Yoga has become one of the hottest fitness and spiritual practices here in the U.S., but in India, yoga’s country of origin, the face of yoga looks markedly different than what we are familiar with. For the month of June and July, I will be in Mysore, India, the hub of Ashtanga yoga, one of the oldest known forms of yoga that is still practiced with enthusiasm and dedication today. Although this is my second trip to the sacred country of India, these five weeks are different because I am here studying yoga with my family, just a few weeks following the death of Ashtanga master, Sri. K. Pattabhi Jois. (more…)
Yoga is supposed to take away from the need of material things, but when it comes to your practice, there are a few essentials that even the most bendy and accomplished practitioners can’t down-dog without.
1). A solid yoga mat: You can get a yoga mat anywhere these days from Target to Walgreens to JCrew. But all mats are not created equal. If you’re an avid practitioner, invest in a good quality yoga mat. My favorite one is “Mercedes of all yoga mats,” or the premium black mat. Barefoot yoga sells it for about $80. (They also have more affordable, environmentally friendly mats.) It’s a bit pricey for a yoga mat but I guarantee, this one will last you for a lifetime! (more…)
Whether you’ve performed a few rounds of sun salutations or been twisted into Triangle pose, chances are you’ve done Ashtanga yoga. Ashtanga yoga is one of the oldest forms of yoga. Its series of postures has its origins in the Yoga Korunta, an ancient Indian manuscript. It is technically referred to as Ashtanga Vinyassa yoga, “vinyassa” referring to a dynamic system of breathing and movement.
The postures included in the six series of the Ashtanga yoga practice are presumed to be a few thousand years old. It wasn’t until the early 20th century that guru Sri Krishnamacharya and his student, Sri K. Patthabhi Jois took the postures outlined in the Yoga Korunta and devised a system of yoga that was initially taught to children and adolescents. (more…)