Ashtanga yoga is indeed a subset of the overarching practice of yoga. Ashtanga separates itself from other yoga types in its vigorous asanas or poses. Due to the difficulty of the asanas and the athleticism necessary for transition between asanas, Ashtanga yoga is a more rigorous practice and more demanding workout than other traditional yoga practices. However, Ashtanga yoga still focuses on breathing, stretching, and vinyasas.
Breathing During Ashtanga Yoga
Since Ashtanga yoga is more athletic in its asanas and vinyasas, breathing is a crucial focus. Maintaining one’s breath pace can be especially difficult during an Ashtanga yoga session, but it benefits the yogi. With heavy steady breathing, the body naturally heats its itself; it naturally opens up the lungs to their capacity; and it improves blood circulation.
Ashtanga yoga poses, like all yoga poses, aid the body in stretching its muscles. As you stretch your muscles, you improve your flexibility, strength, and balance.
Ashtanga vinyasas, or transitions, demand physical strength. During an asana, a muscle may tire from holding the pose; and during a vinyasa, muscle groups transitionally absorb the weight of the body. In this way, Ashtanga vinyasas build muscle strength.
Although Ashtanga yoga is largely rooted in traditional yoga practices, it is a more athletic form of yoga. In this way, those who’re looking to further their personal strength and flexibility may be more successful. If you’re further curious about Ashtanga yoga, feel free to check out our Ashtanga yoga info page. Here at Collierville Yoga, we offer several different Ashtanga yoga lessons, including lessons for beginners. Check out our schedule here!