Styles of Yoga: Vinyasa
Most newcomers to yoga may know that it is an ancient practice, but might not be aware that yoga comes in a wide variety of styles and flavors. The traditions date back at least as far as Patanjali, the author of the Yoga Sutras, in 400 BC. As with any ancient tradition, it has evolved, grown, and spawned numerous forms over the years.
Participants in Kimi Hugli’s yoga classes will find a selection of styles that fit the various needs of modern practitioners, including:
Each class also includes a short meditation before and after. As Kimi says, five minutes of meditation at the beginning can help you to “let go of all the things outside the room and outside this moment and come into yourself. Focus on your breath… take those first few minutes to really let go of all the busy-ness that we have in our lives, to just be present and to really feel what the body might need.” Likewise, a few minutes of meditation at the end of the class helps your body to integrate all the relaxation and good feelings that yoga has inspired.
Vinyasa Yoga, sometimes called Power Yoga or Flow Yoga, uses breath-guided movement to create a flowing dance-like quality of yoga. These are somewhat more challenging and athletic classes.
Vinyasa translates roughly to “to place in a special way.” Most yogis will come across some version of a sun salutation in these classes, but that’s not the main defining factor of a vinyasa, power, or flow class. It is defined by the flow of movement, the flow from pose to pose. Many have said that vinyasa, power, or flow, creates a movement meditation, where the flow of the movement takes the thoughts off the mind and just allows you to be in the moment with the movement. Vinyasa is also about the transitions between poses, using the breath to make it steady and even, so that it really does feel and look like you’re dancing.
I enjoy a good vinyasa class, it can be a wonderful place for creativity, and since I was a dancer, I really gravitated towards the flow like quality of this style of class.