Yoga Information - Different Types of Yoga Styles!
There are so many types of yoga being practiced today. The styles
all vary and this page gives you a brief overveiw of some of the
more popular choices being practiced. Choose from the list below
to review the details.
Ashtanga (Power Yoga)
A softer on the body classical style of yoga, Iyengar is perfect
for beginners and those who haven't exercised in a while. It uses
props such as chairs, straps, blocks and pillows, and even sandbags,
to compensate for a lack of flexibility, which is helpful for anyone
with back or joint problems.
Iyengar is the most widely recognized approach to Hatha Yoga,
it was created by B. K. S. Iyengar. Iyengar yoga is characterized
by attention to detail within poses and the aid of the props.
The props assist all sorts of people to be able to do the poses
The key to all styles of yoga is to get the fundamentals and form
correct, this is where the props aid the student. There is more
focus on symmetry and alignment and also meditation. Each pose is
held for a longer amount of time than in most other yoga styles,
developing a state of focused calm. Iyengar Yoga is meditation in
Benefits include toning muscles, eliminating tension and easing
chronic pain. When we strengthen weak areas of ourselves and open
and stretch tight ones, our bodies return to their correct alignment.
Practicing Iyengar yoga will give you a good knowledge of classic
yoga poses so that whatever other style you practice, you will have
the basic fundamentals of how to do each posture. The teacher focuses
on alignment and inner awareness. Awareness starts with the body
and expands to other parts of the self as one continues with the
regularity of practice.
Ashtanga (Power Yoga)
the preferred choice for athletes, Ashtanga yoga is light on meditation
but heavy on developing strength and stamina. The poses are more
difficult than those performed in other styles, students move quickly
from one pose to another in an effort to build strength and flexibility.
This style is suitable for anyone in reasonable physical condition
but should be avoided by those who are new to exercise. Even the
"beginners" routines are a physically demanding workout.
Ashtanga yoga takes students through a warming up of the body to
"activate" the muscles.
Students move from one pose to another in a continual flow and
combine the inhale and exhale of the breath with movements. This
physically demanding yoga was developed to build strength, flexibility,
Ashtanga yoga is becoming very popular. Expect the teacher to move
the students through a sequence of poses, which is practiced, until
it is mastered to some degree and the fundamentals completely understood.
Then the student moves on to practice another series of poses that
are more difficult, but the foundations are the same.
The series of poses involves weaving in a combination of standing,
seated, backbends, inversions, balancing, and twisting poses into
sun salutation poses which include a standing forward bend, upward
dog, downward dog, and other poses.
There is a focus on breath control and focal point of the eyes
as the students do a specific prescribed series of poses, moving
gracefully from one to another. It is very beneficial for the body
to be warm and/or the room to be heated as one does ashtanga, this
will help the muscles to be very flexible, and help the body avoid
strains due to the physically demanding style of ashtanga.
done in a hot room that is 38C or higher (to replicate the temperature
of yoga's birthplace in India); this style of yoga focuses on 26
postures that are performed in a certain order. The exercises are
very physical and the intensity is high.
When combined with the heat, makes for a tough workout. This style
is recommended for yoga veterans and extremely fit individuals only.
Bikram Yoga originates from Bikram Choudhury.
The Bikram series is warms and stretches muscles, ligaments and
tendons in the order in which they should be stretched. This yoga
has been helpful in removing symptoms of disease and chronic pain
in the body, which works if the student maintains regular practice.
This mellow form of yoga focuses on simple poses that flow from
one to the other at a very comfortable pace. Participants are encouraged
to go at their own pace, taking time to focus on the breathing and
meditation in their practice. This yoga is ideal for winding down
at the end of a tough day.
which incorporates mantras (chanting), meditations, visualizations,
and guided relaxation. It focuses on healing and "purifying"
the mind, body, and emotions. Kundalini yoga is designed to activate
the kundalini energy in the spine.
This is achieved with poses, breath control, chanting, and meditation.
Kundalini yoga is beneficial in dealing with addictions, and many
people find it a natural way of releasing endorphins just by breathing
and doing the poses.
Kundalini yoga consists of poses combined with breath control,
hand and finger gestures, body locks, chanting and meditation. You
will practice precise postures; sounds and breathing that activate
different parts of the body and the brain to produce specific results
which is more spontaneous, flowing, and meditation orientated. Kripalu
yoga starts with the first stage, postural alignment and intertwining
of breath and movement, and the poses are held a short time.
The student progresses to the second stage with meditation included
and poses held for longer. Finally, the practice of poses becomes
a spontaneous dynamic movement. The essence of Kripalu yoga is experienced
through a continuous flow of postures whilst meditating, for gentle
yet dynamic yoga.
Practice would start with meditation and centering, breathing,
warm up movements to heat up and prepare for poses, yoga postures,
guided posture flows and relaxation.
has a series of 12 poses, with the Sun Salutation, breathing exercises,
relaxation, and mantra chanting as the basis. These are the elements
in a typical class:
Balancing posture (which is usually the peacock pose)
Standing forward bend
and Universal Prayer
a slower more individualized form of yoga. This form develops strength,
balance and healing, make it ideal for beginners, seniors, people
with chronic pain or who are in rehabilitation from injury or disease.
which aims for "liberation through meditation." People
who are capable of intense concentration mainly practice this form
or "devotional yoga," which focuses on self-surrender
in the face of the Divine.
or "yoga of potent sound," which aims at liberation through
the verbal or mental repetition of empowered sounds, such as "om,"
"hum," or "ram."