They are described by the Sage Patanjali as: Yama (moral codes), Niyama (self purification with discipline), Asana (postures), Pranayama (breath control), Pratyahara (Sense withdrawal), Dharana (concentration), Dhyana (meditation) and Samadi (superconsiousness). These branches support and reinforce each other. The first four branches are externally oriented limbs (Bahiranga Yoga). Asana practice must be established for proper practice of Pranayama and is a key to the development of the Yama and Niyama. Once they are firmly rooted, the last four, which are internally oriented limbs (Antaranga Yoga) will evolve over time.
through which it's possible to realize
the full human potential in creating
a vibrant, healthy body and mind."
The Ashtanga Vinyasa series is said to have its origin in an ancient text called the Yoga Koranta, compiled by Vamana Rishi, which Krishnamacharya received from his Guru Rama Mohan Brahmachari at Mount Kailash, Himalayas in the early 20th century.
Ashtanga Yoga, when practiced in its correct sequential order will gradually lead the practitioners to rediscover his or her fullest potential across all levels of human consciousness - physical, psychological and spiritual.
This method of yoga involves synchronizing the breath (Ujjayi Pranayama) with a progressive series of postures (Asanas) and gazing point (Dhristi). We gain contol of the senses , a deep awareness of ourselves and a process that produce intense internal heat and a profuse, purifying sweat that detoxifies the muscles and organs. The result is improved circulation, a light and strong body, and a deeper calmness of the mind.
literally means eight limbs
means breath synchronized movement.
The breath is the heart of this discipline, and links asana to asana in a precise order. Through the synchronization of movement with the breath, and practicing the Mula and Uddiyana Bandhas (locks), an intense internal heat is produced.
This heat purifies the muscles and organs, expelling unwanted toxins as well as releasing beneficial hormones and minerals, which can nourish the body when the sweat is massaged back into the skin. The breath regulates the vinyasa movement and ensures efficient circulation of blood, resulting in a light and strong body.
Through correct breathing (Ujjayi Pranayama), postures (Asana), and gazing points (Dhristi), control of the senses and deep awareness are gained. By maintaining this discipline with regularity and devotion, one will acquire steadiness of the body and mind.
The Primary Series (Yoga Chikitsa) detoxifies and aligns the entire body. The Intermediate Series (Nadi Shodhana) purifies the nervous system by opening up and clearing the energy channels. The advanced A, B, C, and D (Sthira Bhaga) integrate the strength and grace of the practice, requiring higher levels of flexibility and humility.
Each level is to be fully developed before proceeding to the next, and the sequential order of asana is to be meticulously followed. Each posture is a preparation for the next, developing the strength and balance required to move further.
of sequences in Asthanga System
all is coming
It is said that where there is no effort there is no benefit. Strength, stamina and sweat are unique aspects of this traditional Yoga. This demanding practice requires considerable effort and taps into and circulates a vital energy throughout the body, strengthening and purifying the nervous system. The mind then becomes lucid, clear and precise. There is a natural progression towards a meditative state as one harmonises postures (Asana), breathing (Pranayama) and awareness (Samyama) into a symbolic whole. Each element deepens and enriches the effect of the other, until one reaches a stage where there is no separation between mind, body and breath & in this way, Vinyasa unites Hatha and Raja yoga in a simple manner,
Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga is one of the most complete & scientific systems of Yoga. The challenge offered by the Vinyasa system is as much mental as physical, demanding a continuous level of concentration to maintain the momentum from one posture to the next. This does not mean you must be super-fit to practice. It does, however, require discipline and commitment. The aim of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga is to naturally still the fluctuations of the mind through dynamic movements and the breath, not to achieve gymnastic goals. To reach such a state of stillness and harmony through sitting meditation requires a dedication and tenacity rarely available to people living in this secular world.