What It Is

Vinyasa Yoga is a type of yoga that developed as an offshoot of Ashtanga yoga. It may have developed to accommodate people who felt that Ashtanga yoga was too rigid and strict. Ashtanga yoga is a type of yoga that was developed by a 20th century guru by the name of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois. In comparison to most other types of yoga, Ashtanga is powerful, dynamic, and strict in terms of the way the poses are done. Unlike Vinyasa, one must master a given stage or pose before moving on to the next level.

With Vinyasa yoga, students have the freedom to progress based on their own capacity. Although Vinyasa contains almost all the poses found in Ashtanga, students do not have to follow the same sequence when performing them. One is free to move to another more accommodative pose when he or she feels that they are unable to master the previous one.

As new styles of yoga keep developing, there are numerous offshoots that have developed under Vinyasa. These include Flow Yoga, Power Yoga, Prana Yoga, Anusara, Hot Vinyasa, and Jivamukti.

The poses in Vinyasa are unique in that they flow in a dynamic sequence. The performance of Vinyasa involved synchronizing continuously flowing postures with one’s breathe. By combining these flowing movements, one can improve health, strength, flexibility, stamina, and calm the mind. The combination of breathing and postures is an important part of Vinyasa Yoga.

The Benefits of Vinyasa Yoga

Like most other types of yoga, Vinyasa offers numerous benefits to students, once a person commits to it. Here are some of them:

Self-understanding

The fact that Vinyasa is not as strict as Ashtanga and some other forms of yoga, it offers something else instead. A chance to self-evaluate. While members still benefit from the exercise part of it, the real benefits are in engaging with oneself, understanding yourself and even knowing how to love yourself.

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Improves Health

Vinyasa movement helps engage various organs in the body thereby improving their overall state. For example, the poses help open up the muscles, practice the joints, improving bodily air circulation, and thereby decongesting the body organs.

Offers a Chance to Meditate

The form of meditation offered in Vinyasa Yoga is dynamic. This is because tutors encourage participants to engage their minds fully even as they make the flow movements. There is no completeness in Vinyasa without strong mental engagement.

Organization of the Classes

When joining a yoga class, there are four key areas that one should endeavor to understand. These are:

Breathing and Movement – Here you learn when, how, and when to incorporate breathing into the yoga movements.

Understanding Sun Salutations – Each Vinyasa class incorporates these salutations making them a basic component.

How to Vary and Adapt to the various movements. – Since Vinyasa is not a rigid yoga class, it is important to know when to transition to the next step.

Finally, understand alignments and transitions. These are the basics of Vinyasa and they are easy to learn and understand.

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