Yoga has a history of 5,000 years and includes many types of yoga asanas, for enhancing awareness, and meditation. It is certain that a particular type of yoga will suit you, from mild stretching to meditative breathing techniques.
This guide will help you understand how many types of yoga asanas are there and how you can practice them — after all, everybody is unique and has various needs. But before we deep dive into the different types of yoga asanas, let’s first understand what are the benefits of yoga.
You can also choose to enroll yourself to our 200 hour yoga teacher training program to get trained on becoming a yoga teacher from the best yoga instructors at Rishikul Yogshala Rishikesh.
Table of Contents
Why Should You Consider Practicing Yoga?
If you practice yoga for a significant time, you will notice considerable changes in your body and your state of mind. Some of the main benefits of practicing yoga include:
Weight loss is the outcome of consistent practice
Delays aging in general and are naturally therapeutic
Improved blood flow that enhances the quality and texture of the skin
Beneficial for digestive improvement and intestinal health
Increases physical strength
Improves reproductive health and fertility
Calms you down and reduces anxiety
Helps with focus
Beneficial for digestive improvement and intestinal health
Improves your sleep cycle
Now the question is what are the different types of yoga? And which one should you practice?
How Many Types of Yoga are There?
Here are some of the most commonly practiced types of yoga in India and around the world:
Aerial or Anti-Gravity Yoga
Now we’ll understand what these different types of yoga do to the mind and body.
1. Hatha Yoga
Hatha yoga, which is regarded as a gentle kind of yoga, consists of simple beginner positions that you must hold for a few breaths. Hatha, which is a Sanskrit term, meaning “force.” It’s crucial to start here since, technically speaking, the name “Hatha yoga” refers to a discipline of the force. Simply put, Hatha refers to any branch of yoga that involves physical positions.
Best for beginners as it’s the broadest category and comprises fundamental yoga poses and breathing exercises that help you improve your meditation and find inner peace. Yoga should be practiced on an empty stomach. Try to perform it quietly and without talking, and avoid drinking any liquids.
2. Kundalini Yoga
Kundalini yoga sometimes referred to as the “yoga of consciousness,” involves repeated positions. The dormant kundalini Shakti is awakened via kundalini yoga.
The purpose of kundalini is to awaken the shakti, or spiritual force, that resides at the lower spine. As a result, the active energy ascends the spine and supports your spiritual health. Thus it can be said that practicing Kundalini yoga combines both physical and spiritual aspects.
|Have trouble falling asleep? Subjects in research by Harvard Medical School reported sleeping 36 minutes longer on average each night following eight weeks of Kundalini yoga practice.|
Kundalini Yoga is extremely helpful for dealing with stress, anxiety, sadness, and improved cognitive function.
3. Ashtanga Yoga
The Yoga Sutras of the sage Patanjali are directly related to Ashtanga yoga. Ashtanga is also known as the “Eight Limb Way” in Sanskrit.
It consists of six sequences of specific yoga positions while breathing and moving. It denotes the eight limbs or branches of yoga:
Asana, or posture
Dharana, or concentration
Dhyana, or deep meditation
Niyama, or self-purification and study
Pranayama, or breath control
Pratyahara, or withholding the mind from the senses
Samadhi, or union with the meditation’s subject
Yama, or moral principles
It’s a strenuous practice that will increase the body’s flexibility and endurance. The types of yoga asanas done under Ashtanga Yoga are:
Surya bhedi pranayama
Anulom vilom pranayama
Chandra bhedi pranayama
4. Vinyasa Yoga
This kind of yoga is frequently referred to as “flow” yoga. Vinyasa comprises the words Vi and Nyasa, where “Vi” stands for variety and “Nyasa” for within boundaries.
This kind of yoga links movement and breath to help you establish a rhythm in the body when you practice yoga. Advanced vinyasa yoga techniques include meditation, which helps the style become more aware.
Yoga practitioners who practice vinyasa begin the flow with the child’s position and end it with the death posture (the savasana). Every posture’s entry point transitions show how people move through life. And if you’re a beginner to this type of yoga, the sequence you could be following could look something like this:
Kumbhakasana or Plank pose
Ashtanga Namaskara or Knees-Chest-Chin Pose
Bhujangasana or Cobra pose
Adho Mukha Svanasana or Downward-Facing Dog pose
However, it must be done under the supervision of a professional yoga instructor, like in Rishikul Yogshala Rishikesh.
5. Iyengar Yoga
This style of yoga, which was developed in the 1970s by B.K.S. Iyengar, is centered on the accuracy of the different types of yoga asanas. Now, this is the stage where you become acquainted with equipment like yoga blocks and blankets that allow you to exercise while moving.
In order to position your body correctly in each pose, you must focus on accuracy and detail in this situation. The postures are held for extended lengths of time since they assist you in correctly aligning your body posture. It promotes flexibility and strength while treating a variety of diseases.
This kind of yoga emphasizes precise and intricate movements in addition to alignment. Students in an Iyengar yoga session move through a range of postures while managing their breathing.
|Want to treat back pain and injuries? This kind of yoga could be an excellent choice to try if you’re searching for a form to treat back pain or other problems. However, we always advise speaking with a doctor before starting a new fitness routine.|
6. Bikram Yoga
Bikram Choudhury, an American yoga guru of Indian descent who immigrated to America in 1971, established Bikram yoga, which rose to prominence in the 1990s thanks to a number of high-profile celebrity practitioners.
In a room that is set to around 104℉ (40℃) with 40% humidity, this type of yoga is practiced in a set of 26 postures and 2 breathing techniques while being soaked in perspiration. However, due to such conditions, it might become difficult to practice consistently in the same manner.
7. Aerial or Anti-Gravity Yoga
If you wish to try something unusual, then aerial yoga or anti-gravity yoga could be your choice to pick ! This kind of yoga is appropriate for both beginners and more experienced practitioners. Aerial yoga, in contrast to traditional yoga, also includes other activities while resisting gravity. It combines the benefits of aerobic workouts like swimming or jogging with yoga.
So what are the advantages of practicing such types of yoga? It greatly increases flexibility, and by giving each portion of the body a decent stretch, one may undoubtedly broaden their perspectives. Additionally, it eases stress in your joints and tissues, builds up the muscles in your core, and increases your endurance. Thus, it promotes the development of slim, and toned muscles.
8. Restorative Yoga
The main goals of restorative yoga are to help you unwind after a tough day and regain your equilibrium. This fashion mostly emphasizes bodily relaxation. In order to give complete body stability in every posture, a variety of props, including blankets and blocks, are employed. It bends the crucial body components while allowing your body to totally relax and recuperate.
There are often just 4-5 positions in this kind of yoga, such as:
Setu Bandha Sarvangasana or Supported Bridge Pose
Matsyasana or Supported Fish Pose
Paschimottanasana or Supported Forward Fold
Jathara Parivartanasana or Supine Spinal Twist
Viparita Karani or Legs Up The Wall
Very few positions may be completed in a session because each one can be maintained for around 20 minutes. But spending time being coached by a yoga instructor and settling into the types of yoga asanas can have massive results as it helps participants attain a deep level of relaxation.
The primary goal of restorative yoga is to calm the neurological system. An excellent way to actively reduce tension and soothe tense muscles. As a result, restorative yoga may also be a great way to reduce stress since resting in these positions for a long time gives you the chance to pay attention to your body’s signals and concentrate.
9. Yin Yoga
Yin yoga, which has its roots in the 1970s and was developed by Paulie Zink, an American martial artist, is comparable to restorative yoga as it uses slow-moving poses and stretches to lengthen connective tissues and muscles more deeply. Yin yoga, which is practiced with meditation, is another option for achieving inner peace.
The thoughtful use of supports like blankets and blocks is another aspect of yin yoga. This type of yoga can also be practiced after exercise as it has the potential to relax body joints.
Yin yoga promotes flexibility and muscular strength while increasing blood flow in the joints. One can hold a position for a couple of minutes, and with practice, for up to five minutes.
|Did you know that there is another type of yoga called Yang Yoga? Yin is cooler, more mellow, inward and downward. Yang, on the other hand, is energetic, warming, and upwardly directed. So, Yin Yoga is a slower style and Yang Yoga is a more intense form of practice.|
10. Prenatal Yoga
Prenatal yoga is aimed at women in all trimesters of pregnancy and seeks to lessen the aches and pains related to pregnancy. Since it strengthens the pelvic floor, focuses on breathing, and allows expecting women to bond with their growing children, prenatal yoga has been hailed as one of the finest forms of exercise for pregnant mothers. It also helps mothers get ready for labor and delivery.
Some of the prenatal yoga exercises can also be used in postnatal yoga. This method aids new mothers in losing some pregnancy-related weight.
Everybody can practice a distinct form of yoga based on their needs and comfort. With the help of a qualified yoga teacher training program at Rishikul Yogshala Rishikesh, you can learn the different types of yoga and choose one that best suits your needs.
Keep in mind that it takes time to experience the rewards of practicing yoga. It’s a commitment for the long haul. But once you start practicing regularly, you wouldn’t want to go back, that’s for sure!