The Practice Room highlights the techniques of Iyengar yoga
One of the few independent studios teaching and practicing yoga in the tradition of BKS Iyengar, The Practice Room calls Wheeler Road Extension home. Started by Jaya Chakravarty, the lead teacher, her husband and assistant trainer, Mohan Polamar (referred to as the Man of The House by Chakravarty), the duo moved to the city two years ago and started lessons, only formally moving into this studio a few months ago. Invited to a morning session, we went armed with our courage as this was the first time we were learning asanas from this school of yoga.
Expecting the class to be more like a casual fitness group as is with many other such centres, we were surprised by the disciplined nature of the class. Not austere by any stretch of imagination, Chakravarty does however take her practice seriously and expects students to do so too. Of course she will tease you if you lie down too long and will certainly haul you up if you let your ‘tailbone stick out’! Faultlessly teaching the main principles of Iyengar’s method – precision, timing and sequencing, Chakravarty may seem like she’s not got her eye on you, but will swiftly turn up to correct your asana, should she see anything wrong. What we found most striking is that she’ll even take the time to stop the class to give one student attention rather than let them carry on incorrectly. We love that she brings the focus back to technique and doesn’t simply patronise.
More of an educational institution than a fitness centre, you will take on yoga as a lifestlye here. “Most of our students have been around since the beginning, moving to this new place with us. As it is a sophisticated and rigorous form of yoga, we like to make sure to not drop the difficulty of the class to a newcomer’s level, rather lift up the capabilities of the student to match the others,” she tells us, adding that it isn’t just about getting to a particular asana but how you get to it. “We want you to be more aware of the body so it is in tune with the mind too. Sometimes though, we use more physical than mental strength. Props too are part of the schedule as wooden gadgets, belts and ropes help the practitioner achieve perfection in any asana,” she says.
Apart from the regular classes for adults, they are hosting a children’s special all this July for those between the ages of eight and 15.
Rs.2,000 per month for full-time students and Rs.2,500 on a month-to-month basis.
At Wheeler Road Extension. Details: 9535048899
— Aakanksha Devi