Yoga is a practice to connect the mind and body. It is a popular method all around the globe for realizations in connectedness and wholeness. There are people who look for rock hard stomachs, and others who want to empty themselves through chanting Om. In the new age scenario, yoga offers a variety of styles depending on the suitability of individuals. The popular one’s are Sivananda, Hatha, Iyengar and Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga.
Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga is a popular dynamic style for gaining a balanced mind and body. Vinyasa means one breath for each movement, easily understood as combining breathing and movement. This style is formed of key elements like:
- Postures (asanas): Purifies, strengthens and gives flexibility to the body.
- Breath (pranayama): Purifies the nervous system.
- Focus (drishti): Purifies and stabilizes the functioning of mind.
The combination of these three elements produces heat in the body that works towards cleansing and purifying the internal organs and muscles. The system comprises of set sequences that looks like a precise movement series.
Ashtanga yoga is a way of improving alignment, gaining strength and ideal for losing weight. Proper alignment works towards improving blood circulation, creating inner space in the joints and carrying a balanced flow of energy in the body. Additionally, proper breathing is an important part to the philosophy of yoga as it unites the body with mind and teaches many to relax.
Self-inquiry is another component of Ashtanga vinyasa yoga. Every posture teaches something. It gives an opportunity to withdraw from outside chattering and concentrate in that precise moment. Few other benefits are raising consciousness and awareness. This style of yoga appeals to many who like routine and regularity in their exercise. Although it is a very specific technique, it can be adaptable to meet the requirements for a wide range of people.
– Avantika Kochar
Avantika is a dance researcher, performer, choreographer, yoga teacher and visual artist (www.avantikakochar.com).
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