Power Yoga - Power Up with Power Yoga.
Power Yoga Power Yoga is the Western version of the Indian AshtangaYoga which emphasizes developing one's physical flexibility and nurtures the desire for self-discipline.The name Power Yoga says it all. It is one of the several types of Yoga that has the same potential of emulating a rigorous full-body workout and promotes mental stability and concentration. Be forewarned though that Power Yoga practice may hurt at first.The concept of Power Yoga was introduced to the West by devotees of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois, a renowned Sanskrit scholar who inspired Western Yogis with his Ashtanga Yoga style and philosophies. It's a small wonder why Power Yoga is considered as the Western version of the Indian Ashtanga Yoga. The term "Power Yoga," however, was coined by Ashtanga Yoga teacher Beryl Bendere Birch, author of the widely-read book "Power Yoga: the Practice."Although Power Yoga is a shortened and modified version of Ashtanga Yoga, it also borrows certain aspects from other Yoga practices like Bikram Yoga and Iyengar Yoga. Some of those aspects are as follows:
Power Yoga requires the execution of basic Yoga Poses, like in Bikram Yoga, which guarantees an energetic workout and offers basic challenges that can be done even by beginners in Yoga.Power Yoga also emphasizes on the proper form in executing Yoga Poses as well as perfecting it by holding the pose longer, improving the endurance and flexibility of the person. This is an aspect adapted from the Iyengar Yoga.
Power Yoga is done by doing a series of Yoga Poses while synchronizing one's breathing patterns to each movement, or Vinyasa, resulting in actions with perfect unity and grace. In the eyes of a person who does not practice Yoga, the movement may seem soft and free-flowing, comparable to a trancelike dance. But in the perspective of a Power Yogi, the process is like a vigorous exercise, pushing and contorting every limb to its limit while maintaining a strong sense of inner peace and concentration to pull off each move flawlessly and gracefully.
Keep in mind that the transitions of the Yoga Poses are done in a slow yet steady pace. Some poses are even held longer than the required five breaths. This is the aspect of Power Yoga that raises one's physical endurance and the ability to focus on one task for a long period of time without breaking one's concentration.The poses involved in Power Yoga are linked on the backbone of Sun Salutation Pose. Hence, anybody who is interested in doing the poses of the former Yoga exercise should at least be knowledgeable of the latter.Warm-ups are usually done before a session of Power Yoga to relax and stretch the muscles of the body. In addition to that, Power Yoga is usually done in a heated room for a Yogi to achieve optimum muscle flexibility. This is because the moves involved in it can be very painful to successfully pull off to those who are new to Power Yoga. Therefore, it is imperative to condition the body before going through this rough and rigorous type of Yoga. This feature of Power Yoga limits the Yogis to those who are physically fit and are not suffering from chronic ailments.But even though Power Yoga demands certain requirements for a person to fully enjoy it, a lot of enthusiasts are still loyal to the practice. It's actually attracting more and more people to try it out. Here are some benefits that can be drawn out from Power Yoga.
It bolsters strength, stamina, and flexibility.
It improves one's ability to focus.
It's a great way to release tension and anxiety.
It helps a person maintain proper posture.
It tones your body well.
It's a good way to remove bodily toxins through sweat.
It serves as a great training for athletes.
It helps improve a person's performance in certain sports like Cycling, Golf, football, and swimming.
Those are some of the reasons why most Health clubs nowadays promote Power Yoga and a direct transition from Aerobics to Yoga.But despite its vigorous approach in Yoga, Power Yoga still focuses on the general aim of Classical Yoga, which is to unite the body, mind, and spirit. It uses traditional Yoga practices in order to tap in to the inner core of one's power and to help this individual to recognize the different levels of power which are:
The physical power which is developed through the poses in Power Yoga resulting in an improvement of the body's natural strength and health.
The mental power or the willpower, which is disciplined during the course of the practice as it clears the mind of unorganized thoughts and helps the self to concentrate on a single task.
The spiritual power, the driving force behind one's physical and mental power, is nurtured, allowing complete mastery of one's thought and actions.
Finally, it is through Power Yoga that a person can achieve total unity since it connects the body, mind, and spirit in the deepest level.
Power Yoga Flows for Balance
Balance between the mind and body is one of the primary goals of yoga practice. In fact, many who suffer from stress and anxiety turn to yoga to relieve their mind’s trouble as well as harness the physical manifestations of stress like over eating, weight gain, panic attacks and even depression.Power yoga’s emphasis on physically challenging poses can also help students find their balance. Because of the way power yoga highlights difficult poses, it utilizes several repetitions of balance poses that are meant to help yogis find their center. Balance poses typically require full-body static strength, which help yogis engage the internal with the external.
Flows for Balance
Many yoga instructors start their classes out with a warm up, usually selecting one of the variations of the sun salutation series. These series are designed to generate energy and create heat to keep muscles supple, but they also combine standing and balance poses. As a result, these series are a good place to start work on balance flows.One of the biggest challenges for the balance poses is to get the foundation right. The foundation of a balance pose is the part or parts of the body that touch the ground, and if the feet, for example, are not aligned in a balancing asana, the rest of the posture will be misaligned as well, making it difficult to become centered.In the Warrior II pose (Virabhadrasana II), for example, the heels should be in a straight line, with one foot pointing forward and the other pointing 90 degrees outward. Power yoga enthusiasts engage the arms, core and legs in a warrior pose, but the foundational elements begin with the feet. In this pose, the practitioner should bend forward until the knee is over the ankle, and in some cases the thigh is parallel to the floor. The knee should not extend past the foot, so that the shin forms a right angle to the ground. Students should distribute equal amounts of weight on both feet.
Sometimes it helps students who struggle with balance to shift their weight from front to back in order to become aware of the extremes of imbalance.Beginner yoga students may find this process difficult, since correct alignment requires that even the toes be in sync with the pose. It is in no way a simple thing to be aware of the entire body during even a simple breathing pose, much less one that requires concentration and balance. However, continued practice will slowly realize a fuller awareness of self and balance.
Can Power Yoga be Practiced as Therapy?
Power yoga is a generic form of physical yoga that tends to emphasize physical fitness over yogic philosophy and wisdom. However, although power yoga attempts to be a challenging series of poses that even the most in-shape or athletic beginners will struggle with, part of achieving and maintaining physical fitness means that most power yoga instructors incorporate poses to balance the mind with the body. Often power yoga, despite its focus on the practice as exercise, does concern itself with personal transcendence, a form of self-actualization.
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