Achieving Wellness through Yoga: The Eight Most Popular Yoga Styles

Checking out your gym’s yoga class schedule isn’t always easy. How do you know the difference between Hot Yoga and Ashtanga? Bikram and Iyengar? The following is a guide to the several styles of yoga being taught these days.


John Friend in 1997, Anusara yoga is fairly new. Anchored on the premise that people all filled with an innate goodness, Anusara aims to use the to help students open their hearts and allow their inner goodness to flow through.


Pattabhi Jois some 47 years ago. It’s a very strict yoga approach that keeps to a particular order of postures and is similar to vinyasa yoga, where every movement is attached to a breath. The only difference is that Ashtanga always follows the same poses in the same order.


Some thirty years ago, Bikram Choudhury invented this 26-pose yoga specialty where classes were held in machine-heated spaces. Similar to Ashtanga, a Bikram class always moves in the same sequence, although a Bikram sequence is most certainly distinct from an Ashtanga sequence.


Hatha yoga is a general term that means any type of yoga that focuses on physical postures. In most cases, yoga classes in the U.S. are actually Hatha yoga. When you see class labeled as Hatha, it usually means that it teaches most fundamental yoga postures.


Generally speaking, the mere difference between Bikram and hot yoga classes is that the latter changes Bikram’s sequence slightly, hence it must be known by another name. The area will be heated and you will sweat a lot, so using mats and accessories particularly designed for hot yoga classes is a must.


S.Iyengar, this school of yoga is very punctilious, with huge attention devoted to finding the best alignment for a pose. To assist students in finding the proper alignment, an Iyengar studio provides an entire variety of yoga accessories, including blankets, chairs, bolsters, blocks and so on.


Restorative yoga is a nice way to relax and smoothen out your nerves. Also termed yin yoga, restorative classes rely on blankets, blocks and bolsters to help students into passive poses, providing them the benefits of a pose without requiring any effort. A well-picked restorative class is more refreshing than a nap.


Vinyasa classes are well-known for their liquid, movement-heavy approach. Vinyasa teachers ensure classes include smooth transitions between poses, and the intention is to connect breath to movement. It certainly gets puzzling to select the best yoga class when there’s a ton of options available to you. However, when you understand each one of them, and your own needs, it should be easier to make a decision.

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