When the season transitions from spring to summer, the air gets warmer, scheduling get slower, and our yoga practice often becomes gentler. That’s why Sunday night Movement and Meditation class with Dennis Teston at Brooklyn Yoga Project was on Sleuth’s radar this week—a weekly wind-down must.
Dennis started with a guided meditation, sitting in sukhasana, in a packed room of reflective yogis. He guided us through body, breath and mind awareness, leaving plenty of space for silent self-reflection. “What kinds of thoughts are coming into the mind? And do you believe them?” said Dennis. “Often, the stories are from many years ago, but we still believe them.”
After 15-20 minutes of mindful meditation, we found our way to child’s pose. The class moved slow and gentle, like the first bloom of summer. We took a few deep breaths in child’s pose and then moved into adho mukha svanasana. “Move however the body needs to. Listen to the body, it will tell you what it needs,” Dennis encouraged the class.
Surya namaskar A was next on the agenda. Dennis had a grounded presence and teaching style, with plenty of gentle vibes. Bold, classical music played in the background intensifying the heat and energy of the room as he guided us through a very well-rounded sequence including virabhadrasana two to utthita parsvakonasana to trikonasana.
Once we gained some strength and balance we practiced prep for adho mukha vrksasana, with little hops, leading with the left foot, then right.
“It’s not about getting into handstand. It’s about the limiting thoughts. You’re so much bigger than that,” said Dennis.
With a generous offer to spot my legs swaying mid-air, the support and confidence of Dennis’ assist helped me land steady, beyond my limiting beliefs.
Eventually, we found our way back to the gentleness of child’s pose.
A supine twist was the perfect ending to a slow and pleasant cool down on our backs, followed by forward folding. “Remember the impermanence of what sensations arise in the body. Any limitations today may be gone tomorrow,” Dennis reminded us.
Savasana felt comforting, like the first breeze of warm summer winds, as Dennis led us deeper and deeper into relaxation through a brief guided meditation. “Watch your thoughts and the cycle of adding more content to them,” Dennis shared. “Move your attention to recognizing the divine energy within yourself.”
—Ashley Rose Howard for Yoga Sleuth
Drop-in classes are $20. New students can try 3 classes for $30.