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Yoga, the constant meditation and introspection eradicate these mental flaws. We have organised some background information on understanding Yoga better, which dated as far back as years ago. Just click on the links below for the information you are interested to find out. The Nature of Yoga Gain a general idea of the subject of Yoga, seeking its place in nature, its own character, its object in human evolution.

Schools of Thought Yoga relation to Indian philosophies discussed in this section. As well as the importance of acquainting yourselves sufficiently with Sanskrit language, as in explaining Yoga, one is often at a loss for the English equivalent of the manifold meanings of the Sanskrit tongue. Here, we are dealing only with the science of Yoga and not with other means of attaining union with the Divine. The scientific method is one that follows the old Indian conception. The Yoga we are studying specially concerns the Marga of Jnanam or knowledge, and within that way, within that Marga or path of knowledge, we find that three subdivisions occur, as everywhere in nature.

Yoga as Practice The lower mind, unruffled, waveless, reflects the higher, as a waveless lake reflects the stars. You will remember the phrase used in the Upanishad, which puts it less technically and scientifically, but more beautifully, and declares that in the quietude of the mind and the tranquility of the senses, a man may behold the majesty of the Self. The method of producing this quietude is what we have now to consider in this section.

Conclusion What does the yogi reach at last?

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Find out in this concluding message. Today, however, the words "asana" and "yoga" have become almost synonymous. With increased awareness, the poses become meditation-in-action with awareness of the breath flowing through the body. Each of the poses has specific physical benefits.

Physical tension and imbalances are brought to attention and begin to release.

An Introduction To Yoga!

The poses can be done quickly in succession, creating heat in the body through movement or more slowly to increase stamina and perfect the alignment of the pose. There is an ideal way that each pose should be performed.

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Many people think that yoga is stretching. But while stretching is certainly involved, yoga is really about creating balance in the body through developing both strength and flexibility. Most types of yoga are more concerned with mental and spiritual well-being than physical activity. Yoga teachers will often refer to "your practice," which means your individual experience with yoga as it develops over time. Yoga, first and foremost, must be approached in accordance to your comfort zone. No pose, technique, or instructor behavior will instill any benefit if you are at all uncomfortable. Because yoga is so diverse, there is plenty of room for interpretation from one person to the next, even within the same classroom.

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You need to work at your own pace; not mine, not the neighbor's, not even your own of a week ago. Don't ever let anyone physically push your body into a position beyond that which you are able to assume by yourself; don't let anyone coax you to go further than you wish to go. This is your practice; only you have the wisdom to dictate where your practice goes.

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  4. Although the poses themselves do not change, your relationship to them will. Anyone can start a yoga practice, even if you don't feel like you are very flexible or very strong. These things will develop over time. Another great thing about thinking of yoga as "your practice" is that it encourages the noncompetitive spirit of yoga. One of the most difficult, but ultimately most liberating things about yoga is letting go of the ego and accepting that no one is better than anyone else. Everyone is just doing their best on any given day.

    The amazing thing about yoga is that your practice is always evolving and changing so it never gets boring. Yoga classes may also include instruction on breathing, call and response chanting, meditation, or an inspirational reading by the teacher. The variety and amount of this will depend on the individual teacher and the tradition in which they have trained. Typically, a yoga class at a gym will be more focused on the purely physical benefits of yoga, while one at a yoga center may delve more into the spiritual side.

    Some people find that the physical practice of yoga becomes a gateway into a spiritual exploration while others just enjoy a wonderful low-impact workout that makes them feel great. Whatever your tendency, you will be able to find a yoga class that suits your style. There are many different styles of yoga being taught and practiced today. Although all of the styles are based on the same physical postures called poses , each has a particular emphasis.

    Here is a quick guide to the most popular types of yoga that can help you decode the schedule at your gym and figure out which class is right for you. Hatha is a very general term for slow-paced and gentle yoga, and can provide a good introduction to the basic yoga poses. Vinyasa, which means breath-synchronized movement, tends to be a more vigorous style based on the performance of a series of poses called "Sun Salutations" in which movement is matched to the breath.

    Ashtanga, which means eight limbs in Sanskrit, is a fast-paced, intense style of yoga practice. A set series of poses is performed, always in the same order. Ashtanga practice is very physically demanding, because of the constant movement from one pose to the next.

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    Ashtanga is the inspiration for what is often called "Power Yoga. This style of practice is most concerned with bodily alignment, which is the precise way in which your body should be positioned in each pose in order to obtain the maximum benefits of the pose and avoid injury. Iyengar practice usually emphasizes holding poses over long periods versus moving quickly from one pose to the next.

    The emphasis in Kundalini is on the breath in conjunction with physical movement, with the purpose of freeing energy in the lower body and allowing it to move upwards. Kundalini uses rapid, repetitive movements rather than holding poses for a long time, and the teacher will often lead the class in call and response chanting.

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    Pioneered by Bikram Choudhury, this style is more generally referred to as Hot Yoga. It is practiced in a degree room, which allows for a loosening of tight muscles and profuse sweating, which is thought to be cleansing. Very vigorous types of yoga practice such as Ashtanga and "Power Yoga" are cardiovascular exercise and may help you lose weight, if done regularly, along with a diet plan.

    Doing any type of yoga will build strength, but some types may not raise your heart rate enough to constitute the only form of exercise necessary to a weight loss regime.

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    So don't use this as a substitute to weights and cardio. If you are brand new to yoga, you may want to take a few Hatha classes to learn the basic poses. However, Hatha is usually slow-paced, so if you are the kind of person who likes to move around more, Hatha may turn you off. Even if you are already in great shape, take a few beginners' classes to learn the poses and avoid the risk of injury.