ashtanga yoga

sava

 

“If A Person Can Breath They Can Do Yoga”

Developed by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois in conjunction with his teacher Sri T. Krishnamachrya in the 1930s, Ashtanga vinyasa yoga is a physical and dynamic form of hatha yoga. The practice involves a set series of poses that are linked together by movement and breath known as vinyasa. There Are six Series or levels Of Ashtanga Yoga starting with the primary series by which the student progresses at their own pace with the guidance of a teacher. Ashtanga yoga utilizes the Trishtana Method—focus of attention or action on three main places: pose (asana), breathing (pranayama), and gaze (dristhi). Asanas purify, strengthen, and give flexibility to the body. Breathing must be steady, with an even inhalation and exhalation, and performed using correct energetic locks (bandhas). And by fixing the gazing point, the mind is stabilized and becomes less distracted creating mental clarity and inner peace.

“When yoga practice is sustained with great diligence and dedication over a long period of time, the heat generated from it burns away these poisons [desire, anger, delusion, greed, envy, and sloth], and the light of our inner nature shines forth.”

 The word Ashtanga is composed of two Sanskrit words, “Ashto” and “Anga.” “Ashto” refers to the number eight, while “Anga” means limb or body part. As outlined in the Yoga Sutras- the authoritative text which defines the philosophy and practice of yoga, this is an eight-part path which, if followed, leads to self-awakening and helps you live a meaningful life.

The Eight Limbs of yoga are:

Yama(Ethical Living)

Niyama (Positive Habits/Observances)

Asana (Yoga Postures)

Pranayama (Breath Control/freedom)

Pratyahara (Withdrawal Of The Senses)

Dharana (Concentration)

Dhyana (Meditation)

Samadhi (Complete Stillness Of The Mind)

 The first five limbs are external meaning we actively practice them on our yoga mats or as we conduct ourselves in the world. The final three limbs of Ashtanga yoga arise spontaneously from the sustained practice of the previous limbs, leading the practitioner to discover their highest human potential!

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