Understanding the different types of Yoga

Yoga is becoming a more and more popular activity in the Western world today. The number of places holding Yoga classes is on the increase and there is a plethora of different types of Yoga. With a choice of Hatha Yoga, Ashtanga Yoga, Power Yoga, Iyengar Yoga, Bikram Yoga, Vinyasa Yoga and many more it can be easy to get confused

The article will help you to understand the difference between the most popular types of Yoga so you can choose which type is right for you.

Remember, there’s no rule that says you have to stick to one type of Yoga. I like Ashtanga Yoga best, but I also go to occasional Iyengar and Hatha Yoga classes for a bit of variety.

List of Most Types of Yoga ( by Types of Exercices and Goals)

There are different forms of yoga. This type of exercise can leave you toned and supple or you may even be spiritually enlightened according to some teachers. Yoga is the latest thing. It has reshaped some of the greatest stars all the way from Madonna to Sting.

Some forms of yoga are more physical and some are highly spiritual. Yoga is extremely good for fatigue, depression, arthritis, aging, stress-related illness, migraine, PMS, back pain and mobility problems.

You must first decide why you wish to start yoga and then go about choosing the appropriate form for you. The principles of yoga are quite simple – relax, tune out everything and stretch and you will feel better.

Hatha yoga

Hatha Yoga in Sanskrit (an ancient classical language of India) Ha means sun and tha means the moon. This type of Yoga is relatively slow-paced, gentle type of Yoga and is a good place to start if you are completely new to Yoga and don’t know any of the asanas (poses). Like all types of Yoga, Hatha Yoga aims to unite the mind, body and spirit.

This type of yoga is based on controlled stretching. An emphasis is placed on developing a flexible spine. This type of yoga is excellent for all levels of fitness.

Read more on Hatha Yoga on Wikipedia

Vini Yoga

Vinyasa Yoga Vinyasa means breath synchronized movement and is another fast paced type of Yoga, with an emphasis on breathing. A practice typically starts with sun salutations and moves on to more intense stretching. Throughout the practice each pose is balanced with a counter pose.

This type of yoga is gentle and safe and is very good for older people. It is taught by a teacher called a Desikachar and is usually taught on an individual basis.

If you really want to get physical then you should choose these types of yoga:

Lyenger yoga

This type of yoga focuses on correct postures. It often makes use of ropes and blocks to maintain these postures.

Sivananda yoga

This type of yoga is suitable for every age and covers a wide range of poses which range from simple to complex.

Ashtanga yoga This type of yoga is known as power yoga. It is very demanding and is only suitable for those people who are very fit.

For those of you who want to get spiritual, then you would want to choose from these types of yoga:

Raja yoga

This is often referred to as royal yoga. It is concerned with the mind.

Dru yoga

This is group yoga which concentrates very heavily on breath work.

Jnana yoga

This concentrates on the philosophical aspects of yoga and is very spiritual and meditative.

Iyengar Yoga

Iyengar Yoga This type of Yoga is based on teachings by B.K.S Igengar and concentrates on the correct alignment and form of the body.

Unlike Ashtanga Yoga, there is an emphasis on holding each pose for a long period of time rather than moving constantly from one pose to the next. Iyengar Yoga uses props such as blocks and straps to help align the body into the different poses.

Bikram Yoga

Bikram Yoga otherwise known as Hot Yoga, is practiced in a room heated to 105 degrees, with a humidity of around 40%. Generally a sequence of 26 different poses is practiced during a Bikram Yoga class and the hot temperature helps to loosen muscles.

Due to the high temperature most people sweat a lot during the class and this helps to cleanse the body of toxins.

Power Yoga

Power Yoga this is a western interpretation of Yoga and is based on Ashtanga Yoga.

A Power Yoga class may not necessarily stick to the exact sequence of poses like Ashtanga Yoga does, but it does involve practicing a series of poses without stopping and starting.

Ashtanga Yoga

Ashtanga Yoga this is the type of Yoga means eight limbs in Sanskrit. It’s a fast-moving, intense style of Yoga practice and is based on a progressive set sequence of asanas, synchronized with the breath.

Ashtanga Yoga can be quite physically demanding as you constantly move from one asana in the sequence to the next, so you’ll find that it will improve your stamina as well as your flexibility and strength.

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