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Yoga for Beginners: Choosing the Right Class--Relaxation and Spirituality

 
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  • ]]>Kundalini Yoga]]> “Kundalini” is spiritual energy at the base of the spine. This type of yoga focuses on the seven chakras, or energy centers, drawing the energy upward through the body. Kundalini yoga incorporates breathwork, meditation, mudras and chanting to help open the energy centers of the body.
  • ]]>Sivananda Yoga]]> This style of yoga follows a traditional, prescribed practice incorporating physical exercise, breathwork, relaxation, vegetarian diet and meditation with the aim of evolving spiritually.
  • ]]>Integral yoga]]> This style of yoga was founded by Sri Swami Satchidananda in 1966. It focuses on principles of peace, living a healthy and balanced life, and serving others. The goal of Integral Yoga is for all people to live peacefully together on earth. "Integral Yoga uses classical hatha postures, which are meant to be performed as a meditation, balancing physical effort and relaxation," explained Swami Ramananda, president of the New York Integral Yoga Institute in Manhattan, in an interview with Yoga Journal.
  • ]]>Ananda Yoga]]> Ananda yoga uses physical postures, breathwork, classical yoga meditation techniques and yoga philosophy to connect body, mind and spirit and to raise consciousness. For beginners, Ananda Yoga is gentle; the practice becomes more challenging as you progress. Regardless of your level, this style of yoga is directed inward and is not a vigorous, fast-paced physical workout. Relaxation, alignment and awareness are the key elements of the yoga practice.

Many studios offer “Gentle Yoga” or “Restorative Yoga” classes, some of which are based on Judith Lasater’s Relax and Renew. These are wonderful classes if your main focus is relaxation and stress relief.

Finding an appropriate yoga class begins with an assessment of your own personal desires and needs.

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