Vinyasa yoga – Definition and Benefits

Definition of Vinyasa yoga

Vinyasa yoga consists of a sequence of yoga postures passed through a flow effortlessly, using breath. It is considered a seamless flow of poses of external movements that represents our thinking and feeling. Though Vinyasa yoga is practised extensively around the world, it is not a yoga form understood by many. The word Vinyasa is a combination of two words from Sanskrit, namely ‘Vi’ and ‘Nyasa’ meaning ‘in a special way’ and ‘to place’. The following poses are considered appropriate for beginners and can be used as an introduction to Vinyasa yoga.

Main features of Vinyasa Yoga

Thanks to the various range of poses offered by Vinyasa yoga, two classes are never alike, in opposition to other types of yoga based on the repetition of postures. In that sense, Vinyasa offers several benefits to both beginners and advanced practitioners: one can develop a well-balanced body and avoid the risk of repetitive motion caused by practising the same poses every day. Usually, a Vinyasa yoga class begins with the Vinyasa postures consists mostly of a plank, Chaturanga as well as upward facing dog or similar variations of these. 

Vinyasa yoga is more popular than other yoga forms and very accessible to beginners, however it is not an easy one to practice. Since it is more athletic and aerobic, people feel the effects of a good sweat and hard work out, therefore this is a great type of yoga to practise in a class, at least as an introduction. 

Plank posture (begginers)

This is the first step. It is done by stepping back from the front of the yoga mat. You can also drop to your knees if plank feels too much for you. Maintain your shoulders placed over wrists and align your hips in line with shoulders. Then you need to elongate forward by the crown of your head and out by your heels. Plank is similar in the beginners and advanced version of Vinyasa Yoga. In the next step, you need to lower to knees, then chest as well as chin while exhaling and come down to your mat. Your butt needs to stay high in the air and elbows should point straight back along the sides of your body. This is a good pose for developing arm strength and backbends. 

Cobra posture (beginners)

This is the next posture. To do this, inhale deeply and slide forward till you reach a low cobra posture. Arms should be steady. While you lower your hips to the floor, keep your chest come forward and lifted off from the ground. It is important to make this lift originate from the strength of your back and not by pushing down into the hands. Try to keep as little weight as possible in your hands when you position your pelvis and the top part of your feet to the mat. 

ChaturangaDasasana (beginners)

This posture is highly suitable in the advanced version of Vinyasa yoga as a substitute for the cobra posture. For doing this, keep your body in a straight line and maintain your shoulders higher than your elbows. Since this is a very tough position, try to use your leg strength and press the backs of the knees toward the sky and give force into the ball of your feet to include the leg muscles. Try to remain in this position as long as possible. 

Downward facing dog (advanced)

In this posture, you need to curl your toes under your body and straighten your arms to push back to reach the correct position. If you feel it difficult can come to all fours like a child’s pose. In the downward-facing dog, maintain your hand’s shoulder-width apart and maintain your feet in hip-width apart. You need to keep your spine long, press the sit bones towards the sky while keeping the heels towards the floor. 

Upward facing dog (advanced)

To do this pose, inhale deeply and straighten the arms, drop your hips and roll over your toes to the tops of the feet into the posture of an upward facing dog. To attain this posture, you can flip the feet one by one. Then you need to press into the hands and feet and maintain the thighs off the floor and keep the shoulders at a distance from your ears. 

Vinyasa yoga is more popular than other yoga forms though it is not an easy one to practice. Since it is more athletic and aerobic, people feel the effects of a good sweat and hard work out. For many, it is fun, and they like to practice it repeatedly. Vinyasa yoga is powerful and strong due to its diversity. If you get a good teacher, you can enjoy it well. So you try to find one who can help you according to your need and surely you will enjoy it. 

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