The following is a list of common yoga styles and some of their traits.
Hatha yoga is one of the most common forms of yoga. It focuses on slow, gentle movements. It’s good for both beginners and more experienced students. Hatha yoga poses often begin with simple stretches that are held, motionless, for short periods of time. Many Hatha yoga poses can be done from a chair or a wheelchair.
Vinyasa yoga focuses on simple, basic movements as well. The difference is that more attention is given to breathing and synchronizing breaths with movements. The movements are slightly more dynamic and may resemble very slow dancing.
Kundalini yoga is designed to help increase awareness of one’s self physically, mentally and spiritually. Much attention is given to reflecting, focusing and concentrating.
Restorative yoga includes the use of implements such as foam blocks, towels or blankets to support the body and reduce strain. It is often combined with Hatha poses adapted for use on the floor or in a chair.
Ashtanga or power yoga is fast paced and poses are often performed as part of a specific routine or set of movements put together, one after another.
Bikram or hot yoga uses heat to increase an individual’s flexibility. It replicates the heat and humidity of the region of the world in which yoga originated.
Iyengar yoga focuses primarily on body alignment. It holds each pose for longer periods of time in order to increase stamina.
If you are interested in trying any of these yoga styles, please consult your physician first. Yoga might be the answer to your resolve to improve your well-being this year.
By Margaret Hemauer, ACC, MA, NHA
Quality/Performance Improvement Consultant