Rocket Yoga is a fast-paced and Dynamic style of yoga. Here are 14 things you need to know about this newer but much loved form of yoga, which has a slightly different mindset from regular yoga.
1. Rocket yoga was founded in San Fransisco in the 1980s and was first made popular by the yoga community there.
2. Rocket yoga is also known as "The Rocket".
3. Rocket yoga is based on K. Pattabhi Jois' Ashtanga Vinyasa yoga method, combining and restructuring poses from the Primary and Intermediate Ashtanga series and including a few poses from the advanced (3rd and 4th) series.
4. The founder of Rocket yoga, Larry Schultz, was K. Pattabhi Jois' student for 7 years from 1982.
5. As well as founding Rocket Yoga, Larry also founded Power Yoga.
6. Larry Schultz was an insurance salesman before he started doing yoga.
7. Larry, who died of natural causes in February 2011, was dubbed the "The Bad Man of Ashtanga Yoga," by K. Pattabhi Jois because Schultz believed that all students should try all poses, even more advanced ones, which is not how they do it in Mysore.
8. Larry taught yoga to the band, Grateful Dead. The founding member of the band, Bob Weir, came up with the name for Rocket yoga because it apparently "takes you there faster" than the traditional Ashtanga yoga way.
9. Rocket Yoga has a wide celebrity following including actor Willem Dafoe, Madonna, Sting, and model Christy Turlington.
10. Classes are 75 minutes long and consist of 142 poses consisting of Sun Salutations (Suryanamaskara) A and B for warm-up, and then 66 standing and seated poses, ending with the traditional closing series.
11. In Rocket Yoga students are allowed to modify or alter traditional poses which they get stuck on. This allows Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga to be more accessible to those who wouldn't be able to practice the traditional method due to their body structure. They call this the "Art of Modification".
12. The Rocket is divided into Rocket I, Rocket II and Rocket III which each focus on targeted body strength and flexibility:
The Rocket I series is based on the Modified Primary Series and is practiced on Monday and Thursday (instead of the Primary Series).
The Rocket II is based on the Intermediate series of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga and is practiced on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Rocket III (aka "Happy Hour") is a combination of the seated Rocket I and Rocket II and is typically practiced on Friday.
On Sunday Typically, the Ashtanga Vinyasa Primary Series would be practiced and optionally on Thursday. As in the tradition of Ashtanga Yoga, Saturday was the day to rest from physical forms of yoga.
13. Larry and his wife Marie taught 142 teacher training courses, from which, more than 5,000 students graduated, including many now well-known teachers including Duncan Wong, Russell Yamaguchi, Tarik Thami, Marie Russel, Clayton Horton, David Lurey, David Kyle, Rusty Wells, MC Yogi and Amanda Giacomini.
14. For more information on Rocket Yoga and where you can find a class or book a Rocket Yoga Teacher Training, visit their website.
Do you have any knowledge and experience with Rocket Yoga that you would like to share with us? We would love to hear from you.
(Featured image of Larry Schultz via www.astayoga.net)