Yoga in Adelaide - what type for you?

There are so many different types of yoga available. It can be confusing to choose, especially if you are just starting out. Which is right for you?

Don't worry, here is a description of the most popular styles to help you sort it out.

Hatha Yoga

Hatha Yoga is the name of the original yoga that included postures, as well as breathing and other practices. In the modern era it usually refers to a gentler style of yoga. This is curious as the word "hatha" actually means "forceful" and in its original context referred to some pretty heavy duty sorts of austerities! But if the class is described as Hatha, and you are looking for a good stretch, some gentle strength building and a good relax, this is likely to be your class. Generally you might say that many classes at Yoga spirit are Hatha under the modern definition of gentle.

Vinyasa Flow

The word "vinyasa" refers to linking breath and movement and in modern postural yoga is associated with styles that flow one posture into the next. Vinyasa practices can vary from fast paced to a gentle and beautiful exploration of breath and movement. If the class name uses terms like vinyasa, or flow, this is the style to expect. Vinyasa is probably not the best place to start as it is important to know the basics of the postures and how to do them safely, as due to the flowing nature you will not have time to make adjustments. You will find vinyasa style classes at Yoga Spirit Studios.

Bikram Yoga and other hot styles

Bikram Choudhary spearheaded the hot yoga industry with his patented 26 poses and 2 breathing exercises which are practiced in order in a room heated to 40 degrees Celsius. If you love consistency and enjoy a more vigorous practice then this style may appeal but if you feel like you are dying in hot weather, get tachycardia in a hot bath and would never enter a sauna then it might not be your style. A variety of other hot styles have sprung up, many offer more variety and the rooms may not be quite as hot.

Why hot? Proponents talk about being able to stretch better when the body is heated and you will hear people talk about sweating out your toxins.

Anatomically your body will be working hard to maintain its natural body temperature of 37 degrees and if the body temperature goes too high that is called a fever. Under stress you may overstretch and this could be injurious. Sweat does not contain measurable levels of toxins.

Yoga Spirit Studios does not offer hot yoga.

Kundalini Yoga

Kundalini Yoga can be confusing because it can refer to different things. An Indian by the name of Yogi Bhajjan created a system he called Kundalini, which takes much from his own Sikkh tradition. Instructors are likely to wear white clothes and have their heads wrapped in a white turban, and may go by a Sikkh name. Kundalini refers to the energy or shakti that lies dormant at the base of the spine, that can be awakened and forced upwards to unite with universal energy or power at the crown of the head. Other systems of yoga also have kundalini yoga practices and they work with the energy body. Set movements, breathing practices and visualisations are features of this kind of yoga. Some classes at Yoga spirit Studios may include energy body work but will not be called Kundalini.

Yin Yoga

The original postural style of yoga was Hatha and the postures were adopted and held for a very long time. In the modern era more dynamic styles developed and postures were not held for extended periods. Yin Yoga was developed to reintroduce the idea of poses held for extended periods as a counter foil to the more dynamic styles. Yin yoga poses are generally poses that stretch the body. People bothered by their monkey mind may find Yin Yoga challenging initially and might find a more mobile or active practice better in the first instance. Yoga Spirit Studios offers Yin Yoga but you will also find strength building through the holding of poses where the muscles are turned on and working. Both varieties are helpful for the optimal functioning of the body.

Restorative Yoga

Restorative Yoga is a practice of deep relaxation. using copious props such as bolsters and blankets, the body is arranged over supports in positions that in some way are inspired by hatha yoga poses, but have the body completely supported. These poses are then held for long periods of time. Restorative differs from Yin Yoga because the body is supported. The object is not to stretch the body but to relax the body. Restorative work is wonderful for overstressed people who are in need of an adrenal recharge. Yoga Spirit offers periodic restoraative classes, and restorative practices will be offerend in many regular classes.

Meditative Yoga

Yoga traditions have always included meditative practices. Medittion is at the heart of yoga. Yoga Spirit Studios offers meditation in the form of mindfulness, yoga nidra, and meditaiton for mind and body. Postural yoga can also be meditative.

Iyengar Yoga

Mr BKS Iyengar first learnt yoga from his brother in law, a giant in the modern yoga world, Tirumalai Krishnamacharya. He then went on to found a style of yoga that was patented in his name. Iyengar Yoga concentrates on alignment and correct posture. Mr Iyengar pioneered the use of yoga props as enablers, allowing a posture to be practised with good alignment even when the "ultimate" form is unachievable. Yoga Spirit Studios follows the practice of using yoga props as enablers.

Ashtanga Yoga

Another of Krishnamacharya's students was Pattabis Jois, who also went on and created the Ashtanga style of yoga, which is a dynamic and powerful style in which set series of postures are practiced. The practice is a more vinyasa style but is distinguished from the classe that are called Vinyasa or flow as there are set series of postures to be practised. Ashtanga also offers classes in what is termed "Mysore style" in which practitioners come and practice the series they are working on, individually, but in the presence of a teacher who may offer help and advice.

Shadow Yoga

Founded by Zhander Remete, Shadow Yoga is a unique progressive flowing style informed by traditional Hatha practices, martial arts, and works with the energy body.

Jivamukti Yoga

Jivamukti is a strong physical practice that is also grounded in the spiritual traditions. The physical aspects of the practice would fall under the vinyasa and power yoga styles.

Power Yoga

Power yoga is a descriptor that will indicate a strong postural practice that will incorporate strong flowing vinyasa and muscualr strength work.

Aerial Yoga

Take some yoga posture like forms while suspended in hammocks.

Naked yoga, Goat Yoga, Beer Yoga, Wine Yoga, Dog Yoga and what's next yoga

There seems to be no end to which the imagination goes to hop onto the popularity of yoga. The yogic qualities of these fads are spurious.