Tag Archives: ashtanga yoga

Which Yoga Style is Right for You? We Match Personality with Practice

Certain people are attracted to certain styles of yoga for various reasons. Just as the color of your yoga mat can affect your practice, your favorite yoga style might say something about your personality.

The following is a fun, light-hearted list of yoga styles, and the personalities they attract.

Restorative Yoga

This style of yoga is for those in need of some serious power relaxing, and not ashamed to admit it. For restorative yoga lovers, there is no guilt in shutting out the world with a lavender eye pillow and kicking back on a fluffy pile of blankets for an hour.

Power Yoga

Active styles of yoga, such as power yoga, vinyasa yoga, Ashtanga yoga, attract the spirited sorts who are looking to improve athletically, and stretch their acrobatic skills.

Yoga in this category is seriously physical, but this is not to say there is no spiritual element to it. People who gravitate toward strength-oriented yoga classes often find spiritual inspiration through physical challenges. (more…)

Myths and Truths of Practicing Yoga on the Full Moon

This weekend, on Cinco de Mayo (this Saturday, May 5), the moon will not only be full, it will appear to be larger than any other full moon this year. Aptly named the ‘supermoon,’ Saturday’s full moon will be about 16 percent brighter than average. Due to its position in orbit, the moon is in its perigee stage, which means it is closest to the Earth. Because the moon’s orbit is not perfectly circular, it has moments when it is closer, and moments when it is further away. To have a full moon coincide with the moon’s perigee is incredibly super, hence the nickname it was given.

Whether you are planning on taking a stroll in the moonlight, or taking a drive out into the countryside to see the moon rise from behind the trees, it should be a marvelous sight. An evening yoga session even sounds like a blissful endeavor during the supermoon, but according to the ancient yogi sages, there are some precautions to consider. Since this moon is bigger, brighter, and a bit more special than any other full moon, it is worth examining some myths and truths for practicing yoga during a full moon. (more…)

Common Yoga Misconceptions Clarified

The following is a compilation of some of the most common misconceptions about yoga I come across, and my responses to them.

“I can’t even touch my toes, how am I supposed to do yoga?”

This is a very popular fear and misconception that keeps people from trying yoga for the first time. While flexibility is important to perform certain poses, no teacher expects a new student to be super limber. Flexibility comes with time and practice; it is not a requirement to walk in the door.

“Yoga is too hard.”

Some styles of yoga are very challenging, however other styles such as Hatha, Yin and Restorative Yoga are gentle, and offer a great starting point to build up strength and stamina for harder classes.

“Just sitting there and breathing is not my thing, I need something more active.”

If you want a hard workout that challenges every single muscle group and more, seek an Ashtanga, Power Vinyasa or Bikram Yoga class. These classes are not for the timid and do require a moderate to high level of fitness to attend.

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What is Hatha Yoga?

Hatha yoga is one of those commonly misunderstood and misused words in yoga. Unlike Ashtanga, Bikram or Iyengar, which are specific styles of yoga, Hatha yoga is the umbrella term for what Westerners consider to be yoga. In truth, Hatha yoga is the actual physical practice of yoga, or the postures. Therefore, all yoga that involves asana or postures is hatha yoga.

What it is

Hatha comes from two Sanskrit words: ha meaning sun and tha meaning moon. Implied in its meaning is the idea of uniting opposites, like the sun and moon or yoga’s specific meaning of yoking the mind, body and spirit together. (more…)

Gwyneth Paltrow’s Fitness Routine on the Rachael Ray Show

Tune in this Friday, January 7 to the Rachael Ray Show when Academy Award winning actress, Gwyneth Paltrow stops by for the first time.

Gwyneth will dish with Rachael about the fitness routine that keeps her slim, as well as her new singing role in the movie Country Song, which she reportedly gained 20 pounds in order to play the role of a country singer desperate to make a comeback. (more…)

Tune In: Amazing Weight Loss Stories on the Rachael Ray Show

Tune in this Friday, March 19 to the Rachael Ray Show to hear one woman’s inspirational story about losing 164 pounds, and find out her number one tip for keeping the weight off!

Julie struggled with her weight her entire life and reached a high of 321 pounds, but it wasn’t until her mother was diagnosed with cancer that she decided to make a change.

After doing research and learning that being morbidly obese increases your risk of cancer, Julie committed herself to Weight Watchers and their Lose for Good campaign. The 32-year-old has since lost 164 pounds, and she tells Rachael the most important thing she gained from the program. (more…)

An Introduction to Raja Yoga

Some common names we think of when it comes to yoga include Ashtanga, Bikram, or Vinyassa, but Raja yoga is not one that quickly comes to mind, unless you’re Deepak Chopak or a devotee of this ancient spiritual practice.

So exactly what is Raja yoga? Here is a basic overview of this transforming and meditative style of yoga.

The Philosophy

Raja yoga, or sometimes referred to as Raj yoga, literally translates to the “royal way to union,” with union representing the melding of the mind, body and spirit.

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Most Popular Yoga Classes

yoga chartChoosing a yoga style is like trying to find a great pair of jeans. You may have to test out a few dozen styles before you find a pair that fits your body and your personality.

Here are five of the most popular yoga classes and an introduction into the philosophy, history and style of each.

Ashtanga Yoga: One of the oldest form of yoga, Ashtanga Yoga, is Sanskrit for “eight limbs,” which represent the eight aspects of yoga as outlined by the sage Patanjali in the Yoga Sutras. Even though Ashtanga yoga is believed to be 5,000 years old, if not older, its modern popularity is credited to Sri K. Pattabhi Jois, who in 1948, under the guidance of his guru, Krishnamacharya, created The Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute in Mysore, India for teaching this specific style of yoga.

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A Beginner’s Guide to Yoga

yogaSo everybody in your life, including your pregnant friend, 65-year-old mom and teen-aged niece, are all doing yoga. After listening to them extol the benefits that this ancient Indian practice has had on their stressed out minds and seeing the proof in their new lean yoga bodies, it is time that you discover firsthand what the yoga buzz is all about.

But before you lift off into a headstand in the middle of your kitchen, read our Beginner’s Guide to Yoga so that you’ll be in the know-how as you roll out your mat and join the millions of Americans practicing yoga. (more…)

Jivamukti Yoga 101

Jivamukti yoga founders: David Life & Sharon Gannon

Jivamukti yoga founders: David Life & Sharon Gannon

With a meaning like “liberation while living” it is no wonder that Jivamukti yoga has the devoted and loyal following that it does. Started in 1984 by David Life and Sharon Gannon who incorporated their training as Ashtanga yoga students under the tutelage of Ashtanga yoga master Sri K. Pattabhi Jois, Jivamukti yoga is a popular and disciplined form of yoga that is practiced all over the country.

Combining both asana, pranayama (breath work) and music, a Jivamukti class is a dynamic yoga experience, both physically and spiritually. A typical class does practice chanting, but beginners are not expected to chime in – only if their comfort and knowledge allows them. (more…)