You’ve vowed to make your life more calm, more flexible, maybe even more zen. But attempting to choose a class from the various yoga styles leaves your mind twisted into a virtual pretzel!
Never fear, I’m here to help explain the ins and outs of six of the most popular yoga styles out there so you can hit the mat with peace of mind and body, with the yoga style that’s ideal for your physical and spiritual needs…
1. Iyengar Yoga
Iyengar yoga, named for its creator B.K.S. Iyengar, focuses on precise alignment and accessibility to all practitioners. Iyengar is an ideal practice if you suffer from an existing injury, or chronic back or neck pain because of its use of various yoga tools (i.e., straps, blocks, blankets, and bolsters) to minimize risk of injury while providing ample joint and muscle support.
I recommend you consult a doctor before taking up any new form of exercise. Once you gain your doctor’s blessing, beginners can look to restorative Iyengar classes, which guide you through the asanas (poses) gradually with gentle and slow-paced breath work (pranayama) to help develop strength and flexibility as you gradually progress from basic to more complex poses.