New Student Advice

We have students of all ages and all walks of life and we strive to make the Shala a safe, nurturing and positive space for everyone who visits. We are a small independent centre, owned, run and staffed by yogis, and one of our priorities has always been to make the Shala a personal, rather than an anonymous, experience. Our class numbers are small relative to many centres, and there is a genuine sense of community that has always blossomed in our space.

Registration & Booking

Visit the Centre

We welcome new students to stop by and see our space, have a chat and get advice about our classes, workshops and therapies. It is best to come when classes are not in progress; either 15 minutes before a class or during the week days when we are often at the centre catching up on admin (below right). Please buzz the intercom and come up if you are passing or ring before visiting to check someone is at the centre. Alternatively if you would like to get some advice by email or phone please get in touch. 

Booking Classes

We request that all classes are booked and paid for before you come for a class. Our website is fully responsive so you can easily book from your mobile phone – even on your way to the studio! We prefer not to have drop in visitors because we require a complete list of everyone coming in to the building for health and safety reasons. If you are having issues with our booking system please let us know and we can book a class for you. Our front of house area functions more as a hang-out lounge area than a formal reception with most administrative matters being dealt with online or by email.

Note that our teachers do their best to accommodate various abilities within their classes but as a rule on your first visit it is better to try an easier level if you are uncertain as to which class to try. Alternatively please contact us for advice on which class is most suitable.

Account Queries

If you have an account query, please log in to your Shala account where you can track your schedule, visit history, purchases and account details. If you are unable to resolve it online, please email us.

Waiting List

We have a waiting list for up to three people per class; classes can get fully booked but it is unusual for someone not to get a place in the class they would like. If a class is full, add your name to the wait list and an email will be sent to you if a space comes free; if you are then unable to attend, email us and we will cancel your booking (our 6-hour cancellation policy does not apply to the wait list).


Please note our cancellation window is 6 hours for classes and 24 hours for workshops. While we do fully appreciate that late cancellations often happen for reasons beyond your control – illness, weather, public transport, family or other valid reasons – it is impossible for us to administrate and arbitrate late cancellations so all late cancellations are automatically charged without exception – thank you for understanding. If you have missed the cancellation deadline, please still “late cancel” so that the teacher knows not to expect you. Note that we do not accept cancellations by phone or email.

Arriving at the Shala

Front of the Shala
Finding the Centre

The front of our building is marked by our vibrant pink and orange banners on Norwood Road (left), but our entrance is round the corner at 1 Chestnut Road (right) – look for the door on the far left-hand-side of the Harry Day Mews building with our orange street signs. Our intercom is to the right of the door – buzz to gain access and come up to the third (top) floor. Please note that unfortunately there is no lift in the building so if you have any mobility issues please ring us to discuss. The centre opens for classes 15 minutes before scheduled classes (ie 6.15pm in the evenings). 

For a location map and information on transport, including free parking and cycle bays please see our contact page.

Entrance to the Shala
Signing in to Class on Arrival

When you arrive, please check in at the iPad on the front desk by ticking the box next to your name on the class sign in screen. If it is your first visit, please tell a member of staff so that we can show you around and help you if you need to know anything. Note that we do not have a full-time receptionist at the centre so a teacher will often be the person to let you in and assist with signing in.

Late Arrivals

If you are more than 5 minutes late for class, please do not disturb the class by buzzing the intercom. It's very disruptive for teachers and students to have late comers in class.

General Class Advice

General Advice

  • avoid strong caffeine and heavy food at least 2 hours before a yoga class
  • make sure you are well hydrated 
  • wear yoga/sports clothing and bring a small towel if you sweat 
  • bring your own yoga mat; if you don't have a mat please see below for more on borrowing a studio mat
  • rest from yoga is recommended for women in the heaviest days of their menstrual cycle; if you do wish to practice, you should avoid inverted postures (shoulderstand, headstand etc) 
  • serious medical conditions or injuries should be discussed with us before booking 
  • minor medical condition or injuries should be discussed with your teacher before the class, please come 10 minutes early to your first class 
  • please leave large bags in the changing rooms but take valuables in to the studio with you; the Shala does not accept liability for theft or damage to personal possessions at the centre

Studio Etiquette

To help ensure everyone has the best experience possible at the Shala please honor the following guidelines:

  • arrive 5-15 minutes before your class; it can be disruptive to classes in progress to have students arriving (late or too early) whilst classes are in progress 
  • register, book and pay for your classes online
  • mute mobile phones and refrain from using them while in the studio 
  • remove shoes on arrival and place in the shoe rack
  • leave belongings in the changing areas and take valuables only to the studio
  • be clean of body and perfumes when practicing 
  • be as quiet as possible on arriving, waiting for class and leaving to avoid disrupting classes

New Student Offer

The majority of new students at the Shala start with our introductory offer, which allows you access to all our regular classes in your first month for just £45 (*note that this pass allows one visit per day). We encourage you to try a number of classes and find the class(es) and the teacher(s) that suits you best. It is also a good way to establish a regular practice and feel the amazing benefits of yoga and Pilates in a short space of time. Included in this offer is the option to benefit from a half price massage or therapy. 

Alternatively if you plan to come less than 4 times in your first month you can choose a single, 5 or 10-class pass. All pricing options can be viewed from our schedule/price page. All purchases including new student passes, memberships, therapies and workshop sessions are non-refundable and series expiration dates are firm.

Choosing a Class

Our yoga classes range from beginners classes (Level 1) through to intermediate (Level 2), more advanced classes (Level 3) and Mysore-style classes. Our teachers do their best to accommodate various abilities within their classes but we generally recommend trying out a Level 1 class first unless you have an established yoga practice. Most of the classes are dynamic, flowing classes which embrace a range of yoga styles from ashtanga to vinyasa flow and dharma yoga, depending on the teacher. Each teacher brings their own individual style to the classes they teach so if you would like to know more about the style of a specific class, please look at the teacher's individual biography.

To compliment the stronger more dynamic classes we offer Deep Release classes (left) and Yin Yoga workshops which are based on slower yin and restorative practices. 

Our Pilates classes are ideal for injury and post-natal rehabilitation as well as overall body conditioning – these range from a monthly Pilates Essentials Workshop to regular Level 1 and more advanced Level 2 classes.



Offering holistic treatments at the Shala is integral to our vision for the centre as a safe place of nurture and healing. We have an exceptional team of therapists offering a range of massage therapies and alternative treatments from our purpose-built therapy room. Students on our new student offer are entitled to one half price treatment during their first month at the centre. Take your pick from Swedish MassageThai Massage (right)Shiatsu MassagePre-Post Natal MassageThermal Stone MassageSports and Remedial MassageVisceral & Neural Manipulation and Acupuncture – bookings are made direct with the individual therapists.



  • Reception/lounge area
  • Mysore studio (right) – largest studio (capacity 25)
  • Hampi studio – medium studio (capacity 18)
  • Pushkar studio – small studio (capacity 14)
  • Womens changing room
  • Mens changing room
  • Toilets x 3
  • Showers x 2

Drinks are available to purchase in the reception area: 

  •  Water £1 
  • Coconut Water £2 
  • Tea £1.50 
  • Coffee £2 

Help yourself to cold drinks and tea and leave the money in the honesty jar. If you would like a coffee, please ask a member of staff (or a barista-trained student!) to make it for you.

Yoga Mats

It is common for people to sweat in our yoga classes and so for hygiene reasons, we request that you bring your own mat or yoga towel. Studio mats are available to borrow ONLY if you have a yoga towel to put over it. The only exception to this rule is for new students on an introductory pass, who may borrow a mat during their first month. If you do borrow a studio mat, please clean it after use (there are sprays in red bottles and wipes to do this) and leave on a radiator to dry.

We have lightweight yoga mats (£22) and yoga towels (£25) for sale; if you wish to purchase one just ask a member of staff. 

Yoga Mat Storage

Members have permission to store their mats in the shelves in the Mysore room. Please name your mat and log it in the mat storage list. We have limited space and this space is reserved for members only. Any mats that are left unused at the studio for a period of time will be recycled or thrown away.