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So you think you hate yoga...

Updated: Apr 14, 2021

I know what it's like.

You hear the amazing experiences people have in yoga, you see how much yoga can help transform your body and your life, and naturally you want to give it a go!


You load up a youtube video and hit the mat for the first time and BAM! This is not what you thought it was going to be.

You're sweating, the teacher is mean and you start to think, "yoga just isn't for me.".


Well my friend I'm here to tell you, yoga is for you!

You just haven’t found the right style yet.




Yoga Styling


Yoga has pretty much exploded into our western world. Now you don't have to walk too far to bump into a yoga teacher offering anything from more traditional yoga, to the more bizarre, like goat yoga (that's right.. yoga.. with goats...)


But this has made it extremely confusing for beginners to find their place in the yoga world and meaning a lot of people just end up going to yoga at their gym, which quite often can be where the most bad experiences happen.


So let's take a look at some of the different styles of yoga and figure out which is right for you.


 

Hatha Yoga


I would say this is a great one for beginners! Hatha focuses on the asana (poses) giving you plenty of time to get into each asana as well as time in them. This way you can get comfortable in each posture as well as beginning to find your inner yogi breath.



Vinyasa Yoga


Imagine this as the dance class of yoga. Vinyasa tends to be much faster than Hatha and incorporates continuous movement between the postures. Depending on the teacher it can be a super fun way to get your body moving or it can be a straight up sweaty cardio work out! If you're just starting out I would definitely find someone offering beginner flows or spend a little time getting comfortable with the basic yoga asanas before jumping into this style.



Ashtanga Yoga


What I like to think of as the Godfather of yoga. If you like structure and want a physically demanding practice, this is the style for you. Ashtanga (meaning 8 limbed yoga) is made up of six series going from beginner up to advanced. Classes usually follow a specific sequence which is really helpful when you are learning as repetition allows your body to get used to the movements.



Yin Yoga


If you want your practice to be all about the chill this is the style for you! Yin yoga incorporates long holds in deep stretching postures, usually involving bolsters, blocks, cushions, blankets.. anything comfy really! This is also a great style if you want to increase flexibility or find some tension release.



Kundalini Yoga


This focuses much more on the spiritual side of yoga. Classes usually involve chanting, singing and breathing exercises. The aim of this form of yoga is to awaken the energy that sits at the base of your spine (kundalini). Allowing it to rise up your charka points, awakening your being and achieving enlightenment. Of course this form isn't for everyone but with an open mind these classes can be extremely fun and rejuvenating.



Hot Yoga


Unless you own a sauna in your home this is a class you have to take at a specific studio. In each class you make your way through a series of asanas (usually 26) in a room heated to 40°c. Hot yoga can feel amazing as the heat helps increase your flexibility as well as sweating out all your bodies impurities. Definitely one to give a try!



 

This is just the tip of the iceberg of yoga styles available and I'm sure the list grows ever longer each day.


Perhaps one of these will be the gateway to your yoga journey or perhaps one day you'll find a dog yoga class down the road from you which sparks that love.


The main thing to remember is to approach each class with an open mind and open heart. Go, flow, see what happens and you never know, you might just realise you don't hate yoga after all.



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