The word yoga originates from the Sanskrit language (ancient Indian) and means unification. Yoga is a spiritual discipline which, through philosophy and its practices, promotes quality in human life, what the ancient Greeks called “Wellbeing”.
Systematic exercise in yoga provides the understanding that the body, mind and spirit are inseparable and that there is an interaction between them.
So the mental and physical health (healthy mind in a healthy body) gives the practitioner the opportunity to have a personal experience that leads to the experience of who they really are, what has been named as “know thyself”.
Everyone should be practicing yoga in a holistic manner to meet the needs of the body and mind. Through the practice on the techniques of Hatha yoga (asana, pranayama, mudra, bandha) a number of benefits is achieved, such as, increased flexibility and vitality, harmonious functioning of systems (endocrine, nervous, circulatory, lymphatic, etc.), elimination of toxins, balancing the two hemispheres of the brain, neuromuscular coordination, etc.
Raja yoga is the branch that includes internal observation techniques, meditation and relaxation and introduces the practitioner to the cultivation of internal qualities (yamas – niyamas). Exercise in Raja yoga purifies the mind and cultivates inner equanimity. It helps in the recognition and utilization of human resources in order to address and meet the personal needs and objectives.
Each of us can be practiced in yoga, regardless of age, gender and culture. From toddlers to seniors, everyone can seek and find the source of joy and peace within themselves that is independent of external circumstances and conditions.
“The soul that moves through the world of senses and yet keeps the senses in harmony … finds rest in peace.”
Theodoros Chiots was born and raised in Athens. In 1995 he started practicing and studying the yoga system of Satyananda yoga under the guidance of Swami Sivamurti Saraswati.
In 2000 he attended and successfully completed the undergraduate program “Studies in Yoga 1” and the “Training Workshop Yoga” in Satyanandashram Greece. He continues his education attending specialized courses in many fields of yoga with renowned teachers such as Swami Sivamurti Saraswati, Swami Vedanta Saraswati, Jean Claude Garnier, Diane Long, etc.
Teaching since 2001, he has guided seminars for students and teachers of yoga and continues training and deepening his knowledge in yoga under the guidance of his teachers. Since 1998, he composes and sings kirtan. Kirtan belongs to the field of sound yoga (nada yoga) and yoga of the heart (bhakti yoga) and it is an effective tool of expression and association “Ourself”. He has participated in many conferences and festivals of yoga and at every given opportunity he shares this transcendent experience to people.
Alexandra Sotiropoulou was born and raised in Athens. In 1996 she began practicing yoga in the Ashtanga Vinyasa yoga system with her first teachers Derek Ireland and Christina Karytinou at Practice Place in southern Crete. She has completed two courses in Ashtanga Vinyasa yoga, with Christina Karytinou in Athens (2003) and David Swenson in Scotland (2005).
In 1999 she found Satyananda yoga and in 2002 successfully attended the undergraduate program “Studies in Yoga 1” and the “Rapporteur Training Program” (2007) in Satyanandashram Greece.
At the same time, she has attended numerous yoga classes, seminars and workshops with distinguished teachers such as Swami Sivamurti Saraswati, Jean Claude Garnier, Michael Stone, Mark Darby, Bhavani Maki, Dominic Corigliano and others.
Sometime around 2003, she read Vanda Scaravelli’s book, “Awakening the Spine”. She was pleasantly surprised by the poetic but very clear way the author explained the method of yoga. Then she realized that what she was reading was extremely important and unique. So in search of a teacher who taught in this way, in 2008 she invited Diane Long for a seminar in Athens. Diane Long was a student of Vanda Scaravelli for 23 years and teaches in Europe, America and Asia.
Alexandra invites Diane Long on an annual basis, who also prompted her to carry on this way of practicing yoga. Alexandra realized a new dimension in the yogasana where, as Vanda Scaravelli very wisely pointed out, body instinct is not sacrificed to achieve any asana and where every movement gives freedom and liveliness to the spine.
Yoga is a process of widening awareness and inner space where each of us flourishes at his own time.
In this way she understands and transfers yoga herself.
Alexandra has been teaching since 2003 and is certified by the international organization YOGA ALLIANCE INTERNATIONAL
(Master level training – 500 hours).