Going through a flow of poses can be either a spiritual sweat session or a special kind of torture. The key to filfillment: finding the style that complements your fitness goals and your mood.
Yoga is kind of like sex. (And not just because of the interesting positions.)
For a practice rooted in simplicity, it has become a tad bit complicated and intimidating (like Bikram and Kivamukti) to general (like flow and restorative). With the increasing number of choices in the yoga world, new students could definitely be overwhelmed.
But also like sex, the endless options mean you never have to settle for a lacklusters session or the same variety every week. After all, sometimes you want it fast, other times slow, sometimes you want a lot of talking, sometimes you want silence. Here, we help you find the right practive for your mood so you walk away satisfied.
Yoga Fast Flows
In the yoga world, classes abound for women (and men) looking to move quickly, slim down and maybe fast-forward through most of the chants and meditations. Classes in this group which tend to have names like Dynamic flow and Power Yoga are heavy on speedy sequences, keep the music modern (think Adele and Prince remixes, not Enya), and take more creative liberties with their poses and sequences.
Some of the boom on this end of the spectrum can be considered good for those who want to add yoga into their routine but crave an equivalent to the sweet drenched endorphin rush that they get from their cardio kickboxing class.
If you love the heart pumping muscle-building benefits but want something more traditional, Bikram may be more your style. It always flows through the same 26 postures every class but in a streaming hot studio (upwards of 105 degrees!). It should be noted that “hot yoga” is not synonymous with Bikram. Other heated varieties are typically a bit cooler and take more freedom witth poses. (Some people say they are cheap imitation of Bikram, while others say they’re a passable alternative. You decide.
If you can’t stand the heat, look for vinyasa-based classes, which move through sequences of various speeds but focus more on your body position. So instead of just calling out poses, your teacher will actively adjust you and stress different cues (like “inner thighs back and wide” or “active hands and feet”).
The reason some teacher are so hand-on. It can ofter be hard to understand which way to bend or twist by just listening to verbal cues. This way, teachers are able to place you in exactly the right positon so you know how it’s supposed to feel. (If you prefer not to be physically adjusted, you can always tell them before the class starts.)