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The Yoga Guide - Finding Your Best Practice

Posted Sep 07 2008 2:01am

The Yoga Guide - Finding Your Best Practice As a yoga teacher in New York City, students and potential students, are always asking about the variety of Hatha yoga classes and what differentiates one from the other. In order to help make choosing a yoga class and a practice best suited to your needs, has developed an informative series and a companion break-out guide to easily understand this ancient yet highly approachable art. In this series we will take a look each week at the most recognized forms of Hatha Yoga.

When people say “Yoga” they probably don’t realize that they are referring to Hatha Yoga which is a system of yoga introduced by Yogi Swatmarama, a yogic sage in the 15th century in India. The word “hatha” comes from the Sanskrit terms “ha” meaning “sun” and “tha” meaning “moon”. Thus, Hatha Yoga is known as the branch of Yoga that unites opposites referring to the positive (sun) and negative (moon) currents in the system. So when you see Hatha Yoga on a class schedule, it is referring to a class, usually 1.5 hours in length, that is comprised of set sequencing of poses, opening and closing with meditation, focusing on breath work and ending with deep relaxation. And within this system there are a number of styles. Some of the more popular and easily found styles - and ones that I have personally experienced - that will be covered in this series are: Ashtanga, Anusara, Bikram, Integral, ISHTA, Iyengar, Jivamukti, Kripalu, Kundalini, Power Yoga and Vinyasa.

So please visit me next week when we give an overview of that powerful, yet concise and disciplined yoga practice Ashtanga. In the meantime, check out the yoga videos on

Written by: Michelle Barge

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