is deeply expansive and provides a multitude of physical and emotional benefits.
When one is steeped in Tantra, one is able to see the divinity in each moment, even the difficult, which expands the heart wider than you can imagine. Tantra Flow Yoga™ is one method to approaching this result.
Tantra is a Sanskrit term made of the words Tanoti and Trayati.
Tanoti means “to extend or expand, to stretch”
Trayati means “to free or liberate”
- Tantra is a toolbox of techniques.
Some of these tools include: Mantra, Kriyas, specific mediations, specific Pranayamas, specific methods of breathing, Mudras, etc. All are designed to break down negativity in the body, breath, and mind. Then positive vibrations are added to grow and expand from inside-outward.
- “The world inside you is the same as the world outside you.”
Tantra sees the external world as a direct reflection of our own internal world, (mind, emotions, health, etc.) If our life is not going well on the outside, Tantrics believes that we must look to our internal world for changes. Like attracts like. When our internal vibration is positive it will attract more positive external circumstances. We learn to take responsibility for our lives and how it is unfolding.
- Tantra works with energy or ‘Shakti’; Creative Life Force.
Everything that is living vibrates; from the movement of the body to words we speak, to the pattern of our breath, to our deepest thoughts.
- Tantra is not afraid of negativity.
Instead of running away from problems, conflict, and our own darkness, Tantra looks towards these difficulties. When we look at something, we shine a little light on it and it is no longer dark. Tantra is not afraid of life. It looks at our inner fears with love to break down the illusion of separation. We move through difficulty to thoroughly understand it. Behind every dark challenge is another aspect of love.
Tantra Flow Yoga™ Uses
- Ayurveda. Practices are designed to honor the doshas (our constitution) and the gunas, (qualities of Nature that originate in the mind).
- Pranayama. Mindful working with the breath. The practice of breath expansion has a significant impact on our postures, physiology, and the activity of our mind. A student’s respiratory system will also strengthen with this system
- Specific sequencing. Similar shapes follow similar shapes to build towards a specific pose or direction. The goal is not just to get a posture, the goal is to affect the energy of the student, moving them closer to what they need and further away from imbalance
- The mind. Some options include visualization and mantra. You may be invited to courageously face negativity that dwells underneath the surface and work with tools to change the negative habit. Or you may be invited to imagine abundant love and magnify it. One learns to welcome the activity of the mind instead of deny it, for it is another form of energy.
- Yoga philosophy. To keep us inspired and on the path.
- The needs of the student. The intention is to remove the darkness and access the brightness within each student. When positive energy is built, there is a greater potential for a student to access their True Essence, their True Self. This is the whole point of yoga, to realize the divinity within our heart.
Tantra Flow Yoga™ Class
- Commonly starts out with Pranayama to set the intention for the direction of the class and can often be woven throughout the practice.
- Uses creative sequencing towards an energetic result. While some classes may include a balance of all posture types, some classes dive deeper into a posture category to receive the full benefits of that direction.
- Includes attention on breath (breathing in a specific direction or ratio, etc.) and the mind (use of Mantra, Chakra awareness, visualization, etc.) in conjunction with the postures.
- Has a specific intention to raise, lower, calm or balance your energy. There is no one general goal, it depends on what the student needs.
- Ends in a serene realization of who you truly are.
- Is not just an exercise class. It will embody you on many levels.
- Leaves you feeling really, really amazing. And it’s fun!