There is a vast amount of information regarding yoga available, so much that it can become confusing knowing where to start – so let’s turn the focus on you. What are you seeking from your yoga practice? What is your mood? What are you lacking or what do you have an abundance of?

There is also the false notion that you have to commit to one style when in reality, you could probably benefit from incorporating more than one varying yoga type into your weekly or monthly routine.

Each branch of yoga offers unique advantages to the body, the mind, and the spirit.

Hatha Yoga

Hatha yoga can be confusing as people have begun to associate it with a gentle form of yoga that is most suitable for beginners or those who need an easier practice. While some yoga studios may take this approach, it is not necessarily the roots of Hatha.

Hatha is a term that actually covers different forms of yoga, including Ashtanga and Vinyasa, and is not necessarily easy just because it's practiced at a slower pace. While Hatha overall represents the connection between asanas and the breath, most people will say Hatha as a way to describe a yoga sequence that focuses on holding poses for much longer and without any necessary movement between one and the next.

The benefits of Hatha will probably vary from studio and class, but it's likely that when following a Hatha routine you will receive a deeper stretch and work the muscles by building stamina.

If you prefer a slower-paced class with elements of a workout, Hatha could be a great choice.

Vinyasa Yoga

You may have already heard of "Vinyasa flow" as it's an incredibly popular form of yoga, especially among Western practitioners. Vinyasa evokes energy and movement as the body moves seamlessly through each yoga pose through the connection of the breath.

Lifting the body is typically associated with exhalation, which is easy to remember when you visualize taking in positive energy from the universe to help give the body energy to move. You will usually exhale when contracting the core or bending the body. There is not a standard set of poses in any Vinyasa cycle – it is constantly changing.

Vinyasa is probably one of the most flexible styles of yoga out there, which is probably why it's so popular. If you're looking for a physical workout and to practice breath-and-body connection, Vinyasa is an excellent choice, even for absolute beginners.

Classes will usually be divided by beginner, intermediate, and advanced. 

In a world of chaos, Ashtanga is a type of yoga that provides structure to the practice. The same poses will be continuously repeated, which is advantageous in that it allows you to perfect each yoga pose through constant practice.

The poses may have slight variations to increase or decrease the challenge of the sequence. Ashtanga brings to mind the kind of people who wish to engage for thousands of hours to master their subject. If you decide as a yogi to practice Ashtanga, you will have the beautiful opportunity of knowing your body in a way you may have never known before.

Each asana will become one of grace as you begin to recognize your breath, the feelings each posture brings up, and the tranquility of routinely-set yoga poses.

Ashtanga can provide a physical workout similar to Vinyasa where the entire body is receiving a rigorous workout while increasing flexibility and strength. If you don't want to think about what to do next, Ashtanga can lead the way.

Bikram/Hot Yoga

Bikram and Hot yoga are mostly similar, except Bikram, like Ashtanga, uses the same stream of yoga poses while hot yoga is more relax in using random poses that may change from practice to practice. Both forms of yoga are practiced in a room that is heated between thirty and forty degrees Celsius, which could help you sweat out any negativity trapped within your body in the form of harmful toxins.

Hot and Bikram yoga are said to improve circulation, but most forms of yoga, especially ones that rely on continuous movement, tend to do that. What is unique about these yoga types is that the element of heat helps you find a deeper stretch in the muscle tissues. You can think of the warmth of the room making the body more malleable. Because of the intense heat, the poses are usually held for longer but conducted at a slower, calmer pace.

Hot yoga can be incredibly relaxing as it ignites feelings of the warm sun on your skin or a caring embrace.

Hot or Bikram yoga are excellent choices if you wish to drastically increase your flexibility and are impartial to building muscle. 

Yin Yoga

Yin yoga: if the sun is Vinyasa or Ashtanga, then Yin yoga is the moon we rest beneath.

This type of yoga is a gentle practice that welcomes all. The focus of Yin yoga is to stay in a held asana for a longer period of time which targets the deeper muscle tissues within the body.

As the practice goes on you may find yourself drifting off into a meditative state. There is no such thing as too many props in Yin yoga. Pillows, blankets, bolsters, and blocks are all used to help support the body in the longer-held positions.

Usually done in dim lighting or even the dark, Yin yoga is as relaxing as can be and probably the perfect style to welcome meditation and mindfulness into your life while connecting your beautiful, loving body.

0 0 votes
Article Rating