Articles in the Yoga Category
One of the amazing things about yoga is that despite the great benefits that it produces, it requires no costs. There is not specific yoga training equipment that one has to use in order to obtain the desired results and there is no such thing as the perfect environment required for practicing yoga.
All this is a direct consequence of the fact that yoga is, more than a practice, a state of mind and a life style. That is why your will, as well as your believes and attitudes towards this philosophical path are all that actually matter. Moreover, a balanced and healthy diet, based on natural food, is a key issue for preparing yourself for your first yoga session. What we eat can strongly affect both our mind and our soul, so it is crucial to mind what we eat.Twitter This!
The history of yoga is long and steeped in tradition. Contrary to what some people may believe, yoga was not developed as the newest way to slim down so they could fit into a smaller pants size.
The history of yoga goes back 5,000 years. It originated in India, and the first time the word yoga was found in written form was in the Rig Vada, one of the sacred texts used by Vedic priests. Yoga is a means of achieving spiritual enlightenment.
Originally, yoga techniques were passed down from teacher to student through word of mouth. These techniques had never been written down until the Indian sage Patanjali wrote down a systematic method of yoga in the Yoga Sutras. Patanjali is considered to be the father of yoga.
According to Patanjali, there are eight limbs of yoga, which lead to the ultimate goal of enlightenment.
Yama – abstaining from violence, stealing, lust, greed
Niyam – developing devotion, purity, studiousness, contentment, discipline
Pranayama – controlling the breathTwitter This!
Moksha is a term used in many Indian religions. Someone who is thought to experience Moksha is absolved of the suffering and constant rebirth (reincarnation) that life brings. Constantly going through life and death is not considered to be a good thing according to many religious Indian people.
In Hinduism, Moksha cannot be obtained until one reaches a state of full self realization. A Hindu is likely to practice at least one form of Yoga. They also realize that God shows up in many different forms and is unlimited. He shows up personally and sometimes impersonally.
Four Yogas will take someone on the path to Moksha:
1. Karma Yoga – Work for the supreme.
2. Jnana Yoga – Realize the supreme.
4. Bhakti Yoga – Serve the supreme with love and devotion.
Depending on which school of Hindu one decides to follow they will be required to follow one path or another. There are two major schools that are followed nowadays.Twitter This!
Yoga found it’s roots in ancient India. To practice yoga is to focus on enhancing both physical and mental discipline. There are many different schools of yoga; some of which I will briefly describe in this article.
A sage named Patanjali is believed to be the founder of Yoga by many people. He defines yoga as a practice that inhibits changes in the mind. Patanjali’s texts have influenced one of the most followed schools of meditation called Ashtanga Yoga (Eight-Limbed Yoga). Here are the eight limbs:
1. Yama – Devoid of lying, violence, covetousness, sensuality and being possessive.
2. Niyama – content, study, purity, austerity and belief in god.
3. Samadhi – to merge the conscious mind with the object of meditation.
4. Dhyana – Intensely contemplating the nature of meditation.
5. Pranayama – to stop (restrain), breath control.
6. Pratyahara – Remove the senses from external stimuli.
7. Asana – seated meditation.
8. Dharana – Focusing on one object.Twitter This!
When it comes to promoting relaxation and reducing stress, nothing beats yoga. Unfortunately this isn’t the case for everyone. Most people who quit yoga think they fail because they are unable to get the positions and technique right. In fact, the reason they fail is that they put too much importance on getting the positions and technique right.
I do not profess to be a master of yoga. In fact, I am a beginner, with very little skill. However I have taught drumming for many years, and the pitfalls are similar. Here is my advice for yoga beginners.
Week 1 – Enjoy the activity:
Grab a beginner yoga video and set up your mat in a place that you can be comfortable and alone (there’s no room for self-consciousness in this step). Go through the exercises, but act as though you are a six year old having fun, rather than an adult worrying about technique. Try all of the positions, don’t worry if there are some you can’t perform right away, modify as necessary.Twitter This!
Harmony is something that is quite elusive in these modern times. I needn’t explain this statement to anyone who is juggling family, work, commuting, etc., while trying to fit in financial planning, exercise, a modicum of recreation, and who knows what else, only to have a health crisis, or some other “deal with me now’ situation occur without warning.
Add to this recipe the stimulants prescribed by Dr. Technology, a helpful yet sometimes overzealous and seductive caregiver, and the world does indeed seem to be spinning out of control, or at least at a faster whirl on its axis.
Yoga, learned properly and incorporated into one’s life as a daily practice, transforms. Some who are reading this may know this from experience; others may have dabbled in a class or two and found it helpful at the time, but may never have learned moment to moment use to relieve stress and anxiety.Twitter This!
Pilates is comprised of over 500 controlled exercises that are a balanced blend of strength and flexibility training intended to improve posture, create long, lean muscles, and reduce stress. Pilates exercises have evolved over the past 75 years.
Through smooth, continuous motion, Pilates works multiple muscle groups simultaneously. Its focus is particularly on strengthening and stabilizing the abdominal region. Because Pilates focuses on quality of movement, one feels invigorated after a session instead of feeling exhausted.
Your first Pilates session should be a private lesson in which the instructor will introduce you to the equipment, give you an idea of where your body’s strengths and weaknesses lie, and enable you to make informed decisions.
The Pilates exercises can be performed either on machines or on a mat. A variety of equipment is used to perform some of the over 500 exercises. On the mat you perform with a group, performing the same exercises, at the same pace.Twitter This!
Many have heard of yoga and Pilates. But, not everyone realizes that there are several differences between these two types of exercising regimens. In fact, yoga is hardly classified as just an exercise program. Each of these methods are quite powerful tools to allow you to feel and look better. But, they are also very different. In order to help you to make a choice between yoga and Pilates, let’s explain them a little further.
Yoga – It came way earlier
Yoga has been around for over 5000 years. It is something much more than just a way of exercising. In fact, it is a lifestyle change that many people need to take seriously. This type of program is centered on the spiritual healing of the body as well as the physical aspects. It uses a wide combination of breathing and movements to get the body back into its targeted range. Yoga is something that encompasses the entire lifestyle in ethical, spiritual and physical form.Twitter This!
What is Yoga?
The word “yoga” means “union.” Yoga is a psycho-physical discipline with roots that go back about 5,000 years. There is a lot more to yoga than physical postures (Asanas), or the breathing exercises (Pranayama) or even the meditation. In the true tradition of yoga the goal is union with the Absolute, known as Brahman, or with Atman, the true self. Most people now, however, approach yoga to obtain the very real benefits of health, mental clarity, stress release and fitness. The wonderful thing about yoga is its flexibility. Practitioners can focus on the spiritual, psychological or physical benefits of yoga, or all of the above.
Is Yoga a Religion?
Yoga defies categorization. Whatever your method of contacting the Divine, Yoga can accelerate movement in that direction. It does not discriminate on the basis of gender or religion or race. Yoga is truly universal. Most people find that they can practice Yoga without any conflict with their religious beliefs.
Is Yoga Good for You?Twitter This!
Many studies have been conducted to determine which areas will benefit from an extended practice of yoga. Yoga practitioners are most likely to see improvements in the areas of physiology, psychology, and biochemistry.
Furthermore, practitioners of yoga speak of a unification of the body, mind and spirit achieved through the practice of yoga exercises and breathing techniques. But, of course, that is a bit difficult to test scientifically.
Yoga Is An Ancient Way of Life
Yoga is not a recent development. It has been practiced for thousands of years, during which time people have greatly benefited from it. 1 of the fundamental beliefs shared by yogis is that the mind and the body are a unified system, which in a proper environment, can find harmony and self-healing.
Demonstrated Health Benefits
Many doctors consider yoga to have therapeutic results, and recommend it for several illnesses and conditions, mainly related to the nervous system.Twitter This!