With all the different styles of yoga available, how do you know which one is right for you? The following detailed guide will provide the answers you are looking for (adapted from here).
What is it? Vinyasa Yoga, also call “Flow” Yoga, is the most popular style of yoga in the United States. Each yoga pose flows from one to another while you focus on your breathing and stability. No two classes are alike and each yoga studio will have something different to offer in the Vinyasa style.
Who is it for? Vinyasa is good for beginners up through advanced. If there is a challenging pose the teacher will often show you a modification, allowing you the flexibility to do what is most comfortable.
What is it? Hatha yoga is a slow and gentle yoga, designed to help you slow down at the end of the day. The poses are calm and precise and allow you to focus on the inhale and exhale of your breath.
Who is it for? Hatha is excellent for beginners as the poses are deliberate and allow you to relax. Anyone looking for a way to wind down after work or before bed should try Hatha.
What is it? Also known as “Power” yoga, Ashtanga uses powerful movements and it designed to be a strenuous workout. Arms will be sculpted and legs will be lean after training with Ashtanga yoga for just a few weeks.
Who is it for? Athletes or those who are physically strong would benefit from this type of yoga. If you want a good cardio workout while still toning your body, then Ashtanga yoga will be the style that best suits you.
What is it? Bikram yoga is all about the sweat. More commonly known as “Hot” yoga, the temperature in the yoga room is cranked up to anywhere from 85 – 100 degrees. There are 26 basic poses the yoga teacher will take you through swiftly to keep up your heart rate. Expect to sweat and feel cleansed after the yoga session
Who is it for? Anyone, as long as you are drinking plenty of water. Beginners to advanced students are always encouraged to attend. If you feel light headed or tired, you are encouraged to lie down and rest until you catch your breath again.
What is it? Iyengar yoga is a slow and methodical type of yoga that works on aligning your body. It uses many different props to help you stabilize your body such as blocks and straps. Iyengar helps restore your body and will help soothe aches and pains.
Who is it for? Iyengar yoga is particularly beneficial for people who have any chronic pain. Iyengar can be used as a form of physical therapy, gently easing the body back towards health. However, any can try it and feel the remedial effects this form of yoga has to offer.
Anyone can reap the benefits of a consistent yoga practice. Know what you want to get out of your practice will help you pick a class that is directly suited to your needs as a student of yoga.