Yoga Poses and Workouts

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Easing the Transition into Adulthood Yoga for Teens

Yoga practice in the teenage years is so much more than an exercise program. Yes, it provides an energy outlet and a way to build muscle and flexibility both important in their own right. But Yoga practice also provides you with an entry point for a healthful and balanced perspective on life and themselves that can serve for a lifetime. The following sections describe some benefits Yoga can offer teens. Integrating Yoga into the classroom The lessons of Yoga aren't confined to the Yoga mat or the body. The skills and understanding acquired through Yoga practice help children of all ages, including teens, approach life in a more grounded, centered, and emotionally intelligent way. When presented as an exploration, traditional Yoga themes such as the practice of ahimsa, or non-harming (see Chapter 20), can be translated into simple, practical distinctions, such as the difference between force and finesse. Take the simple exercise of untying a knot By using finesse rather than force, a...

Piece Define the Overall Goals of Your Yoga Practice

In selecting the yoga style or styles that will help you most, take the time to consider first what you are looking for in your yoga practice. Are you looking for an intense physical workout Are you looking for a relaxing yoga practice that will help you de-stress while strengthening and toning your body Are you more interested in pursuing yoga's therapeutic benefits either from a physical point of view in terms of dealing with particular physical challenges or issues or from an emotional and psychological point of view in terms of helping to get clarity on deeper core issues Are you a perfectionist who is looking for guidance in how to attain and hold the perfect yoga posture Are you more interested in yoga as an entire lifestyle, seeking direction in diet and instruction in meditation, or benefiting from yogic breathing techniques Are you perhaps more of a spiritual aspirant, not so concerned with the physical exercises of yoga, but looking to penetrate the deep wisdom of the...

Crafting Your Personalized Yoga Practice

Defining your yoga purpose Knowing your own style improves your yoga practice A yoga essay test Learning from your answers Ground rules for yoga practice Just as it's important to have a plan for your yoga practice, it's also important to have a purpose. If you don't really know why you want to practice yoga, you won't really know how to practice yoga. You're an individual, and you bring a unique mix of motivations, emotions, tendencies, biases, needs, wants, and traits to your practice. Being familiar with all of these will not only help you determine which postures will be best for you, but will also be a great help to your yoga commitment.

Tapping Into Yoga Props

Chapter 19 covers using props in your Yoga practice. Here we give you some resources to help acquaint you with the possibilities. The publication Yoga Journal is another excellent source for companies specializing in Yoga paraphernalia, such as mats, blocks, straps, outfits, and so on. Yoga Props, 3055 23rd Street, San Francisco, CA 94110 phone 888-856-YOGA (9642) or 415-285-YOGA (9642), fax 1-415-920-YOGA (9642) e-mail service yogaprops.net, Web site www.yogaprops.net .

Yoga for Your Current

Yoga has the tools and resources to help every man, whatever his age. When determining what yoga practice may be right for you at your particular age, you may want to take into consideration the physical condition of your body as well as your chronological age.11 Take stock of your own personal state of health and fitness. A man in his 20s who is in poor health or who is compromised physically may want to do a gentler yoga practice. A man in his 60s who has a vibrant body and mind may be able to do a more active yoga practice than some other men of his age. So when setting out a program of yoga for yourself, consider your biological, physical condition as well as your chronological age. Your yoga teacher should be able to help you in tailoring a yoga program to suit your particular needs whatever your age.

Yoga for Men in Their s and s

If you're in your 40s or 50s, you may be interested in taking your yoga practice to a new level by becoming even more precise in your practice and learning ways in which you can adapt your yoga practice to your particular physical condition and needs. Iyengar Yoga offers a particularly precise approach to yoga, including ways in which you can use props to modify poses for your particular needs, as well as helping prescribe practice programs for varying physical limitations. For more information, see the resources included in Chapter 4. As you advance on life's journey, you may also feel that you are looking for a less vigorous, more relaxed, yet still energizing approach to yoga. The Himalayan Institute (Chapter 2), Integral Yoga (Chapter 3), and Sivananda Yoga (Chapter 5) may be right for you you'll find suggested resources for each of these approaches to yoga in their respective chapters. In your 40s and 50s, you may also be interested in incorporating the yogic principles of...

Shorter Yoga Sequences

There are times when you may not have time to do the full yoga session outlined above. Possibly, your child may feel tired or weak, or does not want to practice yoga on a given day. Instead of completely avoiding the yoga practice, consider trying one of the shorter yoga sequences outlined below. These sequences, although abbreviated, are still very beneficial. The shorter sequences help your child stay supple and flexible. In addition, it is important to practice consistently to get the full benefit of yoga practice.

How should I approach my yoga practice

You should approach your yoga practice with a positive attitude. When you first start practicing, you should set goals that are within your reach and try not to push yourself too hard. Yoga is about doing your best and learning how to accept yourself for who you are. You may want to keep a yoga journal to record your growth as you practice yoga. You can include items in your yoga journal such as your thoughts, feelings and physical progress. You should practice yoga at a time that is most convenient for you. This can help make your practice a daily habit. It is better to practice for a short time each day than to practice for a longer time less frequently. Although yoga practices normally last from 45 to 90 minutes, you may find there are days when you do not have enough time to fit in a full practice. In this case, you should at least take a few minutes to practice. Even a few minutes of yoga can have lasting benefits.

Important Note Yoga Is Not a Substitute for Medical Treatment

The practice of yoga can complement your ongoing health maintenance program. However, it is not intended as a substitute for medical treatment. If you have any particular medical complaint or concern, or are unsure whether or not you should be practicing yoga because of a particular physical condition, consult your primary healthcare provider before embarking on a program of physical yoga exercise. If you experience any pain or discomfort during a yoga practice session, discontinue your practice and seek appropriate medical attention.

What time of day should I practice yoga

You can practice yoga at any time in the day when you feel you need to. Performing an active yoga practice in the morning can energize your mind and body, which can help set the tone for how you feel the rest of the day. You may want to perform a less active practice in the evening to help calm your mind and body after a long day and prepare yourself for sleep. Try to set a specific time each day, or as often in the week as possible, to practice yoga so your practice will become a habit.

The Basic Postures for Healthy Stress Free Living Preparing for Your Yoga Practice Session

In preparation for your yoga practice, find a place where you will be able to practice comfortably. You will need an uncluttered space where you will be able to stretch out and move about freely. If necessary, move any furniture or other objects that might intrude on your practice out of the way. You will be working on a smooth, flat, nonskid surface on the floor. Ideally, a bare wooden floor on which you can place a yoga sticky mat to help enhance balance and prevent skidding is best. (See Chapter 17 to find out more about yoga props and how you can obtain them.) For seated postures and those performed when lying on the floor, some type of cushioning a pillow, bolster, folded sticky mat, blanket, or towel will help to provide support and make your practice more comfortable. You will probably find it easier to perform standing poses by standing directly on a yoga mat or a bare wood floor rather than on a carpeted surface. This will give you a firmer footing for added balance and...

Ashtanga Yoga The Style

Ashtanga Yoga utilizes a prescribed series of sequential yoga postures. These postures, and the order in which they are performed, are especially designed to progressively heat, strengthen, and release the body. The series as a whole provides a complete workout for body, mind, and soul. Postures naturally complement one another to provide a precise balance of tightening and stretching. (For this reason, Ashtanga Yoga is sometimes referred to as the hard and the soft yoga.) All postures within the Ashtanga Yoga sequence must be performed in the precise order in which they are prescribed to obtain the full benefit of this practice. Therefore, a session of Ashtanga Yoga always follows exactly the same format. There are, however, as many as six series of Ashtanga Yoga practice available ranked by progressive difficulty beginning with the Primary Series and moving on to more advanced ones.5 The first few series of Ashtanga Yoga are generally taught in a group class, although some men...

Partnering Yoga with Pregnancy

Taking a gentle approach to Yoga during pregnancy can be just what the doctor ordered. It may be just what the midwife ordered as well because it helps you cultivate a sense of confidence in your own body and your ability to give birth. Of course, each woman should consult her physician about her own needs just to be certain she doesn't have any high-risk conditions that may require special precautions. We think that the best way to take full advantage of Yoga is to start your practice well before you're pregnant, or at least as soon as you receive the good news. Your Yoga practice can build a strong, healthy body and a stable mind, not only helping you conceive a child (by making you fit and relaxed) but also supporting you during the pregnancy, at birth, and afterwards. Many of our students continue their Yoga practice during their entire pregnancies, using the conservative principles that we outline in this book. One of the unsung benefits of Yoga may be conceiving a baby when...

Yoga and vegetarianism

It is assumed by many that vegetarianism is an integral part of yoga practice. This belief is only partially true, for while yoga views vegetarianism as the most beneficial system of nutrition, it does not for an instant insist that all practitioners of yoga become vegetarians. Vegetarianism does find a place in yoga only insofar as it is the preferred nutritional system whereby total body health can be obtained in preparation for the higher forms of yoga. Non-vegetarians are, however, heartily accepted as practitioners of yoga. Yoga advises but does not preach vegetarianism. One of the basic aims of yoga is to tune the body to a high degree of sensitivity and this is more easily achieved by abstaining from meat. Remember, yoga aims to bring about mental peace and tranquillity as well as

Prep Before Pep Ensuring a Fruitful Yoga Practice

Approaching Yoga with a healthy attitude Leaving the competition behind Translating your own mind-body language Doing it your way without regret M n Yoga, what you do and how you do it are equally important, and both mind and body contribute to your actions. Yoga respects the fact that you aren't merely a physical body but a psychophysical body-mind. Full mental participation in even the simplest of physical exercise enables you to tap into your deeper potential as a human being. This chapter is about cultivating the right attitude toward your Yoga practice, which is the best preparation for success in Yoga. We encourage you to find your own pace without pushing yourself and risking injury, and to leave your competitive spirit to other endeavors. We also emphasize function over form, proposing that a modified version of the ideal form of a posture that suits your needs is the right form for you. Yoga is a creative endeavor that asks you to call upon the powers of your own mind as you...

Chapter Yoga for the Phases of a Mans Life

For an interesting article profiling individual practitioners of yoga at different ages, see Donna Raskin, As Time Goes By, Yoga Journal, December 2001. 4. Patricia Leigh Brown, Latest Way to Cut Grade School Stress Yoga, The New York Times, March 24, 2002. 5. Adam Skolnick, Seeds of Change Yoga for Troubled Youth available online at www.yimag.org, 2000. 6. Quoted in Georg Feuerstein, trans. and ed., Teachings of Yoga (Boston Shambhala, 1997), 4. 10. For a comprehensive presentation of yoga for mature practitioners, including designing a yoga practice, see Suza Francina, The New Yoga for People Over 50 (Deerfield Beach, Fla. Health Communications, 1997).

Partner Assisted Yoga Getting Started

To begin your journey in partnered yoga, try practicing some of the yoga postures presented in A Complete Yoga Practice Session for Men while assisting or being assisted by a partner. This will help to give you a full-body yoga workout and also help you to see how the principles of Partner Assisted Yoga are put into action. The following are representative examples of how you can incorporate the principles of Partner Assisted Yoga into the practice of some basic yoga asanas. Once you see how you can assist, or be assisted by, a partner, you can continue on your own to invent and experiment with your own variations of assisted partnering. You can also check out the Website given at the end of this chapter for further information on suggestions for partnering in specific asanas.

Yoga Sessions for the Time You Have

Here are some great ideas for routines to begin your yoga practice, based on the yoga classes that Joan teaches to her students. Whether you need a relaxing five-minute break in the middle of the workday, or an invigorating full-hour session at home to get you energized, toned, and ready for anything, Joan has suggestions for you. Each sequence of yoga postures helps you focus on something specific. For example, one sequence can hone in on improving your physical sense of balance, while another can help you release anger and negative feelings. Other examples include toning internal organs, building upper body strength, and increasing lung capacity. You'll want to choose the routine that's right for you. And remember, it's not important how much yoga you do, but that you keep practicing, doing as much as you can whenever you can. Yoga moves at your pace, in the time you have Every time you practice yoga, try to view it as the first time. Study what your body is doing, and don't take...

White Lotus Yoga Flowing Power Yoga

White Lotus Yoga is a synthesis of the major styles and traditions of yoga and the expression of many years of teaching by Tracey Rich and Ganga White, who have studied and taught yoga extensively around the world for more than 36 years. White Lotus Yoga combines the precision of Iyengar Yoga (see Chapter 4), the wisdom of classical yoga, and the flowing sequences and special breathing practices of both Ashtanga Yoga (see Chapter 6) and Vinyasa Yoga with White's own experience with thousands of students. The approach emphasizes cycling one's practice by alternating different styles of yoga, tuning one's yoga practice to one's own needs, and is taught in a non-dogmatic, open-minded manner. White Lotus Yoga is taught and practiced at the White Lotus Foundation, a residential mountain retreat center overlooking Santa Barbara, California. Teacher training and certification is offered in 16-day intensive residential retreats that cover asana practice, pranayama, yoga philosophy, teacher...

You havent studied yoga

Should you have studied yoga already in order to study yoga with weights The short answer is It isn't necessary. Yoga with weights is user-friendly, meaning it isn't intimidating, and you don't need a background in yoga. The door is always open. Anyone who's interested is welcome. Yogis sometimes say, You're as young as your yoga practice. The saying refers to yoga's rejuvenating qualities and to the fact that practicing yoga is akin to being a newborn, in that you discover anew how to move your body when you practice yoga. Like a baby learning to lift his or her head or roll over, yoga students feel their way into new, more liberating body motions and positions as they practice yoga. Yoga is well known for making people look and feel younger. To some degree, yoga slows down the aging process. Bone mass develops, and you feel more vital and energetic. Of course, if you've already studied yoga, studying yoga with weights is that much easier because the language and the concepts aren't...

Karma yoga according to the Bhagavad Gita

Though we have already given a number of quotations from the Bhagavad Gita, we feel it is worthwhile giving a few more selected verses. This may seem a little repetitive, but it will help you to further grasp the essence of karma yoga practice. Equanmity Do your action, oh Arjuna, with the feeling and attitude of yoga. Abandon attachment and be balanced in success and failure. Equanimity of mind is yoga. (2 48)

Yoga Promotes Whole Body Fitness

Asanas (pronounced AH-sah-nahs) are the postures, or exercises, of yoga designed to help you master control of your body. Asanas are also meant to facilitate meditation. Pranayama (PRAH-nah-YAH-mah) are breathing exercises designed to help you master control of your breath. Asanas (pronounced AH-sah-nahs) are the postures, or exercises, of yoga designed to help you master control of your body. Asanas are also meant to facilitate meditation. Pranayama (PRAH-nah-YAH-mah) are breathing exercises designed to help you master control of your breath. to the gym three times a week, or it may mean getting up to look for the remote control. Either way, yoga is perfect for you Because yoga combines so many different fitness elements and is so easily tailored to the individual, it can be practiced with great benefit at the beginner level as well as at the most advanced level. Whether you're a beginning or advanced practitioner, yoga will slowly, gently, and easily open up your body. You'll feel...

Yoga for Older Adults

According to the National Institute on Aging (www.nia.nih.gov), 'Too old' and 'too frail' are not, in and of themselves, reasons to prohibit physical activity. In fact, there aren't very many health reasons to keep older adults from becoming more active. Rather, many chronic conditions are actually a result of not exercising. As a form of exercise, Yoga has many benefits that are specific to seniors. Improved balance and flexibility reduce the risk for (and fear of) injury and increase mobility. Yoga also improves circulation and your ability to sleep, and adding even light weights to the postures increases bone density and lowers the risk of fracture. Plus, group practice promotes social interaction and sense of connectedness. Seniors interested in Yoga should first check with their physicians. After you get the green light, seek out a class that focuses on your age group both for the social benefits and to be guided by a teacher who is knowledgeable about adapting postures to your...

Ananda Yoga for Higher Awareness

Ananda Yoga for Higher Awareness (also known simply as Ananda Yoga) is an approach to yoga practice developed by J. Donald Walters (Swami Kriyananda), a direct disciple of Paramahansa Yogananda, author of the spiritual classic, Autobiography of a Yogi. Walters founded The Expanding Light Retreat (formerly the Ananda Retreat Center) in Nevada City, California, where Ananda Yoga is taught today. Ananda Yoga is a classical style of hatha yoga that uses asanas and pranayama to awaken, experience, and control the subtle energies within oneself, especially the energies of the chakras. Its object is to use those energies to harmonize body, mind, and emotions, and, above all, to attune oneself with higher levels of awareness. Two unique features of Ananda Yoga are (1) special Energization Exercises to recharge the body with energy and (2) the practice of silent affirmations while in the poses to consciously direct the subtle energies and raise one's level of awareness. Ananda Yoga is a...

Kriya Yoga Preparation and Rules

Because kriya yoga has always been a secret technique, it has always been practised under the close guidance of an expert. In this book mere is no personal guide. All the guidance is given in these pages, therefore it is essential that you carefully follow the rules and preparations as closely as possible. Try to eat vegetarian food that is fresh, clean and easily digestible, also tiy to eat in moderation. Kriya yoga is a system of purifying the whole mind-body. If there is excessive impurity in your body then there will be a drastic purging process. Too much food will make it difficult to do the practices properly, especially breathing practices, and kriyas which involve uddiyana bandha etc. You must use your own discrimination in choosing the food you eat. Remember all full-time kriya yoga courses in this ashram are accompanied by compulsory Dhyana is a sattwic state it cannot take place in a tamasic state of mind and body. It is therefore essential to adjust one's dietary habits so...

The Origins of Iyengar Yoga

While Iyengar Yoga is based on the time-honored traditions of yoga practice, the specific way in which it approaches the practice and teaching of yoga is the result of Iyengar's lifetime of practice, observation, and teaching of yoga. Iyengar was born in 1918 in South India. As a boy, he experienced a number of health complaints, which eventually sent him (in 1934) to seek instruction in yoga. His teacher was Krishnamacharya, Iyengar's brother-in-law and one of the most celebrated teachers of yoga in India at the time. Krishnamacharya, who was head of the Yoga Institute at the Royal Palace of Mysore, was also teacher to several other noted yoga masters of this century, including his own son, T.K.V. Desikachar, who has been very influential in the West through the work of his American student, Gary Kraftsow, who teaches Viniyoga (page 107) and K. Pattabhi Jois, who developed Ashtanga Yoga (page 67), popularized as Power Yoga. Iyengar began to teach yoga in 1936. Interestingly enough,...

Motivating children with Autism Spectrum Disorders to practice yoga

As parents of a child with an ASD, we were willing to try anything we could to make our son's life better. When we first introduced the idea of yoga to our son, he balked. He refused to listen to our plans about implementing a yoga practice for him. He also did not want to hear about the positive benefits of yoga. Our son did not even want to hear the word yoga. Even though we were convinced that yoga would help our son with the symptoms of Asperger Syndrome, we could not motivate him to try even one pose with us. Our son thought it seemed like too much work. He viewed yoga as exercise and he knew that he was not athletic. He also thought the whole idea of yoga and paying attention to his breathing was weird. Yoga seemed to be yet one more thing that he had to do. He also believed that boys and men did not practice yoga and that if he practiced yoga he would be more different than other kids. We realized that we needed to begin yoga very slowly with our son. We started with just one...

Yoga for Men in Their s and Beyond

If you're in your 60s or beyond, you may be interested in easy approaches to yoga that help keep the joints mobile and the circulation steady. The following book contains a series of joint and gland exercises that are easy to perform Rudolph Ballentine, M.D., editor, Joints and Glands Exercises As Taught by Sri Swami RRama of the Himalayas (Himalayan Institute Press, 1977). This is an excellent overview of a series of easy-to-perform yoga exercises that can be particularly helpful to seniors. As you progress in your senior years, you may find that your interest in the spiritual aspects of yoga deepens even more. The following books on the spiritual foundations of yoga might be of particular interest Bernard Bouanchaud (Rosemary Desneux, trans.) The Essence of Yoga Reflections on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. (Rudra Press, 1997). This book uses the time-honored tradition of teaching the foundational principles of yoga by presenting in translation and then commenting upon the terse...

Iyengar Yoga The Style

Iyengar Yoga is most frequently taught in a class setting, although, as in most styles of yoga, private instruction with a teacher is generally widely available. Classes typically last from 60 to 90 minutes. They are typically ranked by level of difficulty and the background of the students. During an Iyengar Yoga class, the teacher pays great attention to instructing students as specifically as possible in how to perform each asana. This may entail the instructor's demonstrating the proper way to execute the asana first, then having the students follow. Once the students have performed the asana a first time, the instructor might then demonstrate the pose again, pointing out a deeper subtlety and specificity of the pose. Students then repeat the asana. This process may continue for several rounds until the students become even more precise in their repetition of the asana. Often, the teacher will focus on just one aspect of an asana in order to bring full awareness to its execution....

Yoga Mind Power Go with the Flow

V Reaching the yoga zone of flow V Flow in an actual yoga pose Life is not a war, it's not a contest, and it's not a race. Life is being. Yoga helps you see this truth and live it each moment. The need to name, label, evaluate, and analyze everything we come into contact with can be debilitating to the spirit. Yoga teaches you to look without classifying, to listen without judging, to feel without losing control, to learn without assuming you already know simply, to be. Everything is subjective. Realizing this will help bring peace to your busily categorizing mind and help you see the truth in difficult situations, people, and even yourself. Labels make perception seem easy, but perception isn't easy, so banish the labels and look harder and closer at yourself and the world. Let yoga show you how. Enter yoga In a fight-or-flight world, yoga is like a daily trip to the spa. Not only will it relax you and calm your mind, it can fine-tune the fight-or-flight response. With yoga, you...

Partner Yoga Getting Started

In Partner Yoga, you and your partner perform yoga postures together, so that you both obtain the benefits of yoga asanas at the same time. In many common Partner Yoga positions, both partners perform the same posture at the same time. Because both partners are performing yoga asanas at the same time, the positioning and body mechanics of each partner can be more complex than in Partner Assisted Yoga. For this reason, it can be helpful to do Partner Yoga under the guidance of a teacher, who can help both partners enter into the proper positions for each yoga pose. The following postures can serve as an indication of the many yoga postures that you can enjoy with a friend, mate, or loved one in Partner Yoga.

Tapping Into Your Yoga Power Source

So how does all this centering and concentration get you in shape Because your mind and your body are so intricately connected, a centered mind with the power of concentration works directly on the body, allowing each yoga posture to accomplish the maximum possible benefit. Don't be misled into thinking you can ignore the mental parts of yoga because you aren't in it for the enlightenment. Perhaps getting in shape is priority one for you. That's great But the key to yoga's fitness power is in the synthesis of everything you are your body, your mind, your spirit each part working together to make the whole stronger, healthier, and more alive. Remember, a healthy body means more than just a strong body. As any doctor will tell you, a positive attitude toward life is central to the body's natural healing powers. Yoga stimulates your body mind power source, channeling your positive mental energy into your physical workout, and vice versa.

Yoga nidra as a meditative technique

We have tended to emphasize use of yoga nidra as a relaxation technique. We have also suggested that yoga nidra be utilized, if necessary, as a method of inducing sleep. Possibly this may give the impression that yoga nidra is a preliminary technique for beginners but actually yoga nidra, if practised correctly, can lead directly to meditation. Yoga nidra is, in fact, a powerful meditative technique. All meditative techniques are intended to induce pratyahara (sense withdrawal) as a preliminary to dharana (concentration). Yoga nidra does this very systematically in fact, it is probably the most systematic of all meditative techniques. First of all the karmendriyas (organs of action) are put out of action hands, feet, etc. Then most of thejnanendriyas (organs of sense knowledge) are put out of action that is sight, taste and so on are blocked, leaving only perception of hearing and touch. Stimulation of the brain is drastically reduced. The field of perception and awareness is narrowed...

Relaxation and yoga nidra

In yoga, relaxation is clearly defined as a state in which there is freedom from physical, emotional and mental tension. Practices such as yoga nidra are designed to systematically soothe away tensions at all these three levels. Yoga nidra induces deep relaxation of the whole physical body. The muscles, nerves, Next, yoga nidra gradually releases emotional tensions that are embedded in the mind. This does not happen overnight, but takes time and regular practice of yoga nidra combined with other forms of yoga. It releases fears, anger, jealousy and other emotions that cause tension. All the emotions are brought to the surface, to conscious perception, and then discarded. They seem to evaporate, cease to cause inner turmoil and cease to have negative influences in one's life. The more that they are removed, the more one relaxes, not only during yoga nidra practice, but in everyday life. Yoga nidra tackles mental tension, which can be regarded as those aspects of the mind that are based...

Yoga Nidra Deep Relaxation

Many yoga classes conclude with what is known as yoga nidra, which literally means yoga sleep. Yoga nidra is more commonly known as Deep Relaxation, or when performed at the end of a yoga session, Final Relaxation. This deeply calming experience can help you to integrate the benefits achieved during your yoga session, as well as let go of any areas where you may still be holding tension whether that tension be physical, mental, emotional, or even spiritual. Nearly every yoga class concludes with a period of deep relaxation. Many yoga teachers believe that this is the most important part of a yoga practice. It provides the opportunity not only to integrate the benefits of your yoga session, but also to tune in to yourself a priceless benefit for the typical man suffering from the pressures of time constraints and societal demands. There are many powerful ways of preparing for Deep Relaxation. The relaxation exercise that follows was inspired by my recollection of one very deep and...

Willow Street Yoga Center

Suzie Hurley, E-RYT 500, 6930 carroll ave., Takoma park, MD, 20912 p 301-270-8038 F 301-270-8045 yoga willowstreetyoga.com willowstreetyoga.com With over 130 weekly classes in two locations, WSYC is the largest Anusara yoga center in the country. WSYC is known for excellence in instruction and a welcoming, vibrant community. Highly-trained teachers offer yoga classes for all levels and ages, including therapeutic yoga, yoga for pregnancy and yoga for athletes Yoga Nidra and meditation teacher training. SUSQUEHANNA YOGA & MEDiTATiON CENTER Iyengar-certified teachers. Day, weekend and evening classes workshops international retreats apprenticeship program. Yoga Alliance-registered. Syoga is the home of the Tibetan Meditation Center of Baltimore.

Raja Yoga Know Your Mind Know the Universe

Raja Yoga, also known as The Royal Path, emphasizes control of the intellect to attain enlightenment. Meditation, concentration, and breath control are paramount in Raja Yoga, the yoga of the mind. Hatha and Raja Yoga work well together Hatha Yoga is often considered a stepping stone to Raja Yoga, because after control of the body is mastered, control of the mind comes more easily. If you're ill, whether you have a cold, chronic pain, or something more serious, Hatha Yoga postures, meditation, and the practice of mindfulness can be of

The Origins of Sivananda Yoga

Sivananda Yoga represents Swami Vishnu-devananda's practical implementation of raja yoga and vedanta philosophy. Swami Vishnu-devananda was a student of Swami Sivananda (1887 1963), for whom this approach to yoga is named and upon whose teachings it is based. Born in Pattamadai, Tamil Nadu, South India, Swami Sivananda served many years as a medical doctor before devoting himself exclusively to the practice and teaching of yoga. His approach to yoga represents a synthesis of classic yoga teachings, integrating the principles of the four main yoga traditions of India bhakti yoga, jnana yoga, karma yoga, and raja yoga (see Chapter 1). Author of more than 300 books, Swami Sivananda founded the Divine Life Society and established the Sivananda Ashram in Rishikesh, North India. Swami Vishnu-devananda, who was one of Swami Sivananda's most fervent and adept students, was born in Kerala, South India. Swami Sivananda sent this young prot g to North America in 1957 with a 10 rupee note and the...

Winning Friends by Practice of Yoga

Win friends and influence people This Dale Carnagie principle is but a leaf out of the ancient Indian volume on psycho-spiritual science. Practice Yoga the entire world will worship you. You will unconsciously attract to yourself every living being even gods will be at your beck and call. Even among wild beasts and bloody brutes you will win friends. Serve all love all. Unfold your inner powers through the practice of Raja Yoga, through the control and conquest of thought power. Through the practice of Yoga, you can make the whole humanity and all living beings members of your own family. Through the practice of Yoga you can overcome all difficulties and can eradicate all weaknesses. Through the practice of Yoga pain can be transmuted into bliss, death into immortality, sorrow into joy, failure into success and sickness into perfect health. Therefore, practice Yoga diligently.

Karma yoga and other paths of yoga

Karma yoga should not be divorced from other forms of yoga. Other forms of yoga should be supplemented by karma yoga, and also karma yoga should not be practised in isolation it too should be supplemented by other types of yoga. All the different yogic paths mutually reinforce each other. For example, karma yoga done with even moderate success will help one to gain more success in meditational practices. Improved concentration through karma yoga will help lead one to real meditational experience. In turn meaningful and more profound meditational experiences from raja yoga, kriya yoga, etc. will help one to more successfully practise karma yoga. It is a cyclic process, each helping the other. While meditational techniques help to highlight inner problems, both mental and emotional, karma yoga also helps to bring these problems out into the open and finally exhaust them. Asanas and pranayama not only help improve meditational techniques, they also help one to perform karma yoga more...

Karma yoga as a means to meditation

Karma yoga can lead to exactly the same experiences as other forms of yoga. There is no doubt about this. But it is difficult for most people to appreciate this point, for other paths of yoga such as raja yoga, seem more 'yogic'. There is a tendency to think that work cannot possibly be yoga, and of course mere work is not yoga. Karma yoga implies something far greater and more profound than work. It implies selfless, concentrated actions, with awareness. Karma yoga is an important technique for growth and progress along the spiritual path. It helps to bring peace and equanimity into one's life. In itself, it leads directly to higher awareness and knowledge, even though these experiences bear little relation to the actual work being carried out. It is the inner experience that is important, and this is something that cannot be conveyed by words. Swami Satyananda, like his guru Swami Sivananda, affirms and emphasizes the importance of karma yoga in order to know the experience...

The Structure of Yoga

There are many different paths of yoga. In fact, in the ashram library there is one Hindi book listing well over a hundred different types. However, most of these separate paths are only slight variations of a few basic forms of yoga practices. These numerous variations arise from modifications designed to suit the temperaments and beliefs of everyone, and in a sense we can say that there is a different path of yoga for each individual, for each person has a unique personality. However, our personalities are more notable for their similarities than differences, as we are all composed of a few basic characteristics such as emotion, tendency to activity, etc. Because of these common aspects, yoga can be separated into a few paths which cater for each of these facets of personality. It is these fundamental paths that we want to briefly discuss in this topic. Hie various paths of yoga lead to the same point or source. They are often compared to different rivers which flow into the sea. At...

The Theory Underlying Ashtanga Yoga

Despite the possible apocryphal nature of its origins, many practitioners of Ashtanga Yoga believe that Jois's approach represents the most complete and original system of yoga known. If it is indeed authentic, the manuscript of the Yoga Korunta is believed to be at least 1,500 years old, and the practices it describes are believed to be perhaps 5,000 years old. Some people even believe that Ashtanga Yoga embodies the original classical practice of yoga as referenced by Patanjali in his famous Yoga Sutras. Ashtanga Yoga derives its name from the fact that practitioners believe it embodies all eight limbs of raja yoga, or the royal path to liberation. These limbs, which are presented in detail in Chapter 1, address a full spectrum of yoga principles, including right conduct, right action, physical movement, breathing, and the more abstract realms of sense withdrawal, contemplation, meditation, and ecstatic union with the absolute. In addition to emphasizing learning and repeating a...

Hatha Yoga Know Your Body Know Your Mind

As we've mentioned before, Hatha Yoga works under the assumption that supreme control over the body, or the physical self, is one path to enlightenment. Hatha Yoga is a sort of spiritual fitness plan in which balance is a key. Attention to the physical is foremost in Hatha Yoga this particular type of yoga involves cleansing rituals and breathing exercises designed to manipulate the body's energy through breath control, in addition to the postures or exercises for which Hatha Yoga is commonly known.

Getting The Scoop on the Prominent Styles of Hatha Yoga

In its voyage to modernity, Yoga has undergone many transformations. One of them was Hatha Yoga, which emerged around 1100 AD. The most significant adaptations, however, were made during the past several decades, particularly to serve the needs or wants of Western students. Of the many styles of Hatha Yoga available today, the following are the best known Iyengar Yoga, which is the most widely recognized approach to Hatha Yoga, was created by B. K. S. Iyengar, the brother in-law of the famous T.S. Krishnamacharya (1888-1989) and uncle of T.K.V. Desikachar. This style is characterized by precision performance and the aid of numerous props. Iyengar has trained thousands of teachers, many of whom are in the United States. His Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute, founded in 1974 and dedicated to his late wife Ramamani, is located in Pune, India. Viniyoga (pronounced vee-nee yoh-gah) is the approach first developed by Shri Krishnamacharya and continued with his son T.K.V. Desikachar....

The deeper significance of hatha yoga

Hatha yoga is the best known of the yogic paths because it is the yoga that deals directly with the physical body. It is therefore a path that everyone can relate to and see an obvious reason for practising, but this is, once again, a gross oversimplification. Hatha yoga has far more implications than physical fitness alone. Hatha is composed of the two syllables ha and tha. The syllable ha means 'the sun' and tha means 'the moon'. Therefore, hatha yoga is concerned with attaining harmony between the sun and moon aspects of our being. The moon implies ida nadi which is often called the chandra nadi (chandra - moon). The sun represents the pingala nadi, which is often called the surya nadi (surya - sun). Hatha yoga is intimately concerned with everything that we have so far discussed in this topic - the balance between ida and pingala. Remember that ida and pingala have many levels of meaning as we have tried to show under previous headings. Hatha yoga is concerned with balancing the...

Partners in Yoga Breath and Postural Movement

In Hatha Yoga, breathing is just as important as the postures, which we describe in Part II. How you breathe when you're moving into, holding, or moving out of any given posture can greatly increase the efficiency and the benefits of your practice. Think of the breath as mileage plus. The more you use breathing consciously, the more mileage you gain for your health and longevity. Here are some basic guidelines

Urban Yoga Yoga Joins the Gym Workout

Urban Yoga is an approach to yoga that you may see offered in a class setting by your local gym or yoga studio. This nomenclature for a style of yoga first started to appear around the beginning of the 1980s, and has become even more widespread since then. While there is not necessarily one particular style of Urban Yoga, in general Urban Yoga refers to an eclectic blend of traditional hatha yoga postures combined with other activities that you may find offered in a gym setting. This may include aerobics choreographed to music in a high-energy spin-off. Another style may incorporate yoga practices with body-strengthening exercises. A more relaxing approach may emphasize breathing techniques, stretching exercises, and restorative poses to complement a more traditional weightlifting workout. Whatever the ingredients, Urban Yoga can appeal to men who want to de-stress by combining the traditional benefits of hatha yoga with a gym-environment workout. If you see a class in Urban Yoga...

Hidden Language of Hatha Yoga Yoga as Self Exploration and Reflection

Hidden Language of Hatha Yoga is a name given to the approach to yoga practiced by Swami Radha (1911-1995). Born in Germany, Swami Radha traveled to India, where she studied yoga under the guidance of Sri Swami Sivananda, one of the most seminal teachers of yoga in this century. She was the first Western woman to be initiated as a swami. Swami Radha taught yoga throughout the world. Her approach to yoga explores the emotional, psychological, and symbolic aspects of yoga postures and practice in what she referred to as the hidden language approach to yoga. Her work is preserved through the many books on yoga she authored and through the centers and organizations she established. These include the Yasodhara Ashram in Canada, the Association for the Development of Human Potential in the United States, and numerous urban teaching centers, called Radha Yoga Centers, in North America and England. For further information on Swami Radha and her style of yoga, including a free catalog, contact...

Considering Your Options The Eight Main Branches of Yoga

When you take a bird's-eye view of the Yoga tradition, you see a dozen major strands of development, each with its own subdivisions. Picture Yoga as a giant tree with eight branches each branch has its own unique character, but each is also part of the same tree. With so many different paths, you're sure to find one that's right for your personality, lifestyle, and goals. In this book we focus on Hatha Yoga, the most popular branch of Yoga, but we avoid the common mistake of reducing it to mere physical fitness training. Thus, we also talk about meditation and the spiritual aspects of Yoga. Here are the seven principal branches of Yoga, arranged alphabetically Bhakti (bhuk-tee) Yoga The Yoga of devotion Hatha (haht-ha) Yoga The Yoga of physical discipline Jnana (gyah-nah) Yoga The Yoga of wisdom Karma (kahr-mah) Yoga The Yoga of self-transcending action Mantra (mahn-trah) Yoga The Yoga of potent sound Raja (rah-jah) Yoga The Royal Yoga Tantra (tahn-trah) Yoga (including Laya Yoga and...

What Is Integral Yoga

Integral Yoga, as its name implies, is a system of yoga that aims to integrate body, mind, and spirit. The system of Integral Yoga was brought to the West from India by Sri Swami Satchidananda. This system emphasizes the practices of hatha yoga, pranayama, and meditation as the way to develop physical and mental stillness in order to unlock inner truth. Integral Yoga is practiced and taught at the Integral Yoga Institute, which was founded by Sri Swami Satchidananda and has branches throughout the United States and the rest of the world. Integral Yoga hatha classes are offered by individual teachers, by the Integral Yoga Institutes and Integral Yoga Teaching Centers, as well as at Integral Yoga headquarters at Satchidananda Ashram-Yogaville, which is located in Buckingham, near Charlottesville, Virginia.

Brief Overview of the History of Yoga

The exact date and circumstances of the origin of yoga are unknown. This is because the practice of yoga is so ancient that it is believed to predate the written texts and visual images that depict it. Most scholars trace the origins of yoga to at least 5,000 years ago. Yoga is believed to have originated through the insights and experiments of ancient seekers of wisdom, mystics, and visionaries on the Indian subcontinent. Through intense inner searching, they developed practices that were passed down orally and eventually recorded in a body of text that is considered sacred in the Hindu and other spiritual traditions. The earliest known writings on yoga are contained in the Vedas (Sanskrit for knowledges), the most ancient extant Hindu texts. The oldest of these, the Rig-Veda (Knowledge of Praise), believed by some scholars to date as far back as 3000 b.c.e., contains plentiful references to yoga.2 Other ancient sacred Hindu writings, including the Upanishads (to sit down close to...

Fast Path In Your Face Yoga

In the yogic scriptures it is said that Kundalini yoga is 16 times more powerful than Hatha yoga. On the one hand, that seems to be good news. The Catch 22 is-- How do we make such quick progress We are confronted with our issues 16 times faster Kundalini yoga is In your face yoga. Spirituality can be a rough ride. A lot of things get better and some things certainly seem to get worse No spiritual journey is a free lunch. We are obliged to deal with our issues in order to set ourselves free.

The Origins of Integral Yoga

The founding and inspirational force behind Integral Yoga is Sri Swami Satchidananda. Born in South India, Sri Swami Satchidananda studied yoga under the guidance of several of the most renowned teachers of yoga in the 20th century, including Sri Ramana Maharashi, Sri Aurobindo, and, most especially, Sri Swami Sivananda. Sri Swami Sivananda of the city of Rishikesh in the Himalayas, who taught a synthesis of many different types of yoga, was Sri Swami Satchidananda's spiritual master. Sri Swami Sivananda was one of the most influential teachers of yoga in the 20th century. He counted among his students Sri Swami Satchidananda, as well as Sri Swami Chidananda, Sri Swami Jyotirmayananda, and Sri Swami Vishnu-devananda, who is responsible for the development of Sivananda Yoga (see Chapter 5). Sri Swami Satchidananda traveled and taught extensively throughout Southeast Asia and Europe, and there are now yoga teachers and centers devoted to him throughout the world. He was invited to visit...

The Discipline of Yoga

As the various methods for the awakening of kundalini, described in Hatha-Yoga manuals or prescribed in other ancient texts, are already mentioned in detail in several modern books, it is not necessary here to enter into a recapitulation of the techniques already explained in other writings. A few words are, however, necessary to bring out the fact that all the practices and exercises described are of a type that one would expect of a system, designed for the excitation of a psychosomatic mechanism in the body, intimately connected with the reproductive region at the base of the spine and the cerebral hemispheres in the head. The ancient writers on the subject have made no secret of this close relationship between the two poles of the mechanism, and even the purest and the most saintly of them have described the interaction of the two in plain terms without any effort at ambiguity. In assessing the value of the ancient techniques it is necessary to bear in mind that they were designed...

The Theory Underlying Kripalu Yoga

Kripalu Yoga is based on the yogic belief that body, mind, and spirit are connected by the flow of an intelligent life force called prana. Attuning to this energy not only enhances health, but it also stimulates psychological growth and spiritual awakening. Kripalu Yoga utilizes a wide variety of techniques, including asana practice, meditation, Kripalu (pronounced Krih-PAH-loo) means being compassionate in Sanskrit. Kripalu Yoga is a contemporary, integrative approach to yoga that synthesizes traditional Eastern yoga practices with the unique needs of contemporary men living active lifestyles. It also integrates Western psychological insights into the practice of yoga. Kripalu Yoga aims to help each individual discover and release physical, mental, and emotional blockages. Kripalu Yoga was developed as a collaborative effort of the members of the Kripalu Center, a spiritual fellowship community located in Lenox, Massachusetts. The Kripalu Center was originally founded by followers of...

The Origins of Kundalini Yoga

The origins of kundalini yoga are obscure. Adding to the mystique surrounding kundalini yoga is that its practice has often been shrouded in secrecy, traditionally reserved for mystics and occult practitioners. However, references to the tremendous power associated with kundalini-shakti date back to some of the earliest known texts on yoga. The kundalini represents a somewhat mysterious yet enormously powerful energy that is present both within the universe and within each individual. It is conceived of as the divine feminine principle upon which the universe is founded. Through the practice of kundalini yoga, the adept releases this energy so that it might rise up through the spine and be connected with the masculine energy, shiva (benevolent) that is believed to reside at the crown of the head. The unification of the masculine and feminine energies in the body results in the highest union of yoga, leading to enlightenment, dissolution of the self, and realization of unbound bliss....

Discover Hatha Yoga

Shortly after visiting the second doctor, I discovered an early morning television program on Yoga by Richard Hittleman. Although I had been reading Buddhist and Hindu literature for a few years, this was my first contact with Hatha Yoga. Hittleman demonstrated various simple postures (asanas) and described the procedures for entering, holding, and emerging from each asana. These procedures are generally the same for each pose, and may be illustrated with a simple movement, raising the arms above the head. About 6 months after I started practicing Yoga, my father, who was then 65, complained to me of a neck ailment. Whenever he sat in one position reading a book, watching TV, driving a car his neck froze up on him. It was excruciatingly painful when, after sitting still for a few minutes, he turned his head. His doctor's diagnosis was no more helpful to him than mine had been to me He was old he had to resign himself. When my dad told me of his trouble, I suspected that Yoga would...

The yoga sutras of patanjali

Part One In A Series The Evolution Of Yoga Chances are you're sitting in a coffee shop, sipping hot chai, and reading a yoga magazine. You may have just finished your favorite yoga class, and you feel really good. A great workout it may have been, and yet deep inside you know that there must be more to yoga than alignment, anatomy, and many comments about being grounded, centered and balanced. And you're right. Yoga is much, much more. The postures are but one component of a complex system of spiritual psychology, a practical philosophy whose source is India's 5000-year-old jewel of collected knowledge, the Vedas. Yoga is one of these six formal philosophies. The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali is the darsana of yoga. Although there are other important works on yoga, including the Bhagavad-Gita, the Hatha Yoga Pradipika, and Yoga Rahasya, the complete philosophy is understood to be embodied by Patanjali's Yoga Sutras. To understand Yoga, therefore, one must study its Sutras. There is an...

Kundalini Yoga in the West

Before Yogi Bhajan came to the West in 1969, Kundalini yoga was a secret science taught only to a few selected students. The significance of the open sharing of this technology is monumental and revolutionary. For the first time in known history, the democratization of spirituality is possible. Everyone can wake up and stay awake. And we can get a yoga set and meditation to do so over the Internet Most of what was available when I discovered Kundalini yoga in 1976 was in the form of hand written notes. I kept thinking someone else was going to put them all together. However, destiny decided that I would be blessed with an enthusiastic student who would help me assemble four manuals from the early notes. These four books are still classics and are available on our website http www.yogatech.com The first and the most popular worldwide is Transitions to a Heart-Centered World. The next was Relax and Renew, followed by Sexuality and Spirituality. Introduction to Kundalini Yoga adds some...

Lets Get Spiritual Growing with the Tree of Yoga

This section begins with a mini history lesson. Yoga has been around for thousands of years, and in all that time, it has branched into various types, from studious Jnana Yoga to active Karma Yoga to mystical Kundalini Yoga. Learn about how yoga came to the West and why our culture is coming to a point in its evolution where yoga will become a powerful and pertinent tool. Next we introduce you to yoga's comprehensive guidelines for living. Far from hard-and-fast commandments, yoga's yamas (abstinences) and niyamas (observances) point the way along the path that will most enhance your yoga journey. Patanjali's Eightfold Path (of which the abstinences and observances are the first two aspects) is laid out in an easy-to-follow format, explaining the eight important facets of a yogi's life from keeping the body fit to mastering detachment, concentration, and meditation. Controlling the breath keeps body and mind operating at peak efficiency. In Chapter 7, Can You Breathe we explain the...

The Practice of Kundalini Yoga

We can see from the above outline that the intention of Kundalini Yoga is to purify and remove the blockages in the centers throughout the body's field and in the process to gradually build the upward streaming polarity of the chemical-electromagnetic field centered in the heart to the point where there is a balance of stillness that results in the steady withdrawal of attention and attachment to the tamasic and rajasic tendencies and accumulation of this energy in the pure satvic field, such that when there is enough chemical electric pressure of vitalized sexual fluid (prana) in the field, the Kundalini under pressure will awaken, rising to the

The Goal of Kundalini Yoga

The goal of Kundalini yoga and all spiritual technologies is to create a conscious connection with the Divine. Yoga means union. The union is between our physical reality and god- consciousness, universal energies and our soul. The practice of Kundalini yoga removes our blocks and resistances, raises our energy to higher frequencies and opens our awareness to expanded realities. If we train ourselves to focus our attention on our goal of union, we can facilitate our transformation. The goal of this lesson is to set out guidelines on how we can train ourselves to pay If a male-dominated mindset pervades our being, it will also determine how we carry out our spiritual practice. It is legitimate to do yoga and meditate to achieve certain results. Specific meditations and kriyas produce specific effects. However, we must avoid turning our practice into a bargaining tool. If we do a particular meditation to buy results, our prayers become begging sessions to a bigger than life daddy...

The Core Concept Of Kundalini Yoga

Some people think yoga is a religion. Some people think it is physical exercise for vitality and health. Some people think it is a psychological system that develops the potential of the psyche. In reality, this is all based on misunderstanding. Yoga is essentially a relationship. Consider the origin of the word yoga. Yoga, as we in the West understand it, has come from the biblical word, yoke. This originated from the root word in Sanskrit jugit. They both mean to join together or to untie. Yoga is the union of the individual's unit consciousness with the infinite consciousness. The definition of a yogi is a person who has totally leaned on the Supreme Consciousness, which is God, until they have merged their unit self with the Infinite Self. That is all it means. Yoga is also a technology of Awareness. It starts with the universal human predicament that regardless of your individual level of experience and awareness, the underlying reality of every human mind is that it is both...

Heaven On Earth Yoga Institute

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Balancing Your Life with Yoga

The Hindu tradition explains Yoga as the discipline of balance, another way of expressing the ideal of unity through Yoga. Everything in you must harmonize to function optimally. A disharmonious mind is disturbing in itself, but sooner or later it also causes physical problems. An imbalanced body can easily warp your emotions and thought processes. If you have strained relationships with others, you cause distress not only for them but also for yourself. And when your relationship to your physical environment is disharmonious, well, you trigger serious repercussions for everyone. Healing the planet through Green Yoga The environmental crisis, which is sharpening day by day, is prompting more and more yogis and yoginis to apply Yoga's ethical standards specifically to the health of the ailing planet. This Green Yoga approach is explained in my (Georg's) and Brenda Feuerstein's book Green Yoga (Traditional Yoga Studies). Green Yoga is Yoga that incorporates environmental mindfulness and...

Purpose of kriya yoga

The purpose of kriya yoga is to transform your whole life into a continuous expression ofjoy, bliss and wisdom. It is designed to transform tamas into sattwa. It is intended to refine your whole being. We can say that kriya yoga brings about the following changes 1. Slowly whittles away fears, phobias, conflicts, depressions, false ideas, conditioning, etc. hidden in the depths of the subconscious mind. Kriya yoga harmonizes the whole mind from the surface layers to the depths.

The culmination of kriya yoga

It is designed to illuminate and flood the understanding of the practitioner so that you remove all misconceptions, clean the mind and re-identify yoga. Once one has confronted one's swabhava real nature) then kriya yoga has served its purpose. One will henceforth fix one's mind automatically on Shiva consciousness. One will spontaneously identify oneself with one's real nature, through bad and good circumstances of life. One's whole life becomes full with this re-identification. One's life becomes a source and generator of bliss and wisdom. Kriya yoga is a step on this path. 2 Bhakti Yoga Part 1 - Book II, Lesson 15, Topic Part 2 - Book II, Lesson 16, Topic 1 Part 3 - 3 Karma Yoga Part 1 - Book I, Lesson 12, Topic 1 Part 2 - Book II, Lesson 13, Topic 1 4 Jnana Yoga Book III, Lesson 28, Topic 1

Mortification study and surrendering fruits of work to God are called Kriya Yoga

Those Samadhis with which we ended our last chapter are very difficult to attain so we must take them up slowly. The first step, the preliminary step, is called Kriya Yoga. Literally this means work, working towards Yoga. The organs are the horses, the mind is the reins, the intellect is the charioteer, the soul is the rider, and this body is the chariot. The master of the household, the King, the Self of man, is sitting in this chariot. If the horses are very strong, and do not obey the reins, if the charioteer, the intellect, does not know how to control the horses, then this chariot will come to grief. But if the organs, the horses, are well controlled, and if the reins, the mind, are well held in the hands of the charioteer, the intellect, the chariot, reaches the goal. What is meant, therefore, by mortification Holding the reins firmly while guiding this body and mind not letting the body do anything it likes, but keeping them both in proper control. Study. What is meant by study...

Bhakti combined with karma yoga

Karma yoga can be practised as an entirely separate path of yoga. It is not necessary to practise karma yoga with a feeling of devotion1. But if you combine karma yoga with bhakti yoga, then the whole process becomes intensified it becomes supercharged. Karma yoga alone is a powerful sadhana, but bhakti stimulates and accelerates the whole process. This is the main teaching of the Bhagavad Gita. If you are already devotionally inclined, then you should definitely combine karma yoga and bhakti yoga. What better way is there to worship, to express bhakti than through your work It is also a very productive form of worship that contributes directly to others. The essence of karma yoga is awareness, detachment and renunciation of the fruits of actions'. When bhakti and karma yoga are combined, it becomes almost easy to renounce attachment to the fruits or rewards of one's actions. One merely sacrifices all actions and endeavours to the object of bhakti, whether it What about awareness This...

Essence Of Karma Yoga

Karma Yoga is selfless service unto humanity. Your duty is to work incessantly but not to expect the fruits thereof. This is the central teaching of the Gita. Have a medicine-chest of 12 tissue remedies or some allopathic medicines or homoeopathic medicines. Serve the poor and sick with Atma Bhava. Give one-tenth of your income in charity. This is the highest Yoga. Karma Yoga prepares the mind for the reception of light and knowledge. It expands the heart and breaks all barriers that stand in the way of oneness or unity. Karma Yoga is an effective Sadhana for Chitta Suddhi or purity of heart. Therefore, do selfless service constantly.

Training Of Karma Yoga

A raw untrained aspirant feels, My preceptor is treating me like a servant or a peon. He is using me for petty jobs. He who has understood the right significance of Karma Yoga will take every work as Yogic activity or worship of the Lord. There is no menial work in his vision. Every work is Puja of Narayana. In the light of Karma Yoga all actions are sacred. That aspirant who always takes immense delight in doing works which are considered by the worldly man as menial services, and who always does willingly such acts only will become a dynamic Yogi. He will be absolutely free from conceit and egoism. He will have no downfall. The canker of pride cannot touch him. Study the autobiography of Mahatma Gandhiji. He never made any difference between menial service and dignified work. Scavenging and cleaning of the latrine was the highest Yoga for him. This was the highest Puja for him. He himself did the cleaning of latrines. He annihilated the illusory little 'I' through service of various...

There seem to be paths both which lead to one path The Path of Yoga

One path one might call a path of purification of the mind, a path of the separate soul seeking Union with its Creator. As an outset this would involve a focus on virtuous acts, involving giving, caring, and unconditioned love, with an attitude that avoids selfishly motivated acts, or acts, where one is seeking reward or advantage, as found in greed, lust or hate. This is called Karma Yoga. absolutely free from all thought. With this is said to come a feeling of neither an inside nor an outside regarding the body, of beauty perfection- beatitude. This is called Bhakti Yoga.

Chapter Ashtanga Yoga

Bernard Bouanchaud, (Rosemary Desneux, trans.), The Essence of Yoga Reflections on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali (Portland, Oreg. Rudra Press, 1997), 108-109. 2. Beryl Bender Birch, Power Yoga (New York Fireside, 1995), 20. 3. Fernando Pages Ruiz, Krishnamacharya's Legacy, Yoga Journal, May June 2001 (available online at www.yogajournal.com). 4. Anne Cushman, Power Yoga, Yoga Journal, January February 1995 (available online at www.yogajournal.com).

Chapter Yoga for Mens Health

Joni Hyde, The Low Down on Low Back Pain at www.yoga.com (July 311, 2002). 3. Pam Germain, Posture Perfect at www.yoga.com (August 2, 2002). 6. Kathryn Black, Yoga under the Microscope at www.yogajournal.com. 7. Ibid. And Alice Lesch Kelly, Rest for the Weary at www.yogajournal.com.

Yoga with Weights Is for Super Trendy Health Freaks

Some of the people who practice yoga are super-trendy health freaks. You know the type the tall, toned, lean, slender, buff body the trendy clothes made with hemp or fabrics imported from India and the intricate tattoo running down the spine. Yoga has become a multi-billion-dollar industry in the past decade. Celebrities such as Madonna practice yoga. You can see fashionable people in loose-fitting yoga wear on the streets of Beverly Hills and other chi-chi locales. We hope that these trendy trappings don't prevent anyone from trying yoga with weights. Yoga is at least 5,000 years old, it defies fashion trends, and it has permanent appeal. Don't be afraid to try it because you're not a super-trendy health freak.

Yoga for Boys and Teens

You don't have to be a grown man to practice yoga. Boys and teens can be especially graceful and adept yogis because of their natural flexibility, spontaneity, and eagerness to learn. Starting boys off early on the path of yoga can be one of the greatest gifts a loving parent can offer. It starts children at an early age on a path of health and wellness, while encouraging the development of strength, endurance, suppleness, grace, and balance. In fact, many common yoga sequences were developed for young boys. Yoga colleges, or schools, for boys were established in India in the late 19th and early 20th centuries to offer young boys a full education, including physical culture. These schools were originally reserved exclusively for male students. Today, children throughout the world can practice yoga to support the balanced growth of body and mind. Many of the flowing styles of yoga were specifically developed to meet the needs of growing and active boys combining a sense of movement and...

Going Back in Time The Yoga Tradition

V The history of yoga V The nine types of yoga V Yoga for the new millennium V How yoga first came to the West V Nonspiritual yoga Is it possible You don't have to know anything about the yoga tradition to practice yoga. After all, we're not in school and we're not going to give you any kind of history test. But history can be interesting, especially when there isn't a test no pressure Yoga's history is particularly illustrious and ancient. Understanding the deep and sagacious roots of your fitness program may help you gain a deeper appreciation of yoga's staying power and sacred origins.

Creating Your Personal Yoga Practice Session

If you are just beginning to practice yoga, try performing the Complete Yoga Session presented here a number of times so that you become familiar with and feel easy in each pose. Once you've practiced for a period of time, you can try adapting the session to meet your own personal needs. Yoga poses are commonly categorized into several key groups depending upon the major movement that is generated by the posture thus, most yoga asanas are classified as backward bends, forward bends, balancing poses, inversions, or twists. If your goal is to get a complete body workout, try incorporating at least one posture from each group of exercises. You could adapt the Complete Yoga Session to a shorter practice time by performing one complete round of Sun Salutation, one forward bend (Head-to-Knee Posture), one backward bend (Cobra, Bow, or Bridge Pose), a balancing pose (Tree Pose), an inversion (Shoulderstand or Plow Pose), and a twist (Seated Spinal Twist). If you decide to practice an...

Yoga Helps You Maintain Recover or Improve Your Health

When you consider that 75 to 90 percent of all visits to the doctor are related to stress, Yoga's holistic approach is a prudent first choice for fostering well-being. Through its relaxation, postural, breathing, and meditation exercises as well as dietary rules, Yoga can effectively lower your level of tension and anxiety. Thus, yogic practice boosts your immune system, which helps keep illness at bay and facilitates the physical healing process if you're already sick. Research demonstrates that Yoga is a very effective way of dealing with a variety of health problems from hypertension, adult-onset diabetes, and respiratory illnesses (such as asthma) to sleep disturbance, chronic headache, and lower back pain. Yoga can help improve your cardiovascular functions, digestion, and eyesight and even enable you to control pain. You can practice Yoga as both remedial and preventive medicine. You can't find a cheaper health and life insurance policy...

Yoga What You Need to Know

Debunking Yoga myths Deciphering the word Yoga Exploring the primary branches, styles, and approaches to Yoga Understanding the yogic principles of being Taking control of your mind, body, health, and life with Yoga 7hree or four decades ago, some people still occasionally confused Yoga with yogurt. Today, Yoga is a household word. The fact that just about everyone has heard the word Yoga, however, doesn't mean they know exactly what it means. Many misconceptions still exist, even among those who practice Yoga, so in this chapter, we clear up the confusion and explain what Yoga really is and how it relates to your health and happiness. We also help you see that Yoga, with its many different branches and approaches, really does offer something for everyone. Whatever your age, weight, flexibility, or beliefs may be, you can practice and benefit from some version of Yoga. Although Yoga originated in India, it's for all of humanity.

The Theory Underlying Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy

Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy is based on the belief that a man's body can be a rich reservoir of inner wisdom, which is a commonality among yogic principles in general and many other approaches to body mind integration, both ancient and contemporary. Long after we have forgotten experiences and feelings in conscious awareness, the body remembers. By tapping into the wisdom of the body, men can bring to present awareness various issues that may have been limiting them, release those issues, and transform themselves. Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy aims to provide a bridge from a man's body to his soul. From personal experience, Lee discovered that the practice of yoga asanas, or postures, could guide us to greater presence in our bodies. This presence can lead us to the awareness that is necessary for integrating body and mind. Awareness is heightened when we practice yoga at what Lee describes as the edge that point in a yoga posture at which any more stretch would be too much, and any...

Yoga and You Challenges Confronting the Macho

If you're already practicing yoga or are being drawn to yoga out of a driving fascination, then you don't need to be convinced that it is for you. But if you're like a lot of men, especially of the macho variety or a guy who's addicted to weightlifting or vigorous athletic sport, you may be a bit skeptical or even apprehensive about approaching a practice of yoga. You may feel that it's a practice for women, wimps, or spiritual escapists. Or you may feel a different kind of apprehension a fear that you won't be able to do yoga postures as well as other men who have been practicing for a long time, or will be viewed with contempt as a yoga outsider.2 While such fears are natural, they shouldn't keep you from pursuing yoga. It is true that in recent Western history, yoga has been practiced more by women than by men. However, throughout the history of yoga, many of its practices, particularly the physical postures of hatha yoga, were reserved exclusively for male practitioners. An...

Questions to Ask a Yoga Teacher

What yoga training do you have Yoga teachers can be certified by certain schools of yoga where the training can vary from one week to a few years. What yoga experience do you have If your problems are serious, you should consult your doctor before practicing yoga. Yoga attracts many people as a means of relaxation. Common methods of relaxing, such as watching television or chatting with friends, serve more as a distraction than a means of achieving complete relaxation. Yoga teaches your body and mind to relax completely by consciously releasing both physical and mental tension. You can achieve this relaxation through the practice of yoga poses, breath awareness and relaxation techniques. In fact, relaxation is so important in yoga that a portion of every practice should be entirely devoted to relaxation.

Yoga Bytes at Home School and Work

If you're an extremely busy person, as most of us seem to be these days, you may find it difficult to find time for yoga. Perhaps you think your day is so densely packed with activity that yoga will never fit. Don't despair The great thing about yoga is that you get big results even when you spend just a little time each day. Three 10-minute (or even 5-minute or 3-minute) slots for postures, the first for warmups, the second for more strenuous postures, and the third for relaxation postures, are all you need to start practicing yoga, and you can spread them throughout the day if necessary. You may find that the increased energy you gain magically adds time to your day for even more practice You can even slip tiny little yoga bytes into your day to keep you focused and feeling great. Try squeezing in yoga during the following free times at home, school, and the office.

The Origins of Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy

Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy is an emerging form of body mind integration. It represents a synthesis of ancient yoga practices and modern insights into personal growth. Michael Lee developed Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy as a result of his unique life experiences. Lee, who was born in Adelaide, Australia, was trained in education and psychology and worked for a time as an organizational consultant to the Australian government. Akin to many men today, he is also a spiritual seeker. His search for his own inner self led him to the practice of yoga. He experimented with a variety of approaches to yoga that eventually led him in the mid-1980s to become a resident at the Kripalu Center, where he learned, practiced, and taught that particular approach to yoga (see Chapter 8). In practicing yoga, Lee became aware of its rich potential to be a tool for personal transformation. This became especially apparent to him when he practiced asana postures with the assistance of another man, who also...

Improving Your Diet through Yoga with Weights

When you do yoga-with-weights exercises, you explore your body. You discover how to relax certain muscles and flex others you retrace the pathways of your nerves and find out how different muscle groups work in consort when you balance you feel your breath bring life-giving oxygen to your body and you discover many new feelings and sensations. It may seem far-fetched, but yoga with weights, an exercise program, can actually improve your diet. If the yoga-with-weights program has one theme, it's this Listen to your body so you hear what it's trying to tell you. Yoga with weights helps you get in touch with your body. You gain not only an awareness of how your body reacts to the movements you make with the weights, but also calm and inner composure, which can be helpful in preventing nervous eating. You no longer experience the unnatural hunger spasms caused by anxiety because your thoughts are more in tune with the health needs of your body. We encourage you to understand where your...

What Is Ashtanga Yoga

Ashtanga Yoga (sometimes alternatively spelled Astanga Yoga) is a precise and systematic approach to yoga that emphasizes physical strength and endurance in executing a flowing series of prescribed yoga postures. Various bodily locks and seals are applied in conjunction with a special kind of yogic breathing and gazing with the eyes in a prescribed way at certain fixed points of vision. The combined effect of all these practices results in the generation of heat and energy in a uniquely invigorating and flowing approach to yoga. Ashtanga literally means eight limbs in Sanskrit. This style of yoga is named for the eight-limbed path of yoga outlined by Patanjali in his Yoga Sutras (see page 35). Because this style of yoga is characterized by an especially vigorous approach to practicing the asanas of yoga, it is sometimes popularly referred to as Power Yoga.

What Is Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy

Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy is a contemporary approach to yoga that draws on the innate wisdom of the body to access the soul. Australian-born Michael Lee developed this approach to body mind integration as a result of his own experience and practice of yoga and the yogic life. Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy uses a variety of techniques, including assisted postures, breathing, non-directive dialogue, imagery, and meditation to foster inner awareness. The reference to the mythical phoenix in the name of this yoga therapy highlights its ability to be a powerful tool for personal growth and transformation.

Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy The Style

Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy is generally practiced in a one-on-one setting, with a trained practitioner assisting a client. Lee has trained many individuals in his style of yoga therapy throughout the world, and they are certified as practitioners to provide private sessions. Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy can initiate a process of unfoldment, much like psychotherapy. For this reason, it can be helpful for a man to receive a number of ongoing sessions to explore various issues as they emerge. The number of sessions that might be helpful would, of course, depend upon each individual man's situation. In addition to private sessions, workshops in Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy are offered throughout the country at various learning networks and centers. These workshops can provide an opportunity to experience Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy in a group setting with the support of a number of other people and for a more extended period of time. Finally, a number of workshops and trainings are offered...

Integrative Yoga Therapy Yoga as a Health Profession

Integrative Yoga Therapy (IYT) is an approach to yoga developed by Joseph Le Page in 1993. It offers training programs designed specifically to prepare yoga professionals to tailor yoga for use in mainstream health and wellness settings. IYT is a comprehensive and creative educational program that integrates Le Page's diverse background in yoga, educational systems and processes, world travel, and experience in healing arts. IYT offers two training programs A 200-hour yoga teacher training prepares individuals from a variety of backgrounds to teach therapeutic yoga classes. An advanced level yoga therapist training program is designed for yoga teachers with an interest in applying yoga therapy principles to individuals with specific health challenges. Over the past 10 years, Le Page has trained 2,000 yoga teachers and therapists around the world. For more information on IYT, contact Integrative Yoga Therapy 5237 Darrow Road, 6 Hudson, OH 44236 Tel (800) 750-9642 or (330) 655-1532 Fax...

American Viniyoga Institute

Viniyoga appropriate application of asana, pranayama, chanting and meditation. Professional programs Viniyoga training (RYS-500 level), Foundation for Yoga Therapy, yoga therapist training-levels I and II. American Viniyoga Institute also offers retreats, workshops and privates. Member school, Yoga Alliance and International Association of Yoga Therapists.

Training In Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy

GET THE PROFESSIONAL EDGE Learn new skills and become a Certified Phoenix Rising Practitioner or Yoga Teacher. Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy Level 1 Oct 29-Nov 2 Level 2 Nov 4-9 Yoga Teacher Training with a Yoga Therapy Approach Module A Aug 20-28 Croup Facilitator Training Dec 1-12 2010 TRAINING - OTHER LOCATIONS Call for dates in CA( IL, LA, MT, NY, TN, TX, WA

Yoga Rx for Lower Backs

Your lower back is actually the lumbar vertebrae section of the spinal cord. Spine movement brings much-needed circulation to the vertebral discs and helps keep them supple. The health of your hamstring and psoas (hip flexor) muscles as well as the strength of your abdominal and core muscles also affects your lower back. Helpful Yoga therapy postures allow you to stretch and strengthen key muscle groups, release tension and bring your whole body back into harmony. The following sections give you some general guidelines on what kinds of Yoga movements work well for different lower back issues, and a routine to help you segue into a regular group class.

Yoga and a Mans Specific Health Concerns

Yoga approaches have been developed that address the special needs of men who are suffering from specific physical disabilities. For instance, yoga classes for men with AIDS, yoga for those in wheelchairs, and yoga for other special health concerns are offered by many yoga centers and studios. Check to see if your local yoga center or healthcare facility has a class or program available that suits your particular needs. In addition, B.K.S. Iyengar developed an entire approach to yoga that draws heavily on the use of props and accessories to help people with specific physical challenges perform yoga postures more easily so that they derive therapeutic benefit from them. For more information on Iyengar Yoga, as well as information on how to find an Iyengar Yoga practitioner near you, see Chapter 4. Integrative Yoga Therapy trains yoga practitioners to deal with specific physical conditions within the traditional healthcare setting. For more information on Integrative Yoga Therapy, see...

Chapter Yoga for Athletics and Sports

Yoga for Athletes Secrets of an Olympic Coach (St. Paul, Minn. Llewellyn, 1999), xix. 2. For a whimsical and informative first-hand account of one outsider's foray into yoga territory, see Tim Cahill, Yoga Kicked My Butt, Yoga Journal (September October 2000). 4. Dimity McDowell, Yoga for Baseball, Yoga Journal (July August 2000). 5. Joni Hyde, Stretching for Results (July 31, 2002) available at www.yoga.com. 7. Quoted in Dimity McDowell, Yoga for Kickboxing, Yoga Journal (September October 2000).

Directories and Web Sites for Yoga Health and Fitness

You can search for a yoga class at these Web sites i Yoga Directory Search for yoga centers, classes, and studios. www. yoga-centers-directory.net 1 Yoga Finder Find yoga classes in your area. www.yogafinder.com i Yoga Journal This online yoga magazine offers a directory of yoga teachers (click the Class Search link). www.yogajournal.com The following yoga retreats and spas offer getaways where you can concentrate solely on your yoga practice 1 Baptiste Bootcamps Intense yoga retreats and instruction from Baron Baptiste. www.baronbaptiste.com i Canyon Ranch A yoga retreat in the Berkshires. www. canyonranch.com i Golden Door A yoga retreat in Escondido, California. www. goldendoor.com i Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health A yoga retreat in beautiful Lenox, Massachusetts. www.kripalu.org il Power of Yoga Meditation Retreats Retreats are held at yoga and Zen retreat centers beginners are welcome. www.powerofyoga.com I Rancho La Puerta A yoga retreat in Tecate, Baja California, Mexico. I...

How else should I prepare my yoga environment

Make sure every prop you need for your practice, such as a yoga mat, blankets and blocks, are in the area before you begin. This preparation prevents you from having to run around the house looking for a different prop before you perform each pose. You should consider joining a yoga class, especially if you are a beginner. You may want to take at least a few classes with a qualified yoga teacher before practicing completely on your own. A yoga teacher can work with you to make sure you are doing poses correctly and safely. If you are a beginner, make sure you sign up for a beginner yoga class.

Vinyasa Yoga The Yoga of Flowing Connected Movement

Vinyasa Yoga is a style of yoga that can represent a variety of yoga practices. Vinyasa literally means uninterrupted flow in Sanskrit. What typically characterizes styles of yoga that call themselves Vinyasa is the flowing way in which the sequence of postures is connected. In a Vinyasa Yoga class, each movement is often performed in a flowing sequence, without stopping and starting, with each movement executed in synch with the breath. A number of styles of yoga incorporate this sense of connection and flow such as Ashtanga Yoga, Jivamukti Yoga, and White Lotus Yoga. If you should see a class advertised as Vinyasa Yoga, check with the instructor to find out more about it so that you can understand better what the instructor has in mind regarding uninterrupted flow some Vinyasa Yoga classes can be quite strenuous while others can be more relaxing and restorative.

Choosing a Yoga Class

Probably the best way to start out with yoga is to take a class. You can learn a lot from books and videos, but a real live teacher can address your personal challenges and direct you in ways a book can't. (But don't stop reading this book yet We still have a lot left to tell you.) Consider the following reasons to take a yoga class > Other students learning yoga along with you can offer peer support and camaraderie, in addition to your teacher's encouragement. > A class and a qualified teacher in conjunction with personal practice and lots of books on the subject will teach you more about yoga than any one of these methods alone. Make sure any yoga class you consider meets the following criteria > The yoga teacher is a qualified instructor. Anyone can teach yoga not everyone can teach it well. Don't be fooled by health clubs touting yoga classes taught by club employees who might have read a book on yoga or who think all fitness When you look for a yoga class, you have several...

Yoga For Beginners

Yoga For Beginners

Yoga is an important part of many lives today. Although it is considered a type of exercise, it has the potential to affect the emotional and psychological health of the individual, not just the physical state.

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