Forrest Yoga is the creation of Ana Forrest. Forrest yoga is specifically tailored to address the needs of a modern, Western lifestyle and is rooted in the transformative power of yoga. It differs from other types of yoga in that Forrest, herself, is an ordained practitioner of Native American medicine, therefore these ideas of healing are interlaced throughout the philosophy behind the practice.
Forrest Yoga is made of 4 Pillars: Breath, Strength, Integrity and Spirit.
When connection is made to the Breath it creates a sense of aliveness. The idea of Strength in Forrest Yoga is characterized by intense, often vigorous sequences, with poses held for longer lengths of time and through connection to the core. The purpose being to create heat from within to release and remove toxins. In a Forrest Yoga class, you will hear students grunting, moaning, sighing, breathing audibly; whatever it takes to release both physical and emotional trauma. They are taught to move and breathe energy through the body to cleanse emotional or mental blocks in order to connect to their inner power and live life more fully. Students are encouraged to work at their edge in an honest way. Therefore practicing with Integrity. The final Pillar is Spirit. Forrest describes this as, “I want people’s Spirits to reside in their body. I literally want to help people embody their Spirit, not go through life fragmented.”
Ana Forrest developed this style of yoga in order to heal from her own deeply traumatic life events. In the cover photograph from her recently released book Fierce Medicine: Breakthrough Practices to Heal the Body and Ignite the Spirit you get the sense that she has experienced a lot. Her face is deeply lined with the wisdom traced on her like a map following the events of her life. As the title implies from her book, she seems fierce.