Yoga is the practice of mindful movement that started about 5,000 years ago and it has never been more popular as legions of followers swear by it. People practicing yoga around the world is ever growing; and in fact it has recently been named “the leader of the pack” among others such as tai chi, barre, pilates, etc.
According to a report from the Global Wellness Institute, there are 165 million people around the world who participate in the practice, making it a whopping $16.9 billion market. It wrote, “In our frenetically paced, stressful, sleepless, and chronic-pain-plagued world, the demand for slower, mindful movement—which includes yoga, Pilates, tai chi, qigong, stretch, barre, Gyrotonic, etc.—is skyrocketing.”
Strength, flexibility, balance, anxiety reduction, stress release, solitude, and enhanced concentration are just a few of the many benefits you get from yoga. Though some people think that flowing on the mat isn’t for them, it may be possible that they may be practicing the wrong type of yoga.
The truth is, there is actually a wide variety of yoga disciplines that you can choose from. The question on which to pick will mainly depend on your personality and of course, your current fitness level. Read on to explore the most common and popular types of yoga practices and discover which among these suits you best.
The word vinyasa means “linking breath with movement”. It is one of the most popular practices taught in yoga studios and gyms around the metro. The poses are usually done in a sequence called vinyasa flow. These slow but fluid movements is a type of moving meditation that is almost like a series of dance steps. The sensual movements in Vinyasa is usually practiced with eyes shut or inside a dark room accompanied with pleasant music to enhance the mind’s power to concentrate.
Similar to Vinyasa, Ashtanga also involves synchronization of breaths with poses and fluid movements. This is a traditional type of Indian yoga that means “eight limbs” and is also known as power yoga. By the sound of it, yes – it is for advanced yoginis. Unlike in Vinyasa, the sequence of poses are practiced the same way in the same order every time: from Sun Salutation A, Sun Salutation B, standing sequence, and closing sequence. These asanas (postures) involve multiple surynamaskars followed by standing and floor postures. It takes years of practice to master this form.
Apart from the twenty six basic postures that you have to work on, the other challenge in Bikram yoga is to withstand the 41°C heat inside the room with 40% humidity in ninety minutes. Doing the movements in such artificially heated room will make your body sweat vigorously thereby excreting harmful toxins while each posture deliver oxygenated blood towards your body organs. Similar to Ashtanga, Bikram yoga follows the same poses in the same order of sequence although the asanas in Bikram are different. Regular hydration during the course of this class is a must.