Types of Yoga

(July 25, 2008)

What are the different types of yoga?

Numerous forms of yoga are practiced all over the world. However the most popular among them are Hatha Yoga, The Kundalini Yoga, The Bikram Yoga, and The Ashtanga yoga.

Hatha yoga is the one of the most popularly practiced type of yoga worldwide that deems well with beginners. It is the gentlest form of yoga practice where the individual makes slow and smooth motions known as yogasanas. The concentration of this particular form of yoga is on maintaining the pose and incorporating the breathing technique into that particular motion. Hatha yoga is an excellent form of stretching and working the muscles in a positive manner. Through its gentle strokes and movements one can achieve mental relaxation as well as physical workout. Another important form of yoga known as Iyengar yoga is also a type of Hatha yoga, but the concentration here is on the correct alignment of the body and an emphasis on the bodily balance. In this form of yoga, the poses are held for a longer time and a variety of props are used in the practice of Iyengar yoga. The props include flexible straps, warm blankets, and wooden blocks. This form of yoga is also suitable for beginners.

The Kundalini yoga accentuates on speedy motions and movements along with the poses while emphasizing on the deep breathing techniques, chanting, and intense meditation. This form of yoga is spiritually inclined and has a greater spiritual focus than Hatha or Iyengar Yoga. The Kundalini form of yoga concentrates on the balance of energy in the body. Novices unacquainted with Hatha Yoga asanas are likely to find that Kundalini yoga is much more physically and mentally stimulating and intense than they would be comfortable with. It is appropriate that one initiates with Hatha Yoga and Iyengar and then gradually progresses on Kundalini Yoga.

Bikram yoga is performed in a closed and sometimes non-ventilated room. The room is usually heated to about 38 degree Celsius. According to the philosophy of Bikram yoga, the intensive sweating helps in burning calories faster and helps get rid of toxins in a more effective manner. Bikram yoga believes that are heated room helps in the loosening up of muscles and a proper cleansing of the body. There is no known study of research conducted on Bikram yoga, to prove the efficacy of the heated room theory. Individuals with heart problems or high blood pressure are often recommended not to go in for Bikram yoga because of the risk of dehydration, blood pressure alterations, and cardiac troubles in such an environment.

Ashtanga, or power yoga, on the other hand is planned to develop power and endurance of an individual. This form of yoga is also aggressive when an individual has to move quickly from one yogasana to another. The concept of meditation is not dealt with deeply in this form of yoga, and it closely resembles to that of all traditional exercise session complete with the effects of weight training.

Submitted by C D on July 25, 2008 at 05:35

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