Madrid is an intense city with a lot of personality, that’s for sure!
So then it’s less of a surprise when your yoga class boasts the same qualities 😉
I’m talking about my Lotus Flow class with Colette Maynard, at Zentro Urban Yoga in Madrid. In most places, Sunday evening yoga classes are to unwind, get a last energy recharge after a maybe eventful weekend, stretch and mentally prepare for the coming week. Most places… but not this one!
This 7pm class in English was nicely booked, not overfilled like my morning class at Yogaconmigo (detailed review to come!). The location of the Zentro studio is fantastic, and true to the name: an urban oasis just by Puerta de Alcalá, surprisingly quiet for restless Madrid.
Colette ensured everyone had space, and saved some by not needing a mat herself (to me, that’s always the sign of a really experienced teacher!). Her only accessory was a harmonium (another great sign) which accompanied us at the start of the class.
She then began by setting the theme for the evening’s practice: the heart chakra, the center of love and devotion. To channel this, we started with a round of chanting Aham prema, a mantra that means “I am divine love“. At this point, I was misled in thinking it would be a nice slow spiritual yoga class… until we truly hit the mat!
Warm-up consisted of mini-flows tackling the shoulders, the hips, activating the lower back and the glutes. As the class progressed, so did the flows increase in complexity. We did a few rounds of “Lotus Flow style” sun salutations, and then series of vinyasas that built on each other, with a few poses topped up on each round. Turns out, the Lotus Flow is not just a pretty name, but a coined style of vinyasa practice developed in New York by Laughing Lotus yoga studio.
The class was really varied: in terms of pace, poses, practitioners in the room. But it had something for everyone: option to skip vinyasas in between flows, brief periods of rest and internalization in between, balance as well as strength poses. To me, the best parts were Colette’s precise guidance, hands-on adjustments and sharp sense of humour. She paced the room throughout the flow practice, and aligned each of us ~20 yogis at least a few times.
After the surge of energy from the vinyasa flows we lowered down to the mat for some wind-down and backbends. On this occasion I found out why backbends are so great: “they’re the only thing that makes us get over ourselves” 🙂
At any rate, each and every one of the poses was practiced in the context of the heart chakra, and movements were slightly adjusted to prevent any closure or blockage in the heart space.
True to the theme, I had to offer my heartfelt thanks to Colette for the brilliant class, a mix of all the elements that make me love yoga! I wasn’t expecting such a warm and receptive feedback from her, along with thoughts on my ongoing teacher training. Speaking of training, I’m hoping to get the chance to practice and train more with Colette, and maybe pick up some of these beautiful sequencing skills along the way…
This yoga class was indeed the cherry on top of a fantastic weekend and last evening in Madrid… and maybe a first intro to something more.
Gracias, yoguis! ♥