7/3/2018 2 Comments
One thing I always notice is the look of confusion on our students faces when we talk about different styles of yoga asana. I have tried here to outline as many styles as I could think of with descriptions and where, if any, places you try out these styles in Colorado. This studio list is mostly specific to Woodland Park, Colorado Springs, Denver, Boulder and Buena Vista, places that our students can drive to easily. I've included links to help you if you see something that sparks your interest! There are so many styles of yoga theses days, try them all and see what you love!!! If you read ALL these words there is a gallery after.
What did I miss! I bet even this long list left something out.
Vinyasa Yoga. The word Vinyasa means to place in a special way. In Vinyasa classes poses are linked together with the breath. This is often called Ashtanga Vinyasa and several schools of yoga can be placed in this category. Includes sun salutations, fluid movements, balance, arm balance and inversions In Vinyasa Yoga teachers have creative freedom when structuring a class, so a class will vary greatly depending on the teacher. This is a dynamic, flow based style, with importance on matching breath with movement. Often heated, it can get sweaty. Founded by Krishnamacharya, who was the teacher of Patthabbi Jois, he preferred a more free flow approach than a set sequence. Vinyasa today is an umbrella term for several styles of Vinyasa. It has become one of the most popular styles of yoga asana. check ours out here.
Ashtanga. Ashtanga yoga was founded by Sri. K. Patthabi Jois, a student of Krishnamacharya. Ashtanga is broken up into 6 series of increasing difficulty, and all are set sequences. This is a breath practice, the most foundational part of this practice is matching breath with movement. The first, or Primary series is called Yoga Chikitsa, or yoga therapy. Designed to heat the blood, purifying the body and the mind. The second series is known as Nadi Shodhana and is to purify the nervous system. Tradionally the poses are practiced in order and what is called Mysore style, and a student only practices until stuck. The teacher gives the student a new pose when they feel they are ready. Ashtanga is the most physically active of the styles, requires commitment and discipline. Teachers wishing to be officially certified Ashtanga Teachers must travel to Mysore, India and practice at KPJAYI shale with Sharath the current leader of Ashtanga. Students travel to the shala during season and may or may not receive certification from Sharath. There are Western Ashtanga trainings popping up, with controversy between the two. You can take classes at Ashtanga Yoga Denver, at the yoga workshop in Boulder, and with Richard Freeman in Boulder. In Colorado Springs you can catch a modified primary series at Yoga Mountain Shadows. If you are interested in taking Western Progressive Ashtanga training I would recommend Ashtanga Yoga Puerto Rico. or the wonderful Asta Yoga Studio in San Francisco.
Rocket yoga was developed by Larry Schultz. He founded It’s Yoga in San Francisco in 1989, creating a vibrant hub of yoga in the Bay Area and is known as the foremost Ashtanga teacher in the West. He created the Rocket sequences as a mix of the primary and secondary series of Ashtanga and adds in advanced poses from the 3rd, and 4th series. Creating a sweaty, fun, intense and beloved practice. He studied for 7 years in India with Patthabbi Jois. In the 80s he toured with the Grateful Dead as their yoga teacher, and Bob Weir coined the practice, The Rocket, because it gets you there faster. Larry passed from this world in 2011. Often called the original power yoga. You can take classes here at our studio at. the inspired level, at the new Bodhi Movement Boulder., and at Evolve Yoga Denver.
Beryl Bender Birch is the founder of the Hard and Soft Astanga Yoga Institute, the give back yoga foundation, and bestselling author of Power Yoga. This is Ashtanga yoga for the West. She studied Ashtanga with Norman Allen, Patthabbi Jois’s first American student, first student to master the primary series, and first student to bring it to the West. She began teaching Ashtanga to a local runners club, and is today one of the most popular teachers in America. He goal was to make Ashtanga Yoga more accessible to Westerners and coined the term “Power Yoga” to convey a distinction between the easy going stretching yoga, and Ashtanga. in 1987 she traveled, met and studied with Patthabi Jois for 6 months, and continued to meet him between 1987-1990. Though she coined the term Power Yoga , this is a different practice from what you will now see called power yoga at places like CorePower, and heated Vinyasa classes.
Power Vinyasa Yoga
This is most common type of Power yoga you will see today at places like Corepower yoga, and heated Vinyasa flow classes. Most of these classes are heated to at or above 95 degrees. While Beryl Bender Birch originally coined the term Power Yoga as a western name for Ashtanga, the practice in these power classes are not the primary series, or a set series. In these classes you will practice sequences that link the breath like Vinyasa and Ashtanga, however this style is known to do a flow once slowly, to make a blueprint, and the repeat the flow several times matching one breath one movement. A Power Vinyasa teacher will have creative freedom to design the sequence. This practice is great for students learning how to match breath with movement. It is a very westernized style of yoga that seeks to demystify, streamline and remove dogma from yoga. You will not typically hear much about meditation, chakras or the 8 limbs of yoga like you will in other styles of Vinyasa. Corepower has two locations in Colorado Springs. You can also try Cambio yoga and Hot Asana both in Colorado Springs.
Baptiste Yoga was founded in the 1940s by Walt Baptiste and his son, Baron.
Baptiste Power Vinyasa stands for leadership, community service, possibility and transformation, on and off the mat. The Asana is based around the teachings of Krishnamacharya and his students, Desikachar and Iyengar whom Baron studied with. Consisting of 3 parts, Baptiste yoga has the physical practice of Asana, meditation, and self-transformation. Classes are heated to 90 degrees and students are encouraged and challenged to explore their potential. This is considered a form of Power Vinyasa. The owners of Uprise yoga in Colorado Springs in the Briargate are Baptiste trained.
A style of yoga founded by Bikram Choudhry, gained in popularity in the 1970s. All Bikram classes run for 90 minutes and consist of the same 26 postures, two breathing practices and in room heated to 95-108 degrees Fahrenheit, with 40% humidity. In the lineage of Bishnu Gnosh from Calcutta whom, Chodhury worked with. All Bikram teachers have gone through a specific 9 week course outlined by Choudhury, who also copy wrote the training. The heat is said to cleanse the body, and be good for the joints. However, like John Friend, Chodhury has been found guilty in sex scandals, is no longer owns the business. Today the practice lives on with some studios sticking with the name Bikram and others choosing yo use terms like Hot 26 or 26&2. Locally you can try a hot 26 flow at Hot on Yoga in Colorado Springs.
From the 1970s until around 2010, Bikram was the only style of yoga to use heat and humidity. However since about 2012, many unrelated yoga-inspired exercise programs began calling themselves Hot Yoga. Hot Yoga includes classes like 26&2, or Hot 26 to denote a Bikram Class without use of the name Bikram.
Forrest yoga was founded by American Yogi, Anna T. Forrest, known for its intensity, long holds of poses, emphasis on core work and standing series that can go for 20 poses on each side, style is emphasized in working through ones feelings, to release physical and emotional trauma. This is Power Yoga, Power Vinyasa style.
Forrest based this style in Sivananda yoga, attention to alignment and props like Iyengar yoga and the heat building poses of Ashtanga. Typically heated to 85 degrees F. Root Center for sacred studies in Colorado Springs has a Forrest Class on the schedule.
Most forms of Yoga in the West can be called Hatha Yoga. Hatha refers to the physical postures of Asana, meaning Ashtanga, Vinyasa, Iyengar and Power are all Hatha Yoga classes. Ha means Sun, and Tha means moon, the yoga of balance. Prepares the body for Meditation. Today the word Hatha Yoga is being used for a specific type of gentle yoga, that is non-linking. Since it can be an umbrella term, sometimes it is advised to call ahead and ask the studio or gym what their type of Hatha Yoga means.
Iyengar yoga was founded by B.K.S. Iyengar. It is a style of Hatha yoga with emphasis on detail, precision and alignment, with the use of props (straps, blocks, chairs, bolsters and the wall).
The key here is structural alignment of the physical body through the development of Asanas and Pranayama. It is a practice of precision. Poses are held for a long time and with props, cultivating strength, awareness, flexibility and stability. It can be therapeutic for specific conditions. Iyengar teachers are not certified in the same way that other teachers are, and have their own governing body and associations. This is one of the most rigorous certifications to receive in yoga. Candidates must have taken at least 3 times per week classes with a certified Iyengar teacher for 4 years before applying, and travel to India often to work with senior teachers, they must teach Iyengar in the way B.K.S. intended and not mix in other styles. They have their own terms for levels of Iyengar training from introductory, intermediate junior, intermediate senior. There is an amazing certified Iyengar teacher here in Woodland Park, Gail owner, of white Iris yoga studio.
Founded by American Yoga Teacher John Friend in 1997. Based in the iyengar style of yoga and elements of Hindu spirituality to create a system of yoga for the West. Emphasizes a set of Universal Alignment Principles. This practice is slower paced with long holds like Iyengar yoga. In 2012 the founder was involved in a public scandal, and is no longer the head of Anusara Yoga, and has no rights to the name. The school is now called the Anusara School of Hatha Yoga. Today you will often hear this referred to as Alignment based yoga. Locally you can now catch Christina Sell around the state, at Jalablu Yoga in Buena Vista, with Julietta Claire at her many classes around the state and like Endorphin in Denver, and at Play Yoga in Colorado Springs
Jivamukti yoga was founded by David Life and Sharon Gannon in 1984. Jiva means soul and mukti means liberation from the cycle of birth and death. Meaning liberation while living. It is a physical, ethical and spiritual practice.
This is a Vinyasa based practice with adherence to 5 central tenants, shastra (scriptures), Bhakti (devotion), ahimsa (non-violence), nada (music), and dhyana (meditation). A vegan-plant based diet is emphasized and you will hear mantras be sung in classes with harmonium. David and Sharron studied in India together in a Sivanada yoga teacher training and opened the first Jivamukti in the East Village of Manhattan. In 1990 they began to practice with Patthabi Jois in Mysore, India. Today Jivamukti has grown and spread all over with many studios.
Teachers have the freedom to choose a sequence, however it opens with spiritual talk and pranayama, pranayama,mantramantra, OM, often by harmonium, the flow is usually quite rigorous, including inversions, arm balancing, teachers do give adjustments and classes end with meditation, and OM. This style is well liked by many celebrities. The closest studio to find Jivamukti classes here is at Pranava Yoga Center. If you find yourself in NYC do stop in their amazing studio, I've been there and loved it. Plus they have an amazing vegan cafe. Its right across the street from the stand bookstore as well. Since I trained at Pranava both Jivamukti and Dharma influence my style, and our other teachers that did teacher training there.
Dharma yoga is classical yoga founded by Dharma Mittra almost 50 years of practice. He was a student of Yogi Gupta ( Sri. Swami Kaliashananda), for over a decade in 1960s. This is a graceful yet challenging style of yoga.
It has roots in all 9 paths of Yoga and all 8 limbs yoga. The yamas and niyamas are of importance and the importance of a vegan, plant based diet. Dharma yoga includes asana, pranayama and meditation in each class with chanting, yoga nidra and gentle encouragement. A devotional practice that emphasizes good health, a clear mind and a kind heart. He founded the Dharma Yoga Center in Manhattan, NYC. You will probably recognize his name these days after his invention of the Yoga Wheel. His is the first and original, known as the Dharma Yoga Wheel. He used to go to hardware stores looking for different rounds of PVC to assist his students in class. Also as the guy do headstands with arms along his side in NYC photos. Check out is studio in NYC at Dharma Yoga Center. Locally the closest you will find is Pranava Yoga Center's Dharma Inspired classes in Colorado Springs. Defiently go his school in Manhattan and take class with him. I loved my time at this studio.
Sivanda yoga is a classical form yoga that has not varied from the teachings of Swami Sivanada. Stretches and tones the whole body. It is an international practice the same format is followed in all the classes. It is a slower paced style with emphasis on breathing, meditation and spirituality. It is currently one of the biggest schools of yoga in the West and is based in 5 branches of yoga philosophy, relaxation/meditation, diet, positive thinking, exercise and proper breathing. All classes start and end with chanting and meditation, and use the same 12 asanas, and their variations, meant to open the chakras. They are in order, headstand, shoulder stand, plough, fish, seated forward fold, cobra, locust, bow, seated spinal twist, crow or peacock, standing forward fold and Triangle. Sessions usually start with Sun Salutations, and end in savasana. This style also emphasizes the importance of vegetarian diet. In Colorado Springs you can find it at Sun Water Spa.
A newer form of yoga that includes tribal dance, traditional yoga, pylometrics, deep core work thumbing beats, sweat ad fun. Encourages female empowerment. Buti is a Marathi word that means "to cure that has been hidden away or kept secret." We have Buti events coming up as well as regular classes at Root Center for Scared Studies in Colorado Springs.
Kundalini yoga is also known as Laya yoga, is influenced by the Shaktism, and Tantra schools of Hinduism. Its main focus is awakening the Kundalini Shakti energy at the base of the spine, through meditation, pranayama, asana, which are called Kriyas, and chanting mantras. Called the yoga of awareness, practitioners strive to cultivate the potential to uphold values, speak truth, and serve and heal others. Practitioners where all white, including a white turban in the Sikh tradition. In 1968, Yoga Bhajan brought his own take on Kundalini Yoga, called Kundalini yoga as taught by Yogi Bahjan, that is a combination of tantric theories and Sikh mantras. While visiting California in the late 1960s her witnessed the hippie revolution, with many principles he recognized from his own Sikh upbringing, he saw that people were wanting to experience God and mysticism, but going about it all wrong with the use of drugs. Yogi Bhajan knew that teaching Kundalini Yoga outside the sacred Indian Lineage was forbidden, but had a vision during meditation that he would teach Kundalini Yoga to the West. He has taught thousands of Kundalini Yoga classes, started teacher trainings, authored several books. He was unfortunately banned from returning to India or Punjab.
As the yoga of awareness, kundalini strives to connect you with your Higher Self, believed that each person has an aspect of Brahman at their core ( God Like), using the Kundalini techniques strive to disconnect one from personal ego and move into universal consciousness. Pranava Yoga Center in Colorado Springs is offering Kundalini.
Tantra means “to weave, or expand”. Tantra blends elements of Raja, Bhakti, karma, Kundalini and Hatha yoga practices. What sets it apart is it also weaves in mystical practices like astrology, Ayurveda, crystals and gems
Tantra employs a powerful combination of asana, mantra, mudra, bandha work, chakra work to build strength, clarity and bliss in your life. By harnessing and embodying the 5 forces of shakti, divine feminine energy we can move through life with more confidence.
Most often people think about sex when they hear the word Tantra, but that is not quite correct. Tantra may help you improve your sex life, but only because it helps you get in touch with your body and energy. The tantric yoga and practices work on the subtle energies of the body to enhance spiritual growth and physical wellbeing. By engaging with these practices, their connection to the universe, your purpose of life and connection to others can be enhanced.
This is a highly individualized style of yoga created by TVK Desikachar. Yogis learn to adapt poses to their specific needs and conditions. Instead of using asana to stretch and strengthen, the principles of proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation PNF is used. Which simply means warming up and contracting a muscle before stretching it, reducing risk of injury.
Acro yoga is a physical practice that combines yoga, acrobatics and Thai yoga massage. There are 3 primary roles, base, flyer and spotter. You can catch the Acrodorks teaching over at City Rock.
Aerial yoga, also called anti-gravity yoga, is newer type of yoga originating in New York, and now widely practiced. Combines traditional yoga asanas, pilates and dance with the use of a hammock. You can try it at Yogafied in Colorado Springs.
This is all about slowing down, and opening the body through passive stretching. Only a handful of poses will be done in one class, allowing the muscles to deeply relax, with the use of props. At the end of class the body feels relaxed and open, could even be little sore the next day due to the deep stretching. This a gentle approach inspired by Iyengar Yoga. You can take restorative yoga here!
Yin Yoga has been pioneered by Paulie Zink and Bernie Clark. It is based in Traditional Chinese Medicine TCM, working with the meridian lines of the body. Long holds of poses are used with props to access the fascia, connective tissue, tendons and ligaments, and joints, the Yin Parts of the body, that need long hold times to find release. We offer Yin!
A practice designed specifically for pregnancy. Prenatal yoga can support moms to be on the emotional and physical level. The emphasis is on breathing, stamina, pelvic floor work, restorative poses and core strength. Builds resiliency for pregnancy. This is a separate training that can be taken after completion of a 200 hour training program. Check out Enso Prenatal in Colorado Springs.
Kripaula Yoga was founded by Amrit Desai in the 1980s, named after his Indian Guru, Dri Kripalvandana, Kripalu, is a Sanskrit word for compassion. The Kripalu center was founded in Massachusetts, is a style of yoga that honors the body. Teaches that the body is the center of you're being, and so you must learn from, as well as accept your body as your best teacher. Instead of saying Namaste, the teachers say Jai Baghwan, which has the same meaning, but in Hindi instead of Sanskrit. The sequences are slower Hatha style with longer holds and focus on press points that are attuned to your body, its about not learning the poses as they are described in books, but adjusting the poses to suit your body.
Rocket Vinyasa Yin Restorative Gentle
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