This ancient discipline is one of the best comprehensive care systems that exist.
In yoga, body, mind and spirit are strengthened and calm with the practice of asanas, breathing and meditation.
More than a practice, yoga is a way of life that heals, cares and strengthens the body, mind and spirit through the practice of asanas, breathing and meditation.
Practiced in India for thousands of years, it has become one of the systems of physical and spiritual conditioning with more followers in our days.
Hinduism is one of the most complex cultures in the world. Yoga is part of its religious, spiritual, cultural and social tradition. There are texts from thousands of years ago that already talk about practices of meditation, breathing, transcendence of the self and a series of postures that help the yogi to purify his body: the asanas.
There are over a hundred types of yoga. In the West different styles are known and practiced that derive from Hatha Yoga, one of the most dynamic. There are more spiritual, such as Yoga Kundalini, or more physical and demanding, such as Bikram Yoga, which is practiced in a warm room (at normal temperature in India). There is even a facial yoga to relax and tone the muscles of the face. (Explained later)
What is yoga?
During a yoga session, which usually lasts between one hour and an hour and a half, different asanas or postures are practiced harmonized with breathing, beneficial for both body and mind. The asanas have different degrees of difficulty, from the simplest ones for beginners, to the more extreme ones practiced by advanced students.
Most classes usually begin with “Greetings to the Sun”, which comprises a dynamic sequence of positions that start upright and make us come down to the floor to warm and lubricate muscles and joints. All this combined with breathing, which helps us to generate body heat and energy.
After warming up, you begin with the asanas or static positions, always performing a posture and its counterposition to work the body and musculature in a balanced way. If the class is dynamic, as in the case of Yoga Flow, Power, Dynamic or Asthanga, the asanas will be made in movement, in a fluid way.
All yoga classes end with a relaxation of about 10 or 15 minutes in which it is returned to the body and the mind to calm. Depending on the style of yoga or the teacher, you can also do a final meditation.
Yoga can be practiced in a specialized center or sports club or, once you have learned the correct technique and asanas, follow a personal practice (sadana), which allows us to exercise and calm our mind wherever we are.
The practice of yoga in any of its modalities produces a great change, not only physical, in those who practice it, because it provides control, balance and inner peace. Asanas lubricate the organs, improve blood circulation and muscle flexibility, and help the joints, muscles and other parts of the body to function properly.
Asanas not only exercise muscles, strength, endurance and balance, but also massage the internal organs, activate the metabolism (practicing yoga usually burn many calories, especially at rest), oxygenate the body and improve bowel functioning . This is the case of inverted postures, which renew the blood flow, rejuvenating the organism from within.
Doing yoga routinely provides energy and improves health, strengthens and stretches the muscles of the whole body, correcting postural problems and preventing back and joint pathologies.
Practicing yoga will not only change our body, but our energy, it will help us to be more aware of ourselves, to discover many things that have to do with our soul, to take care of our body in a healthy way, to acquire calm and serenity.
Yoga is especially recommended for those looking for a fitness system that not only trains your body but allows you to work the mind. Thus, it is perfect for those who suffer stress, anxiety and have problems of sleep or depression;
And for those who want to develop their spiritual part and change their habits of life.
Most Common Types of Yoga
- Yoga Kundalini uses Hatha’s asanas but usually associates them in kriyas or sets of postures with a goal: to improve renal functions, to open the heart, to improve the respiratory capacity, to activate the lymphatic system, to work the pelvic floor, to release emotions. The class interweaves chants and mantras and all physical practice is directed towards a final meditation. Practitioners of Kundalini argue that this style of yoga awakens precisely the kundalini, the energy that we all have asleep Going at the base of the body. Represented as a snake, when it wakes up through the body to reach the head. This style is highly recommended for those who want to explore and unlock their emotions, and for those who want to start meditation.
- Yoga Iyengar, created by the master of the same name, is the most technical and perfectionist of all. Based on Hatha’s positions but without any systematization, he uses belts, blocks, chairs, blankets and other tools to correct postures and improve the practice. A very interesting discipline for those who want to practice yoga safely and acquire a good technical base.
Ashtanga Bhatki Yoga is the most intense and dynamic of all styles, only suitable for practitioners with good physical qualities. In this style, the same greetings to the sun and positions are made as in Hatha, but introducing jumps, balances, postures and sequences of an athlete. This style is most appropriate for those who want to train hard and need strong sensations when exercising or want to burn calories.
- Hatha Bikram Yoga is one of the most original types of Yoga. This style follows the Hatha Yoga series but in a room about 40 degrees, more or less the temperature of India. The heat causes the muscles to stretch much deeper and the body eliminates many toxins, as it is constantly sweating. To practice it you have to wear light clothes and a big bottle of water.
- It is easy to find many other styles of Yoga (Flow, Integral, Nauli, AcroYoga …), especially in Califormia, the place with more dumb yoga practitioners (as we understand it in the West)
What do you need to get started?
If you are ready and ready to start in yoga practice, here are some tips to get the most out of it:
- Look for a specialized center, with professors certified in the style they teach, especially if you have any pathology of back or other type.
- Try several styles before deciding for one, you could say that there is a style for each type of person.
- Be patient, permanent physical changes in yoga take time and you have to start very smoothly, always making the simple choices that the teacher indicates.
- Otherwise we run the risk of injuring ourselves.
- Wear light colored clothes, breathable and very comfortable to do the classes.
- Always wear a sweatshirt and socks to shelter you during relaxation and a bottle of water in case you are thirsty during class.
- Drink water and fluids before, during (if you need to) and after class, but try not to eat at least two hours before a session.
- Leave the mobile out of class, take the yoga class as your moment to disconnect from the world.
There is no better way to honor us than through our sadhana, our spiritual practice – gathered in sangt, in community –
to manifest the One in each, through every action, every word, and every breath.
I will share you a quick tiny video with my amazing Yoga Teacher: Constanza Daniela (can look her up on facebook). I LOVE YOGA
GOD BLESS YOU ALL!!
We read Us in my next article.Be safe.Stay strong.
** CG **