Much more than gentle gymnastics, yoga is a complete system of physical training, but also mental and spiritual training.
It is a set of postures and exercises combined with controlled breathing that provides a physical and positive mindset.
Much more than simple exercises, yoga is a philosophy and a way of life. You can practice Hatha yoga, Vinyasa yoga, Ashtanga yoga, Kundalini yoga, Nidra yoga. There are many forms of yoga, from the most physical to the most spiritual: you are bound to find the one that suits you. The yoga online classes allows you to learn in the comfort of your home, following the teacher on Skype or Zoom.
Yoga: How does it work?
A system of 72,000 nadis, or “energy channels,” runs through the body, intersecting at the chakras, the body’s 7 energy centers. Nadi distributes “prana”, a form of life energy externally represented by the breath, throughout the body.
Focusing on the chakras during yoga and meditation regulates the flow of prana, removing any blockages in the circulation that could cause physical or mental disturbances.
You don’t need to know this theory to benefit from the benefits of yoga, you just have to carefully follow the postures indicated, focusing on your body and your breathing. The postures are accessible to everyone and can be adapted to your flexibility and your physical condition because there is no notion of performance in yoga.
We can mention a multitude of types of yoga, and each has its specificity to the practice.
There are dynamic yogas which consist of performing movements and postures according to the rhythm of the breath.
These are generally physical workouts that relax the body and strengthen the body while facilitating cardiovascular circulation. Among these dynamic exercises, we can notably mention ashtanga and vinyasa.
Anusara is a form of yoga popularized in Western countries since the late 20th century and practiced in over 70 countries. Its doctrine is based on a celebration of the heart and a positive visualization, in every individual and everything.
More static yoga emphasizes alignment and balance in the body. In this type of yoga, the attention is put on asanas which would make you stronger and free from several disorders. Iyengar is the most static form of yoga that develops an understanding of our bodies. It is a disciplined and rigorous course that emphasizes the members of the body, in particular the spine, it is pleasant thanks to its meditative aspect.
Hatha yoga is a gentler version for a yoga practice more suitable for older people.
We can also mention prenatal yoga, a course geared towards the different needs of pregnant women. During pregnancy, their instructor offers them exercises (postures and breathing) adapted to the difficulties of pregnancy and preparation for childbirth. This specific yoga also promotes body balance following the birth of the baby.
Yoga: What is it for?
The asanas (physical postures) and relaxation techniques of yoga have been developed to provide physical (flexibility, vitality) and psychic (awareness, inner peace) benefits.
Some postures help relieve pain, stretch muscles, and improve mobility, others stimulate different organs, digestion, and the lymphatic system.
Many studies report the interest of yoga as a complementary intervention in various situations which include pain, in particular, back pain, cardiovascular problems, stress, and anxiety.