Yoga in Switzerland: a beginner's guide

Yoga in Switzerland: a beginner's guide

Comments7 comments

Don't know your asana from your elbow? Here's a short introduction to yoga by Julie Knight, plus a listing of yoga classes and teachers in Switzerland.

To many people, the word yoga conjures up the image of a long-haired, bearded Indian man sitting in the lotus position and chanting. It has been increasingly in the public eye, helped by celebrities such as Madonna, Geri Halliwell and Gwyneth Paltrow singing its praises.

Reported improvements such as toned upper arms, trim stomach and firm thighs and bums have encouraged them to take up yoga, but for the uninitiated and uninformed, what is it all about? Yoga originated in India around 6,000 years ago. The practice sometimes seems to have an air of mystery about it, which perhaps prevents many people from trying a class. It can be seen as new-age, 'alternative' or a bit of a fad in the exercise world. In reality it is a holistic practice that benefits body, mind and spirit.

People take up yoga for a surprisingly wide range of reasons: to gain flexibility, to tone-up or lose weight, to improve their ability to relax or to prepare their body for a physical event such as childbirth. Regular practice of yoga will improve your general fitness and body shape, make you stronger, calmer and more able to cope with the stresses and strains of life. Types of Hatha (or physical) yoga is broken down into eight stages or limbs.

Side twistTraditionally these are followed progressively to reach Samadhi, the last stage, where the spirit is liberated and becomes 'at one' with the universe. Yoga practised in the west mainly encapsulates stages three and four. Stage three (Asana) is the practise of the postures or poses and stage four (Pranayama) is rhythmic control of the breath.

There are many styles of Hatha yoga currently being taught, all of which have slightly different emphases.

 

  • Astanga yoga is the form of yoga currently enjoying the most attention. Also known as power yoga, the moves or transitions between asanas are performed at a higher speed than usual, thus providing an aerobic workout, missing in the alternative yoga forms.
  • Iyengar yoga, based on the teachings of BKS Iyengar from Pune, India, concentrates on the postural alignment of the body and limbs. The practice makes use of ropes, blocks and belts to aid in the attainment of the asanas.
  • Sivananda yoga focuses on the flow of energy in the spine. This style is built around a specific sequence of twelve postures or poses.

What to look for in a yoga class

Yoga includes elements such as stretching, balancing and posturing - the combination of which can seem like a contortionist act to the newcomer. However, a good yoga teacher will tailor the postures to suit the different abilities within a class. Some classes will focus heavily on meditation and visualisation, but for others, meditation simply refers to the period of cool-down or relaxation at the end of the session. Controlled breathing is a hugely important part of the practice.

Yoga is suitable for both men and women and can be enjoyed by the full range of fitness abilities. Even if you have trouble touching your toes, yoga can still be open to you. Classes can be found by looking in the telephone book or by recommendation from friends or work colleagues.

There are numerous teachers in the larger cities and a few are listed below. Try out one or two sessions before committing yourself to a lengthy course, as your relationship with your yoga teacher is one of the most important factors in your enjoyment and progress of yoga.

 

Where to do yoga in Switzerland

Check www.yogafinder.com for more listings of yoga classes by city in Switzerland.

 

GENEVA

Innercityoga
Rue de Rive 3, 1204
Tel: +41 22 310 35 35
Web: www.innercityoga.com        
Style: various     
   
Yoga Teacher  
     
Geneva centre (near Rue de Lyon, close to Gare Cornavin), Geneva
Contact: Alex    
Tel: +41 76 304 55 34
Web: www.yoga-from-a-to-z.com/yoga-in-geneva.html        
Style: Hatha    

cloud9yoga
Contact: Katherine Gubbins       
Tel: +41 79 292 77 45
Web: www.cloud9yoga.ch     
Style: Hatha, Khalsa way prenatal
   
Entre Ciel & Terre - Atelier de Yoga
Route de l'Etraz 1267 Vich, Geneva, Vaud 1267
Contact: Jessica Magnin
Tel: +41 22 364 36 36
Web: www.atelier-yoga.ch   
Style: theme-oriented Vinyasa flow, Hatha   

Au Centre de Soi
ZI de Gingins sur Nyon, Geneva 1276
Contact: Lila Catherine Bruschweiler
Tel: +41 22 369 02 15 or +41 79 458 00 39
Style: Hatha, Kripalu, Yoga therapy, restorative     

Centre de Yoga Sivananda           
1 Rue des Minoteries, Geneva 1205
Tel: +41 22 328 03 28
Web: www.sivananda.org/geneva
Style: Hatha, Sivananda     

Iyengar Yoga      
Les Paquis, Geneva
Contact: Janine Eckermann
Tel: +41 76 583 30 14     
Style: Iyengar                 

Geneva Meditation
Paquis, Geneva
Contact: Slava Dodonu         
Tel: +41 76 517 2325
Web: www.genevameditation.ch
Style: Yoga and meditation, Karma, Nada    

Yoga for your body, heart and mind
Contact: Alexey (Mahadev)       
Tel: +41 76 304 55 34     
Web: www.body-heart-and-mind-yoga.com    
Style: classic Hatha
   
Yogadima
42 Rue de Lyon, Geneva
Contact: Pascale Barbara Ullmann
Tel: +41 22 741 18 03     
Web: www.yogadima.ch    
Style: various

Yogapractice      
Place de la Navigation, Geneva 1201
Contact: Thomas Humpert
Tel: +41 79 305 21 84
Web: www.yogapractice.ch
Style: Iyengar

 

ZURICH

BodyMindSpirit - Health Concepts       
Schweighofstrasse 404, Zurich
Contact: Lucia Nirmala Schmidt
Tel: +41 44 241 91 77
Web: www.chiyoga.com
Style: Chi   

Yogalives GmbH
Giesshuebelstrasse 62b, Zurich 8045
Contact: info@yogalives.ch, Olive Ssembuze
Tel: +41 43 817 24 34
Web: www.yogalives.ch    
Style: Vinyasa, Hatha, deep & slow     

Birthlight GmbH      
Gruengasse 21, Zurich 8004  
Contact: Katia Wharton
Tel: +41 76 392 65 22
Web: www.birthlight.ch
Style: prenatal and postnatal, baby, Hatha        

Yogijeff       
Seefeldstr. 7a, Zurich     
Contact: Jeff Fisher
Tel: +41 79 425 70 32
Web: www.yogijeff.com
Style: Anusara

Agoy-yoga            
Muehlebachstrasse 35, Zurich     
Contact: Nathalie Nobs
Tel: +41 79 356 95 80
Web: www.agoy.ch
Style: Hatha flow     

Airyoga
Oberdorfstrasse 2, Zurich 8001
Contact: zuerich@airyoga.com
Tel: +41 43 499 01 01
Web: www.airyoga.ch
Style: various    

Ashtanga - the spirit of yoga
Zurich 8001
Contact: Jean-Marc Brechbuhler
Tel: +41 79 552 55 10
Web: www.ashtanga.ch        
Style: Ashtanga, Vinyasa

City Yoga School Zurich      
Baeckerstrasse 40, Zurich 8004
Contact: Pius Meier and Carlos Correia de Azevedo
Tel: +41 44 463 42 62
Web: www.yogacity.ch     
Style: Iyengar     

Classical Hatha Yoga       
Postfach 2856, Zurich 8021
Contact: Gregory Kozlovsky
Tel: +41 1 321 66 18
Web: http://hatha-yoga.org
Style: Hatha Yoga, Vishnudevananda, Lonavla Institute    

John Brush Yoga  
Karl Stauffer-Str. 3, Zurich 8008
Contact: John Brush     
Tel: +41 79 235 17 56
Web: www.johnbrush.ch
Style: Ashtanga Vinyasa, Iyengar, Hatha     

Leela Yoga
Apollostrasse 8, Zurich 8032
Contact: André Hartwich   
Tel: +41 43 818 51 31
Web: www.leelayoga.ch
Style: various        

Practical Wellness GmbH      
Shopping-Center 11, Zurich
Contact: Marcel or Sébastien
Tel: +41 56 410 20 91
Web: www.practicalwellness.ch    
Style: Hatha power,  relaxing, meditation and holistic philosophy     

Pure Yoga by Bruno Dietziker  
Seebahnstrasse 257, Zurich 8004
Contact: Bruno Dietziker
Tel: +41 44 291 01 61
Web: www.pureyoga.ch
Style: Ashtanga Vinyasa, B.K.S. Iyengar, Hatha

Shantayoga      
Zentralstrasse 150, Zurich
Contact: Diana Pollastri
Tel: +41 76 574 04 79
Web: www.shantayoga.ch
Style: T. Krishnamacharya, T.K.V. Desikachar         

Yoga Spirit      
Balberstrasse 47, Wollishofen, Zurich 8032  
Langmauerstrasse 7, Quartierhaus Kreis 6, Zurich 8006
Contact: mail@yoga-spirit.ch
Tel: +41 78 607 38 58
Web: www.yoga-spirit.ch    
Style: Hatha, focus on chakras, Kundalini     

Yoga Brahmani            
Buehlstr. 45e, Zurich 8055
Contact: Mirjam Niederoest     
Tel: +41 43 333 00 18
Web: www.yogabrahmani.ch        
Style: Sivananda     

Yoga Studio Anker
Ankerstrasse 9, Zurich 8004
Contact: Barbara Frei
Tel: +41 79 309 03 38
Web: www.yoga-anker.ch    
Style: Ayur, Vinyasa flow     

Yoga Works
Dufourstrasse 71, Zurich
Contact: Bruno Dietziker
Tel: +41 44 291 01 61
Web: www.yoga-works.ch         
Style: Astanga, Iyengar, Hatha          

Yogaflow
Geissbuelstrasse 21, Zurich
Contact: Aquila Camenzind
Tel: +41 79 402 69 63
Web: www.yogaflow.ch
Style: Hatha, Vinyasa     

Yogapoint
Quartiertreff Ruetihof, Hurdaeckerstrasse 6, Zurich 8049
Contact: Silvia Schibli
Tel: +41 78 686 08 15
Web: www.yogapoint.ch
Style: Hatha     

Yogaspace       
Provitreff, Sihlquai 240, Zurich 8000
Contact: info@yogaspace.ch    
Tel: +41 79 636 64 63
Web: www.yogaspace.ch   
Style: Vinyasa

Yoyoga  
Gladbachstrasse 119, Zurich
Contact: Evelyn Willemin
Tel: +41 79 677 99 83
Web: www.yoyoga.ch        
Style: Hatha, dynamic



Readers' recommendations

Lugano:

Centro Yoga Amrita
Via Dott. G. Polar 50, 6932, Switzerland
41 76 385 04 74 ‎
www.yogalugano.ch

Lausanne:

YOGAVAUD
Ashtanga Vinyasa, Hatha, Yoga Therapy, Mum and Baby classes
Central Lausanne 1006 (near the station)
41 21 311 9453
http://yogavaud.tumblr.com

Lausanne, Pully and vicinity:

Private home yoga lessons / therapy: Ashtanga Vinyasa, Hatha, Pranayama (breath).
For both adults and children.
021 711 21 86 / 079 416 13 43

 

 

Expatica

Comment here on the article, or if you have a suggestion to improve this article, please click here.

If you believe any of the information on this page is incorrect or out-of-date, please let us know. Expatica makes every effort to ensure its articles are as comprehensive, accurate and up-to-date as possible, but we're also grateful for any help! (If you want to contact Expatica for any other reason, please follow the instructions on this website's contact page.)


Captcha Note: Characters are case sensitive
The details you provide on this page will not be used to send any unsolicited e-mail, and will not be sold to a third party. Privacy policy .
 
 


7 Comments To This Article

  • Frank posted:

    on 19th August 2014, 23:24:41 - Reply

    Zürich - new arrival
    www.ashtanga-yoga-zurich.com
    Email: ashtangayogazurich.com
    They give 50% of profits to charity, according to their website (true yoga!)
    Style: Ashtanga (by authorised ashtanga teacher, speaks English, German, French)
  • Geneviève posted:

    on 9th July 2014, 10:08:25 - Reply

    I just discovered the most amazing yoga studio in Lucerne. The studio is GORGEOUS and the staff was so nice. They teach a varierty of types of classes and teach both in English and German. They also have a smaller studio in Hergiswil. I haven't been to it yet though. www.livingyoga.ch
  • Yoga La Côte posted:

    on 30th June 2014, 16:46:14 - Reply

    I am the only certified Iyengar Yoga Teacher between Lausanne and Geneva, teaching in French/English/German/Italian. More information on classes on my web-site: www.yoga-lacote.ch.
    Thank you and be wellcome for a trial lesson.
  • Radha Kumar posted:

    on 16th December 2013, 18:28:16 - Reply

    Website:- www.randhiryoga.com
    rue du museè 9, Estavayer-le-lac 1470 Phone:0041 79 258 2424
    Yoga Style: Randhir Yoga

    "Randhir Yoga" The wholesome Yoga,
    Yoga for whole and All, A Center With the blessings, teachings, guidance and a special insight dedicated by Our enlightened Yoga Guru(Master) Randhir Kumar, by whose grace This very place(Randhir Yoga Center) and the style as well, is been blessed to our Town(Estavayer-le-lac),to our very country Switzerland, to whole World
  • Vivianne posted:

    on 1st November 2012, 11:23:21 - Reply

    In Lausanne, Pully and vicinity:
    Specializing in Private Yoga lessons / therapy in the comfort of your own home: Ashtanga Vinyasa, Hatha, Pranayama (breath). For both adults and children.
    021 711 21 86 / 079 416 13 43
  • Donna posted:

    on 7th September 2011, 13:13:37 - Reply

    In Lausanne:

    YOGAVAUD
    Ashtanga Vinyasa, Hatha, Yoga Therapy, Mum and Baby classes
    Central Lausanne 1006 (near the station)
    41 21 311 9453
    http://yogavaud.tumblr.com
  • Anna posted:

    on 23rd August 2011, 12:28:49 - Reply

    In Lugano:
    Centro Yoga Amrita
    Via Dott. G. Polar 50, 6932, Switzerland
    41 76 385 04 74 ‎
    www.yogalugano.ch