A Guide to Yoga in San Cristobal de las casas, Mexico
I’ve only been living in San Cristobal (or San Cris as most foreigners call it) for a couple of weeks, but I came with a need for a refresh in my practice and I’ve been searching with a vengeance.
Part of what I’m working on is reconnecting to my daily practice of puja – morning prayers and singing some kirtan. My practice is always changing slightly but the backbone is the same: Ganesha, my main squeeze is who I pray to in the mornings. Previously, I was lighting my incense and candles, saying a prayer to his picture, then doing a mala, chanting “Om Gan Ganpataye Namaha” 108 times while my infers move over the beads, then I would site for a half hour in silent meditation. Fat chance these days – as I previously wrote, since becoming pregnant, my ability to sit in silent meditation is on par with my ability to do a power yoga class – nil. My new mooring ritual involves the incense and the candle and the prayer, thanking Ganesha for all the lessons and blessings and asking him to remove the obstacles in my path to bliss – help me to be a good mother, to remove my anger, to find self love and keep it; etc. Then I crank the Sivinanda kirtan and sing call and response while I make breakfast. So I have really been getting back into Ganesha lately, we are homies for life, but closer now than ever.
Posada Ganesha: Calle 28 de Agosto No 23 Tel: 678 0212
So I took it as a sign when I stumbled on Posada Ganesha the other day whilst searching for the ever elusive farmer’s market in the west end of town. A “posada” is a step up from a hostel, but cheaper than a hotel and they have a light, homey vibe. They fall somewhere between 21- year old American backpacker and 65 year old retired world traveller. Often there are more Latino travellers at them as well and they are locally owned and operated. Posada Ganesha has a very nice vibe, and they also have daily yoga classes at 9AM Monday-Saturday, Mon, Wed, Fri at 7:30PM and twice a week Tues and Thurs, they offer a talk on Indian philosophy and meditation. It rotates between Ashtanga, Kundalini, and Hatha – frankly, the three pillars of a balanced asana practice in my opinion. Classes are 50 pesos a class and the teachers speak English.
Casa Plena #22 Ave. Diego Dugelay Tel: 678 7072
Casa Plena is a yoga and meditation studio, cafe and centre for alternative courses and massage. What really struck me about this place is that they offer both asana and meditation classes in equal measure. Open Monday – Friday, classes start in the morning at 8:30AM with Hatha yoga, followed by meditation. There is a meditation class at 6PM daily as well. One of the unfortunate downsides to this studio is that there is no schedule online or on their Facebook, you actually need to go by the studio to see what they are offering daily. And the offerings range from Arabian Dance, to Iyengar; Acro Yoga and many different types of mediation – including OSHO’s Dynamic (first time I have ever seen that on a schedule at a studio, ever). Classes are by donation, but when pressed, they recommend 40 pesos which is a steal. This is a real hippy studio and has such a pleasant vibe that the first time I entered, I actually cried a little bit from the gentle love feeling in the air.
Shaktipat Ninos Heros #2 Cenro Interior 3er. piso, Casa Tel: 130 3366
Shaktipat is the most legit studio on this list. It’s 65 Pesos a class, so it’s the most, but they also have classes running from 7:15AM in the morning till 8:15PM at night, five days a week Mon-Fri. Classes run from Kundalini to Hatha, Vinyasa Flow, Prenatal and Integral – they also offer Tai Chi and Pilates.