Types of Yoga Exercises and Their Benefits
The many different types of yoga certainly make it difficult for you to determine which style will be suitable for you when you want to start yoga. Most yoga styles are based on the same basic yoga poses (called asanas), but the experience of one style can be very different from another. For you yoga beginners, Happyfit will outline the most popular types of yoga and their essential benefits, to make it easier for you to know where to start.
Ashtanga Yoga is a type of yoga brought to the modern world by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois. The Asthanga yoga method involves synchronizing the breath with a series of body movements. Ashtanga deep breathing techniques are useful for focusing the mind and controlling the flow of breath throughout the body while increasing flexibility and strength.
Bikram / Hot Yoga
Both types of yoga use a room with a high temperature of around 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit). Both will make you sweat and feel challenged. How come? In a hot room with a carpeted floor and mirrors on the walls and under bright lights you have to follow 26 or more yoga poses. The benefits will not betray your efforts, apart from building muscle strength and flexibility, bikram/hot yoga is also said to be a detox and release toxins in your body.
Hatha Yoga is a general category that includes most types of yoga. Hatha Yoga consists of the practice of asana (yoga postures) and pranayama (breathing exercises) that help bring calm to the mind and body. Today, the term Hatha is used so widely that it is difficult to know what a class of hanta would be. In most cases, hatha yoga is relatively gentle, relaxing, and great for beginners.
Kundalini Yoga is a combination of repetitive movements or exercises, breathing techniques, chanting and meditation. Each particular kundalini practice is called a kriya. Kundalini yoga practice is useful for awakening energy at the base of the spine to pull it upward through the seven chakras. This form of Kundalini Yoga looks and feels very different from others, due to its focus on enhanced repetitive breathing and the movement of energy through the body.
Iyengar Yoga is a very meticulous style of yoga that focuses on the intricacies of each pose. What is different in Iyengar yoga classes is that the poses are held much longer than in other types of yoga, in an effort to pay more attention to proper musculoskeletal alignment in each asana. Iyengar Yoga usually uses props such as Yoga Blocks, Yoga Rollers, Exercise Straps, and other yoga accessories to minimize injury.
Anusara Yoga is the newest type of hatha yoga and a lighter version of Iyengar Yoga. Anusara Yoga teaches a series of universal principles that underlie all yoga poses, the movements flow gracefully and follow the heart. Anusara is also a beginner-friendly type of yoga.
Restorative Yoga is a calming and relaxing type of yoga, it will rejuvenate you more than a nap or night on the couch. With as few as five poses in one class, this class is ideal for injury recovery or stress rehabilitation. Head to a studio for restorative (“yin”) yoga if you need a psychological cleanse.
Like Hatha, Vinyasa Yoga is an umbrella term that describes many different styles of yoga. Vinyasa Yoga classes are also often called flow classes, which refers to a continuous flow from one yoga posture to the next. Friendly to beginners and advanced yogis, vinyasa will strengthen the body’s core and create a connection between movement and breath.
Power Yoga is the fitness of yoga. Power Yoga can be useful for losing weight because its function is to recruit every muscle in the body. It can increase the body’s metabolism and result in higher calorie burning. Although considered the most athletic style of yoga, power yoga is difficult for even an athlete to perform.
Pennatal Yoga is perfect for expectant mothers. The movements can improve posture, core strength, and breathing technique while relieving pain during pregnancy. This is a safe and smart form of exercise to stay fit while waiting, and a great opportunity to share parenting tips with fellow pregnant women and the page here.