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Understanding The Different Types Of Yoga

Sep 6, 2007
There are many different types of yoga and each has its own traits and benefits. By picking up the fundamental on each and every type of yoga, you can determine what is suitable for you.

Hatha Yoga is one of the most widespread and it a divine practice that concentrates on the physical aspects to derive mental, emotional and physical health. It goes back to the fifteenth century and founded by Yogi Swatmarama, a wise teacher. Hatha yoga is called "hatha vidya" with "ha" means the sun and "tha" implies the moon and together they are the "nadis" or the flow of energy in the body and must work to achieve "dhyana" a feature of meditation.

The full notion of the ancient hatha yoga is a divine path that encompasses moral and ethics, exercises, breathe control and meditation. Hatha yoga practices that are taken up by western practitioners largely concentrate on poses. Both hatha and raja yoga concentrate on the physical aspects and are collectively known as astanga yoga.

The key difference is that raja yoga concentrate on "asanas" or poses to prepare the body for extended meditation.

On the other hand, Hatha yoga creates harmony in the mind and body through exercises, breathe control as well as relaxing the mind by relaxing and meditating. Adopting different poses can ease or prevent health troubles from constipation to cancer.

Raja yoga is known as king of yoga and is also referring to as "Classical yoga" or "Astanga yoga". It is a practice that has to do with the stimulus and harmony of the mind from yoga poses. Raja yoga is also able to manage your feelings in addition to getting your bodies into raja yoga postures. In Indian civilization, the mind lords over the body hence raja.

Astanga, known as eight limbed yoga and is the eight objectives of raja yoga to become a raja yoga master: "Yama" is the application and observance of being moral. "Niyama" is staying true to your own spirituality. The practice in India is believed to be abiding by religious traditions and festivals.

"Asana" is subjecting your body to the various poses to achieve relaxation and increase flexibility. "Pranayama" is keeping to a correct breathing technique by not constantly thinking about the past, as it results in superficial breath. "Prana", generally refers to "life force" in Hindu. "Pratayahara" is through forming your own strength of will and mind without subjecting to outside influence.

"Dharana" is observing of meditation, "Dhyana" is to maintain self detachment. This is by far the most difficult objective of raja yoga to clarify. An absolute ideal is to be free of any emotional or materials attachment to be one and harmonize with the God and the Universe even depriving yourself of food, oxygen and sleep. Once your body attains flexibility, it will align with your needs and desires. "Samadhi", this is the highest state, to be one with God, the Nirvana state of raja yoga.

While Ivengar focus on the right alignment and shape of the body and cling to it for extended period of time instead of changing poses like ashtanga yoga. Props are also requiring in ivengar yoga to achieve alignment.

One of the most widespread types of yoga is the bikram yoga and it is practiced in forty degree Celsius and forty percent humidity. It was founded by Bikram Choudhury and main philosophy is to achieve better breathing and body suppleness as well as circulation in the body. The increased temperature will induce the blood to flow.

Bikram yoga has 26 postures and two detailed breathe control. Bikram yoga is taught by trained and licensed practitioners in order to provide a safe environment for those taking it up. This type of yoga will make you suppler with a better body circulation, an ability to manage breathing together with many other benefits.

Besides the few major types of yoga that are mentioned above, other forms of yoga exist but to start off with yoga, it is best to be acquainted with one of these major types. Having a rough idea of all these major types, you can proceed to find out about other forms of yoga. For beginners, astanga yoga is the most ideal as all other different features can be picked up from there.
About the Author
Cindy Heller is a professional writer. Visit free yoga exercises to learn more about yoga positions for beginners and yoga symbols.
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