Is Ashtanga Yoga Right for You?
Article by percy10611a
If you’re looking for a type of yoga that’s athletic, physically demanding and that can be practiced at home, then Ashtanga Yoga may be the right choice for you.
This style of yoga is very athletic. There are a series of poses or postures you perform, moving from one to the next without pause. In fact, you sometimes jump from one pose to the next or perform pushups between poses. The poses become more difficult as you progress in training. This is an intense form of yoga, and as such, is often favored by the young and flexible.
Once you’ve mastered the poses and transitions under the watchful eye of an instructor, you can move through the poses at your own pace, even at home. It’s thought that this style of yoga was developed especially to appeal to younger people, who are stronger and more flexible, but who were less interested in holding yoga poses for longer periods of time for introspection. Consequently, the poses used in Ashtanga yoga are challenging and none are held for longer than five breaths.
The series of poses begins with the sun salutation, moves through seated poses, then standing poses, moves into the more challenging twisted poses and finally head stands. While you’re doing this, you must synchronize your breathing as well. This produces “internal heat,” which causes sweating and the release of toxins from your organs and muscles. The practice does improve circulation and can increase your strength and flexibility, as well as providing relaxation and a sense of calm.
For those who practice the full discipline of Ashtanga yoga, there are rules to be followed that involve the practitioner’s lifestyle, including their eating habits, sleeping habits, sexual practices, spiritual life and even the types of medical care they receive. However, most practitioners choose not to follow these strict guidelines, instead focusing on the physical elements only.
To learn Ashtanga yoga, you need to learn from a qualified instructor. Such an instructor who has been trained in the traditional manner is called a guru or yogi. Learning the Ashtanga yoga sequence with one if these guides is extremely important, as there is a serious potential for injury.
There are three levels of difficulty of Ashtanga yoga – the beginner, the intermediate, and the advanced levels. Once you’re an accomplished practitioner, you can practice Ashtanga yoga at home. To do this, you’ll need a space that’s well ventilated, large enough and has a full length mirror so that you can easily check your body position.
This style of yoga places a great deal of emphasis on proper body position. This is why your training should begin with an instructor who can help you learn the postures exactly and help correct any mistakes before they become ingrained. Even in class, however, you’ll be encouraged to move at your own pace once you know the sequence of poses. This type of supervised self-practice is known as the Mysore style, which allows practitioners to respond to the unique demands of their bodies during the Ashtanga practice.
About the Author
Find out more about Ashtanga Yoga as well as burning calories with Bikram yoga at Eat-Healthy-Live-Healthy.com