The ABCs of Yoga Styles

PHOENIX RISING YOGA THERAPY

This style helps release physical and emotional tension through assisted postures, breathing techniques and ongoing student/teacher dialogue. A deeper connection to the self is encouraged by incorporating traditional yoga techniques with contemporary psychology to promote the healing of mind, body and spirit.

POWER

An intense style that creates heat and energy. Power yoga evolved from Ashtanga yoga and was developed by American Beryl Bender Birch in the early 1990s. Its flowing style requires the strength and stamina of Ashtanga, but doesn't always follow the same sequence of postures, making it similar to Vinyasa style. Power yoga is usually performed in a heated room. Although Baron Baptiste is a name often associated with power yoga, he has developed his own method, called Baptiste Power Vinyasa yoga, which is taught only by teachers he certifies. Students that enjoy aerobics will probably favor power yoga.

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SIVANANDA

Cultivates awareness of mind and body by incorporating five main principles of proper exercise, breathing, relaxation and diet, as well as positive thinking and meditation. Based on the philosophy of Swami Sivananda, of India, the practice uses chanting, breathing techniques and meditation to help release stress. Sivananda focuses on 12 basic yoga postures to increase strength and spinal flexibility. It is an excellent practice for beginners, those recovering from injury or anyone interested in spiritual aspects of yoga.

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SVAROOPA

A style that helps each student discover their bliss. The Sanskrit word svaroopa means "the true nature of being." Attention to alignment in specifically chosen poses helps to soften the body's connective tissues and ease spinal tension. Blocks and bolsters may be used to allow for deeper muscle release. The style is suitable for beginners and useful for those recovering from injury.

VINYASA

A challenging style that matches breath to movement. Vinyasa yoga poses incorporate alignment principles and are woven together in a flowing practice that is both intense and dance-like. Translated from Sanskrit, vinyasa means "without obstacle." The style is best suited to energetic, physically fit students.

VINIYOGA

A transformative, slower and more individualized form of yoga that emphasizes gentle flow and coordinated breath with movement. Viniyoga yoga teaches the student how to apply the yoga tools of poses, chanting, breathing and meditation. Function is stressed over form in this style. Viniyoga is recommended for beginners and seniors, as well as those who are in chronic pain or healing from injury or disease.

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PLEASE NOTE: The contents of this Yoga Guide are for informational purposes only. The information is not intended to be used in place of a visit or consultation with a healthcare professional. Always seek out a practitioner who is licensed, certified or otherwise professionally qualified to teach.

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