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All about events of Total Yoga!

What Yoga style is for you?

When I started practicing Yoga, a few people used to ask me, "What yoga style are you practicing?" And, I  was like, "The usual...., where you do Surya Namaskars and fancy postures." It was only later, I realized there were different types/schools of yoga. And today, new yoga forms keep popping up. But, not all are authentic. Besides, a few of them get popular as they meet the contemporary fitness needs of the people. Different types of Yoga styles The most popular and widely practiced yoga styles will be seen. We are not talking about yoga fads or yoga hybrids. The various schools of yoga also reflect the evolution of mankind. Thus, the 12 main styles of yoga are: 1) Iyengar Yoga: This is a purist yoga named after founder B.K.S. Iyengar. Iyengar yoga is all about precise alignment and deliberate sequencing. Props like blocks, straps, harnesses, and incline boards are used to get you more perfectly into positions. Because of its slow pace, attention to detail, and use of props, Iyengar yoga can be especially good if you're recovering from an injury. Besides, Iyengar is still one of the most popular types of yoga taught today. 2) Ashtanga yoga: Ashtanga is a system of yoga that was brought to the modern world by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois. If you attend an ashtanga class at a studio you will be led nonstop through one or more of the ashtanga series, while being encouraged to breathe as you move from pose to pose. Each series is a set sequence of asanas, always in the same order. Thus, it is typically fast-paced, vigorous and physically challenging. 3) Hatha Yoga: It stems from a deep understanding of the mechanics of [...]

Know your asana- Swastikasana

Swastikasana is a meditative posture. The sanskrit word Swastik means auspicious. The asana allows the practitioner to sit straight in stillness. This pose also enhances the hip flexibility. What is so special about Swastikasana This is a meditative posture which stretches the hips and the thighs. The asana balances the lower body alignment, as the right-knee and left knee come on the top, alternatively. This is a great posture to induce calmness and meditativeness. Chakra-wise As we sit in this meditative posture,the Ajna chakra is stimulated. The energy of the third-eye allows us to access our inner guidance. It also allows us to cut through illusions and to access deeper truths. When Ajna chakra is fully activated, both hemispheres of the brain function in synchrony. The right hemisphere's creativity and synthetic thinking is integrated and balanced with left hemisphere's logical and analytical thinking. Benefits of Swastikasana Meditation pose: Swatikasana is a good meditation pose. Especially for people who find it difficult to sit in, more classical poses like Padmasana and Siddhasana. Stretches the lower body: The hamstrings and glutes are stretches. This is a great stretch for runners. Spinal alignment: The spine is stretched which strengthens the back. Optimal organ functioning: As the torso is stretched, all the organs have optimal place to function efficiently. Stimulates calmness: As our eyes are focused on the Trikuti (third eyes), calmness and clarity is induced. Pro-tip Keep your spine straight and stretched Contra-indications Avoid in case of severe knee pain and skip if you have got a hip surgery. Though yoga has a set of meditative poses, we are free to explore more possibilities. The yoga sutras have defined asana as "Sthira Sukha asana." This means that the posture should be comfortable that we can hold [...]

Yoga cures for Varicose veins

Varicose veins can be cured with yoga asanas and pranayama. It is a condition in which the veins get enlarged and twisted and are visible just under the surface of the skin. Severe long standing varicose veins can lead to leg swelling. This ailment often affect the legs because they are the farthest from the heart and gravity makes it harder for the blood to flow upwards. Causes of varicose veins Heredity tendency, lack of exercise, standing for long duration , hormonal fluctuations, very tight clothing, obesity, repeated deliveries, constipation, wearing high heeled shoes for long duration. Symptoms Aching heavy legs, ankle swelling, cramps, burning, itching, restlessness, throbbing, discoloration around the veins. Yoga therapy Yoga therapy brings relief and also aids in correcting and restoring damaged veins to their former condition. Patients have reported great improvement in their conditions by regular practice of yoga asana and pranayama,where there's no severe damage. Extreme cases require medical consultation because blood gets collected in one spot causing clots. These clots can travel to lungs, heart or brain.Under such circumstances medical treatment is required and no yogic exercises should be practiced until doctor advice. Generally this is not a life threatening condition but it's very painful. In yoga,the asanas which allow the blood to drain back to the heart, allowing damaged veins to resume in a normal manner are beneficial .Inversions are most effective like Sarvangasana, Viparita Karani and Sirsasana. Other asanas like- Pavanmuktasana, Chakrasana, Paschimottanasana, Vajrasana, Naukasana, Tadasana, Surya namaskar and Savasana. Sirsasana by Pangong Tso Lake Pranayama Anulom vilom, Bhramri pranayam and Omkar recitation helps in relief from pain. Useful Advice  Keeping legs elevated for long duration brings relief. Avoid sitting in cross legged position. Standing for [...]

Wrong food combinations as per Ayurveda

Why Food Combinations? All the times your stomach was upset or you were suffering from gas, bloating, acidity, indigestion; It could be due to eating wrong combinations of food. According to ayurveda, every food has its' own rasa (taste), virya (heating or cooling energy) and vipaka (post digestion effect).  So while it is true, every individual's agni determines how the food is digested. Food combinations are equally important. Especially for people with weak digestion or stomach issues. Poor food combinations lead to indigestion, fermentation, putrefaction and gas and toxic formation. Food Combinations that hinder digestion 1) Fruits with anything else: Fruits are easily digested, while other foods take time. Inhibited by the more complex food, the fruit tends to move through the digestive tract too slowly and can cause fermentation, gas, and bloating 2) Liquids and Solids: As a law, no liquid should be taken with solids. Liquid tends to pass away immediately into the intestines taking away all the digestive enzymes thus inhibiting the digestion. Liquids should be taken at least 20 minutes prior to meal and not immediately after or along with meal. But they can be taken one hour after meal. 3) Mixing two proteins: Each type of protein requires a specific character, strength and timing of digestive juice secretions. This means that no two types of concentrated protein should be consumed together at a meal. Nuts, meat, eggs, cheese, or other protein foods should not be eaten together. And no two types of animal protein should be eaten together. 4) Meat and Dairy: Meat and dairy should never be eaten together. Meat is heating and milk is cooling so this is a bad combo. They contradict one another, upsetting agni and producing toxins. 5) Cooking with [...]

Know your asana – PAWANMUKTASANA

Pawanmuktasana is a great asana to release toxins and abdominal gas. It is a great counterpose for Chakrasana. The back is released and relaxed in this Wind-relieving pose. This reclined posture can be done easily by everyone. What is so special about this asana? When hugging your knees, the ascending colon is compressed on the right side aiding in the uptake of nutrients. While the descending colon is compressed on the left side, which is great for eliminating waste. The transverse colon is massaged when both knees are hugged together against the abdomen. Therefore, a great posture to keep the colon healthy! Chakra-wise As the posture is more relaxing, the prana depends more on the breath and the thyroid gland being stimulated. Thus the Swadhisthan and Anahata chakra are subtly affected. Benefits of Pawanmuktasana Great pose to flatten the spine- After intense backbends or spinal stretches, wind-relieving pose relaxes the vertebrae and the back. Releases toxins from the body- As the stomach and colon are pressed, all the gas is released. Improves digestion-  As the abdominal organs are stimulated and the blood flow is directed towards the stomach. Relaxation pose- The pose is used, post intense asanas, to relax the body and breath. Thyroxine is released-  The hormone  stimulates the consumption of oxygen and thus the metabolism of all cells and tissues in the body. Thus, maintaining hormonal balance in the body. Great ailment for bloated stomach and gas issues. Pro-tip Try holding your elbows around the knees. Contra-indications Avoid in case of abdominal surgery. It's the simple things that can make a big difference. Similarly, the practice of Pawanmuktasana is relaxing and energising, as it prepares us for the next practice. Everytime we hold an asana, [...]

Exploring Sankalpa (resolution)

What is Sankalpa? Sankalpa is a sanskrit word which means an intention formed by the heart and mind. A Sankalpa is a resolution  which is made at the beginning of yoga practice, meditation or even as we start our day. The idea of repeating a sankalpa is to create the life we are meant to embrace and enjoy. When made on a mind that is calm and relaxed, the sankalpa is impressed on the subconscious mind. It is like sowing seeds into our subconscious mind, knowing that when the time is right and when we are ready, we will receive it!! Going beyond resolutions A lot of us have monthly goals or we all are well aware of New year resolutions. But, due to lack of willpower or consistency, our resolutions are withered away. According to Richard Miller, PhD, a clinical psychologist and teacher in the Advaita Vedanta and Kashmir nondual traditions, a sankalpa arrives with everything needed to fully realize it. This includes iccha (tremendous will and energy), kriya (action), and jnana (the wisdom of how to deliver that action). Miller says. “You don’t have to ask where you’ll find the will to do it. The energy and will is already there. The sankalpa informs us of the action we’re willing to take into the world.” How do we use Sankalpa Our resolution is always stated in the present tense. If we state it in the future, it will always be there. There needs to be consistency, we cannot keep changing our resolve every week. It's like a baby that needs to be nurtured. Sankalpa shakti is the strengthening of our resolve by focusing our energies towards it. We can use affirmations and visualisation to strengthen our resolve. A Sankalp is not a [...]

By | September 25th, 2017|Knowledge Articles, Sankalp/Resolution, Total Yoga, Yoga in Daily Life|Comments Off on Exploring Sankalpa (resolution)