Which yoga style works best for your needs?
Yoga is an ancient practice, which has its roots in India. The essential role of yoga is to create a powerful and meaningful connection between one’s mind and body. Yoga aims to perfectly balance the physical and psychological fundamentals of life to attain enlightenment. It helps in self-discovery and improving the overall wellbeing. Yoga helps pave a new path that directly travels to your inner conscious and does miracles to your body and mind!
Every individual has specific needs and benefits that they wish to receive. You can train and improve any aspect of your life, by choosing the right yoga style. In today’s blog we’ll discuss the basic yoga styles to suit your needs:
- Hatha Yoga:
Hatha Yoga is the most common and ancient form of Yoga which focuses mainly on pose and breath. It includes all the major asanas and pranayamas, which ultimately helps bring body and mind in harmony.
Asanas are the different postures that include twisting, reclining, standing and balancing of the body. These poses are responsible for the physical wellbeing of the body. Asanas improve the body’s flexibility, stretches the muscles and relieves the body of any muscular pains, whereas the pranayamas and meditation help release the stress from one’s mind. Deep breathing exercises help regulate the mind’s equilibrium and destress the mind.
This is the most popular form of yoga and widely followed in western countries. Most yoga classes emphasize on the Hatha Yoga as it’s to train and does not target specific needs but the overall wellbeing.
- Ashtanga Yoga:
This is an advanced form of Yoga, for those who wish to move a step further in ‘power yoga.’ This form requires the individual to follow a series of poses and continuously change from one form to another. Ashtang Yoga requires a basic understanding of the individual poses and is a challenging yet effective way to gain strength and increase flexibility. The acrobatic poses stretch every individual muscle of the body and require intense breathwork.
This is the perfect style of yoga for those who have been into Yoga for a time and would like to move on to the next level. The best and most popular examples of Ashtanga yoga are Surya Namaskar, which includes a total of 12 poses.
- Bikram Yoga:
Created by Bikram Chaudhary, this style of yoga emphasizes on body detox and burning calories through excessive sweating. The forms and poses are similar to the ones in Hatha Yoga. There are special rooms for this style of yoga that are heated to 40 degrees Celsius. The heat helps to loosen the muscles, burn more calories, and flush out the toxins.
- Iyengar Yoga:
If you are a perfectionist, this is the right style of yoga for you. This form of yoga tests both the body and mind until it reaches a point of equilibrium. Iyengar Yoga comprises of poses with strict posture, symmetry, alignment of the body and holding them for as long as you can!
This form focuses on the proper alignment of the skeleton and muscles. Props, balls, blocks, and walls are also used to balance the body. This form of yoga requires good breathwork, to hold the poses for a longer time. The results include a calm mind, increased flexibility, pain relief, and improved posture.
- Ananda Yoga:
As the name suggests, Ananda Yoga aims at providing Ananda or Happiness. This style of yoga emphasizes more on the pranayama while shifting from one pose to another, slowly and gently. Often the poses are held for a long time and controlled breathing is encouraged to release stress form the mind and the body. This form of yoga is for those who are looking for enlightenment and deep composure.
- Kundalini Yoga:
This form of yoga focuses on balancing the energies of the body through meditation and mantras. There are a series of poses that are followed accompanied by pranayama and chanting mantras. The poses tend to move the energies from the bottom of your spine to the seven chakras which revive our soul. It is also believed that this form of yoga brings out hidden sexual energies.
- Vinyasa Yoga:
This is a cardiovascular form of Yoga for beginners, which is very popular in the US. This is a fast form of Yoga with quick transitions of poses and pranayama. The unique thing about Vinyasa yoga is that the poses are ever-changing and is a rhythmic workout.
Also called ‘flow yoga’ it looks like the individual is almost flowing like water from one pose to another. There are no set rules in this form. It heats the body, reducing fat and increases flexibility.
No matter what style of yoga you choose, you’ll see the benefits eventually. If you don’t know what you’re aiming at, just start with some basic asanas and you’ll see the difference in your body and mind soon.
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