Mel's Take 5- September 2018
Your Guide all things #naturalinnola
5 Types of Yoga and where to find them in NOLA:
The Sanskrit term “hatha” is an umbrella term for all physical postures of yoga. In the West, hatha yoga simply refers to all the other styles of yoga (Ashtanga, Iyengar, etc.) that are grounded in a physical practice. However, there are other branches of yoga such as kriya, raja, and karma yoga that are separate from the physical-based yoga practice. The physical-based yoga is the most popular and has numerous styles. Hatha yoga classes are best for beginners since they are usually paced slower than other yoga styles. Hatha classes today are a classic approach to breathing and exercises. If you are brand-new to yoga, hatha yoga is a great entry point to the practice.
In NOLA: Freret Street Yoga, www.freretstreetyoga.com.
2. Iyengar Yoga
Iyengar yoga was founded by B. K. S. Iyengar and focuses on alignment as well as detailed and precise movements. In an Iyengar class, students perform a variety of postures while controlling the breath. Generally, poses are held for a long time while adjusting the minutiae of the pose. Iyengar relies heavily on props to help students perfect their form and go deeper into poses in a safe manner. Although you won’t jump around, you will definitely get a workout and feel incredibly open and relaxed after an Iyengar class. This style is really great for people with injuries who need to work slowly and methodically.
In NOLA: Yoga Bywater, www.yogabywater.net.
3. Kundalini Yoga
Kundalini yoga practice is equal parts spiritual and physical. This style is all about releasing the kundalini energy in your body said to be trapped, or coiled, in the lower spine. These classes really work your core and breathing with fast-moving, invigorating postures and breath exercises. These classes are pretty intense and can involve chanting, mantra, and meditation.
In NOLA: Eight Chakras Yoga, www.eightchakrasyoga.com.
If you are looking to sweat in yoga, this is the style for you. Bikram yoga is named after Bikram Choudhury and features a sequence of set poses in a sauna-like room—typically set to 105 degrees and 40 percent humidity. The sequence includes a series of 26 basic postures, with each one performed twice.
In NOLA: Bikram Yoga New Orleans, www.bikramyoganeworleans.com
5. Ashtanga Yoga
In Sanskrit Ashtanga is translated as “Eight Limb path.” Ashtanga yoga involves a very physically demanding sequence of postures, so this style of yoga is definitely not for the beginner. It takes an experienced yogi to really love it. Ashtanga starts with five sun salutation A’s and five sun salutation B’s and then moves into a series of standing and floor postures. In Mysore, India, people gather to practice this form of yoga together at their own pace—if you see Mysore-led Ashtanga, it’s expected of you to know the series. Vinyasa yoga stems from Ashtanga as the flowing style linking breath to movement.
In NOLA: Ashtanga Yoga Room, www.ashtangayogaroom.com.