Yoga can get overwhelming and may sound complicated to beginners. Truly, there are a lot of different types of yoga exercises that one needs to be familiar with.
There are over 100 different forms of yoga and each varies in intensity and pacing. The most common and uncomplicated yoga practice those beginners will truly enjoy would be hatha yoga.
Ready your mats and channel your inner yogi as this will carry you through into different facts you need to know before getting started:
What is Hatha?
Hatha is a Sanskrit word that means “force.” In yoga practice, Hatha refers to the powerful effects of techniques that move energy upward through the body by force.
This practice has grown in popularity in the West which is known for its impressive effects on the body. Hatha is effective in the regulation of breathing, posture, diet, stress reduction, and purificatory processes.
How is it different from Vinyasa?
Vinyasa, or flow yoga, follows a series of poses at a quick clip, Hatha classes typically guide practitioners through postures at a slower pace with more guidance on how to do each pose correctly.
Results from the 2016 meta-analysis on hatha yoga suggest that it can be effective to reduce anxiety. People with elevated levels of anxiety benefitted the most in the said research.
Compared to high-intensity training, yoga, in general, maybe a low-impact workout, but there are studies that can suggest that specifically, hatha yoga can also engage and develop core muscles.
In a study conducted in 2016, just 21 days of Hatha yoga training led to improvements to participants in core muscle strength and balance.
According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrated Health (NCCIH), researchers said for several conditions like low-back pain and neck pain, yoga exercises have had promising results.
Furthermore, yoga is among the options that the American College of Physicians recommends for the first-line treatment of chronic low-back pain.
NCCIH also stated that it can help people lose weight, quit smoking, relieve menopause symptoms, manage symptoms with chronic diseases, and aids sleep management.
For beginners, experts suggest settling into simpler forms and avoiding headstands, shoulder stands, the lotus position, and forceful breathing.
What is a Hatha Yoga Practice like?
Hatha is a common type of yoga that does not necessarily have complex forms.
Breath. The practice involves breath, body, and mind, and classes are usually 45 minutes to 90 minutes of breathing, yoga poses, and meditation. Most Hatha classes start by centering on your breathing or pranayama.
Poses. After the different breathwork techniques, a series of poses or asanas will let you improve your balance, flexibility, and strength. Expect to learn different poses and flows from lying on your mat up to standing up. As you go through the process, you might encounter different yoga lingos like asana or seat; chaturanga or low plank; and downward dog where you enable your body to form an inverted v.
Meditation. Yoga is commonly known for its meditation exercises. Most classes end with a short period of meditation and relaxation, where you can listen to your body, focus on your breathing by centering yourself to the ground. In doing Hatha exercise, it is slow and low-impact, thus making you feel more aware of your body.
Hatha is without a doubt, worth a try in making your fitness journey more adventurous and effective.