Hatha Yoga: characteristics and benefits

Hatha Yoga: characteristics and benefits

Today, the practicemany types of yogaspread. Depending on our goals, we should decide for a particular type of yoga. If you want to practice a controlled yoga, centered on the elasticity of the musculature, Hatha Yoga is for you.

This form of yoga moves away from other types such as raja yoga (mental yoga) or karma yoga (more active yoga) because it focuses on the preparation of the body before meditation. Stretching the body is his priority.This is the best known and most practiced yoga in the West. This is why he is sometimes considered to be distorted.

What is the Hatha Yoga?

This form of yoga is practiced in any Western gym or center. In fact,it ended up turning into a set of stretches that follow or precede another type of workout.As we all know, yoga is an Eastern religious practice. And it was imported to the West to be used as an additional sport discipline.

Hatha Yoga consists of several stages or parts.The first is the postural part, theasana. The next steps, more related to relaxation and meditation, have often been omitted by Western masters to give a yoga class focused on dynamic postures that do not follow a fixed series.

The postures of theHatha Yoga

The differentasana Hatha Yoga often have some postural difficulty. To dominate them depends on our balance and our flexibility. Nevertheless,this kind of yoga does not require any physical preparationand his practice is not restricted by age, sex, or physical condition. It is for this reason that it is a very popular discipline.

Among the most common postures are those related to meditation,like the lotus posture or the child's posture. Some are more related to physical aspects, such as cobra posture or bow posture.

Lotus Posture

This is one of the most representative postures of yoga in the West.It is achieved by crossing the legs and placing each foot on the opposite thigh(right foot on the left thigh and vice versa). This posture is difficult to practice at first because it requires a lot of flexibility in the legs and a lot of strength in the back (which must stay straight).

Posture of the child

This posture is much more accessible and is also used for meditation.It involves leaning the body forward while sitting on your knees. Our spine is thus curved and relaxed. We must then extend our arms forward and press our forehead against the ground.

Cobra Posture

The cobra posture is one of the most famous yoga.To achieve it, you have to lie down on your stomach then, with the help of the palms of your hands, raise the trunk to the level of the hips (if possible).This is not a simple posture and it requires a lot of strength in the trunk (the central, lateral and lumbar abdominal muscles).

Posture of the bow

This posture is successful when,once on your stomach, we can grab our ankles. The arms and legs are so high.This posture is also not simple but it helps to strengthen the back muscles.

If we want to practice it properly, Hatha Yoga first involves a warm-up phase, with postures like the sun salutation. Then you have to practiceasanaand, finally, meditation.

The benefits of Hatha Yoga

This form of yoga has many benefits, which is why it is so prevalent in our society.

  • First of all,it does not require special physical preparation.It is therefore accessible to all ages, regardless of gender and constitution
  • It is a good way toincrease or maintain our elasticitybecause the practice ofasanais slow and controlled
  • It also brings usstrength and muscle toning.To perform postures, we use muscles that we are not used to strengthening
  • When you have more control,practice can help us increase lung capacitybecause breathing exercises are an important part of this discipline

Hatha Yoga is, therefore, a very complete exercise that helps us train our whole bodydifferent ways. Thanks to him, we do not just exercise: we can also relieve or control lesions, reduce stress and, not insignificant, share moments with other people.

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