A union of the strenuous physical aspects and strict posturing of Ashtanga, with the more loosely defined creative flow of Vinyasa. Fusion flow classes are adapted to suit concepts and themes which often weave through several weeks, allowing individuals the time and space necessary for reflection and growth within the thematic context.
It's a sweaty, demanding and deeply cleansing style of yoga, highly adaptable to suit the needs of individuals or the group. Being a contemporary adaptation, you can expect an eclectic, modern, beat-laden playlist and themes that deal with the stresses and strains of modern life.
The term 'Vinyasa' describes a variety of yoga disciplines. Depending on who you ask, the direct translation from Sanskrit is either 'to place in a special way' or 'movement and position of limbs'. Being a polysemous language, both (and more) are true. In the context of yoga, Vinyasa refers to the synchronisation of body movement with breathing in meditative flow, and accompanies more strenuous, dynamic forms of yoga.
The particular emphasis on rhythm, flow and repetition inspires an intense, contemplative focus, and the attention to breath synchronisation promotes external bonds and internal calm.
Ashtanga is an intensely physical, dynamic style of yoga, aiming to achieve mental and physical purification through its eight 'limbs'. These are:
Yama - moral codes
Niyama - self study
Asana - posture
Pranayama - breath control
Pratyahara - sense control
Dharana - concentration
Dhyana - meditation
Samadhi - absorption
An underlying principal of Asthanga states that, in order to achieve the control over the introspective, one must first gain control of the exterior - the physical. Here, we're talking about posture, breath and sense control - in simple terms, the regular practice of strictly defined sequences of asanas (postures).
In Ashtanga yoga, proper asana can only be practiced effectively if accompanied by vinyasa (control of breathing and moevement), and tristhana. Tristhana requires quiet attention to breathing, posture and the direction of gaze to one of nine visual focus points. In plain English, this means that Ashtanga demands the development of substantial core strength, flexibility and stability, in order to control physicality, alongside a meditative awareness of breath, posture and focus. Total mind and body control.
In accomplishing the above, an individual establishes a sturdy physical and psychological base from which they can explore and develop the remaining 'limbs' which, in contemporaray terms, encompass morality, self-awareness, mindfulness, focus, calm and contentment.