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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.
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Serena William’s Grueling Tennis Workouts

Serena Williams is not just one of the world’s premiere female tennis stars, she is also one of the strongest women in the sport. She’s certainly not a lean, slim player, but her entire physique speaks volumes about strength and fitness. Tennis is, after all, a game of speed, strength and endurance, and Serena has mastered all three.

A knee injury from 2004 and a bad hamstring have long hampered her running, and she freely admits that she does not enjoy cardio work, both factors which probably have contributed to her less-than-lean build. Serena has said, “I hate working out more than anything, but I have to — when I’m running, I think about how much I want to win. That’s the only thing that keeps me going.”


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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.
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