Yoga… put your hand up if you’re not sure where to start. For anyone exploring yoga it can be daunting trying to work out which style of class to attend. If you don’t know your Ashtanga from your Iyengar don’t worry, you’re not alone.
Whether you are looking to stretch and lengthen tense muscles, or increase physical strength and endurance, a yoga class will be available to suit you and your needs.
The amazing physical and emotional benefits of yoga include:
Lowering stress levels
Improving concentration & focus
Increasing strength & mobility
Boosting energy levels
Building the immune system
To make it easier to find a yoga style that suits you, first work out what you are hoping to gain from your yoga practice. It might be worth looking at other factors in your life. If you participate in a lot of physical or sporting activities you may prefer a more relaxed, gentle yoga session.
On the other hand, if you spend many hours of the day stagnant at your desk you may need a more invigorating practice to get your blood pumping and body moving. In all styles of yoga you will also experience an incredible link to your breath and a feeling of balance and clarity.
You may see ‘Hatha’ used to describe many yoga classes as it is broadly recognised. ‘Hatha’ is a generic term that is used to describe any style of yoga that combines physical poses (asanas), breathing exercises (pranayama) and meditation. In the western world if a class is described as Hatha style, it should give you a good understanding of the basic yoga postures and run at a gentle pace.
If you are attracted to a gentle practice that follows a slow, relaxed pace you many also like to explore Yin, Satyananda or Restorative yoga classes. These classes will be more calming for the body and mind and provide a soothing experience to leave you feeling stress-free bliss.
If you are at the other end of the scale looking for a strong physical practice try Power Vinyasa, Ashtanga or Hot Yoga. These styles are practiced in a warm or hot room to help detoxify the body and allow a deeper range of movement. These practices will weave through a fiery asana flow to build strength and mobility as well as boost energy levels.
This is just the tip of the iceberg. There are many more styles of yoga waiting for you to discover and enjoy. Find a class close by to try, or get in touch if you’d like us to bring a yoga program to you. Whatever yoga you choose – get ready for transformation. Your body and mind will thank you!
Kacey Bennett is the Director of Kula Yoga – proud to be partnering with Revolution Personal Training. Kula Yoga delivers corporate yoga programs throughout Melbourne boosting the health and wellbeing of business employees. www.kulayoga.com.au.