Martina is a dedicated practioner of Ashtanga Yoga since 20 years and in the recent years she has been practicing under the teaching of Manju Pattabhi Jois. She is grateful for the opportunity to be a student of Manju Jois, who is the oldest son of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois and therefore a direct connection to the source of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga. She has completed the Primary and the Intermediate Ashtanga Series Teacher Training with Manju P. Jois.
Martina was introduced and inspired by her first teachers Derek Ireland and Radha Warrell, who where responsible to spread Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga to Europe. She gives credit and thanks to them, she will never forget Derek the inspiring hands-on teacher, who died in 1998.
On her yoga path she studied with respected Ashtanga teachers, such Kino McGregor (Teacher Training), David Swenson, Tarik van Prehm and Tomás Zorzo in retreats and workshops. She maintains a daily home practice and continues to study with teachers of Ashtanga and other Yoga lineages to deepen her knowledge.
Martina has been teaching Yoga since 2005 in her studio in Tábua, Portugal and at Quinta Bamboo and has co-founded and organized the Academia de Artes Marciais e Yoga, DOYO for 10 years. She has 20 years of experience as a teaching Taekwon-Do master ( III Dan) and is formed in Shiatsu (acupressure massage) which supports the teaching.
Martina’s yoga lessons are designed so that each participant can develop an individual practice according to their own potential. She works with students of all levels and creates a personal yoga program, modifying and softening the practice accordingly, to help students to find their own strength and inner light.
Yoga has its origins in India, its roots lead back over 3000 years. As a practiced philosophy, it has existed for several thousand years and influenced the philosophical, religious and cultural development of India.
Yoga as a path to holistic health explores the harmonization of body, mind and spirituality. The word yoga also means “to unite”, “to join”.
The Yoga Sūtras of the sage Patañjali serve as the basis for the different forms of yoga. He defined the eight-fold path, (astau – eight, anga – limb) over 2000 years ago, from which many yoga practice styles have been developed.
Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga is a method that combines especially the 4 middle limbs of the eight-fold path by performing the poses together with the breath in a flowing, dynamic system (Vinyasa) .
Ashtanga Yoga is designed to help the practioner rediscover the harmony between the physical aspect (posture/ Asana), the energetic aspect (breath control / Pranayama), the emotional aspect (sense with drawal, internal focus/ Pratyahara),
and the mental aspect (concentration/ Dharana) of human consciousness.
The first two externally oriented limbs (Yama, set of ethics and Niyama, observances) require the practical application in daily life, the last two internally oriented limbs (Dhyana, meditation, Samadhi, contemplation, enlightenment ) come into being over time with a regular practice.
The tradition of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga goes back to Sri Tirumalai Krishnamacharya(1888 – 1989) who is regarded as the founder of modern Yoga.
In Tibet he practiced yoga for more than 7 years with his master Yogeshwara Ramamohana Brahmachari. In these years he learned dynamic exercise sequences, as an extension to the mostly static practice performance in India. On his return to India, he lived from 1927 in Mysore, where he transmitted as an indian yogateacher and an ayurvedic healer the dynamic exercise system that we know today as the Ashtanga Yoga.
Sri Krishna Pattabhi Jois was born in 1915 in South India, came together with Sri T. Krishnamacharya when he was a young boy, and from 1927 he was his student for more than 20 years.Pattabhi Jois taught almost until his death (in 2009) the system of Ashtanga Yoga in his Yoga Shala in Mysore, and continued the tradition. His son, Manju P.Jois and western students helped to make the system widespread in the west.Today, Pattabhis grandson Sharat continues teaching in the way of the ancient tradition in Mysore, India. Pattabhis son Manju, living in California, USA, taught the true Mysore Ashtanga method worlwide.
The Vinyasasystem combines postures (asanas) in a flowing, harmonious sequence. Synchronizing special breathing technique (ujjayi) and movement (vinyasa) create a warming flow in the body, physical and emotional blockages can be solved.The circulation is stimulated, the body gets detoxified, strengthened, flexible and relaxed.
The visible, in the West, probably the best known aspect of yoga practice, are the body positions. They create a harmony in the physical body.
In the practice system of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga, a large number of postures are built in 6 progressive series of postures.
The practice begins with the sun salutations, and ends with a relaxation session, which brings the body and mind to rest.
The dynamic of Yoga occurs when breath and movement come together.
The sequence of postures is designed in a particular order to form a continuous flow which will create a balance between strength and flexibility for the practitioner. The practice produces a deep internal heat, purifying sweat that detoxifies one’s body, improving blood circulation, lightness, strength, mental clarity and tranquility. By practicing a meditation in movement it reveals that all forms of being are impermanent.
The soundful breath carries the body to a stream of energy from one posture to the next.
Listening to your own breath helps you to draw the attention inward.
Bandhas are internal locks that give the energy constrained and properly channeled. By using locks in the body the subtle energy (Prana)can be directed through the energetic body. Subtle muscle contractions, the physical impact of bandhas, form the basis for the alignment of the body in various positions.
A fixed point of view while keeping individual asanas directs the concentration inside, encourages the sense of balance, mindfulness and serenity. The proper use of drishtis help the practitioner to become deeply internal and meditative.