Styles of Yoga

Yoga postures are all part of the third limb of Yoga which describes the physical aspect of Yoga practice. There are a wide range of Yoga styles which derive from ancient Indian practice and they are listed here as a summary and dictionary of the style terms for the students' benefits.


Ashtanga Yoga Style Thumbnail

Ashtanga Yoga (pronounced "ash-tang-ga") is based on classical Indian yoga practice and is vigorous and physical. A class follows a specific sequence of postures, with the breath linking the poses in a vinyasa yoga style. There is typically an opening sequence, one of the six main series, a back bending sequence and a finishing sequence practice always ends with savasana (corpse pose). Levels: Intermediate, Advanced.


Bikram Yoga Style Thumbnail

Bikram Yoga (pronounced "bick-ram") classes are conducted in heated and humid rooms. A class will follow a rigorous set of 26 poses, each performed twice. Students will typically sweat profusely in these classes. Levels: Intermediate, Advanced.


Hatha Yoga Thumbnail

Hatha Yoga (pronounced "hath-ah") is a generic term for all modern types of physical yoga. All other yoga styles are types of hatha yoga. Classes are typically gentle and concentrate on breathing and classical yoga postures. Level: beginner, Intermediate, Advanced.

Hot Yoga

Hot Yoga Thumbnail

Hot Yoga classes are conducted in heated and humid rooms. It is type of Yoga based on Bikram Yoga but that has some small deviation from the set of poses prescribed by the Bikram system. The inventor of the Bikram style forbids the use of the word Bikram unless teachers follow his prescribed set of poses. Levels: Intermediate, Advanced.


Iyengar Yoga Thumbnail

Iyengar Yoga (pronounced "eye-eng-ga") is based on classical yoga practice with a focus on perfect alignment in a pose. A series of props are used to assist the student in attaining and holding a pose these include: blocks, blankets, bolsters, straps inclines and rope walls. The classes are not typically vigorous but effort is required to align the body in the posture. Level: beginner, Intermediate, Advanced.


Prenatal Yoga  Thumbnail

Prenatal Yoga is typically hatha yoga adapted for expectant mothers at all stages of pregnancy. The classes are gentle and focus on building and maintaining strength and flexibility during pregnancy. Level: beginner, Intermediate, Advanced.

Pure Suthee

Pure Suthee Yoga Thumbnail

Pure Suthee Yoga (pronounced "pure soot-tee") is based on a range of styles including VinyasaAsthangaIyengar and Sivanandha. The style is flowing and the poses are synchronised with the breath allowing the breath to assist in creating flexibility. The breath is used to create a choreography of poses and correct alignment is encouraged as in Iyengar but props are not used. The classes always start with breathing exercises such as alternate nostril breathing (Nadi Shodhana) which prepares the student for yoga practice. Classes typically vary and a wide range of poses will be included. Level: beginner, Intermediate, Advanced.


Sivanandha Yoga Thumbnail

Sivanandha Yoga (pronounced "shiva-nan-da") is based on classical yoga practice but is gentle and focuses on the breath. A class will typically start with breathing exercises and sun salutations then move through a series of twelve prescribed poses. It is a gentle style of yoga that encourages relaxation, the class will end with savasana (corpse pose). Level: beginner, Intermediate, Advanced.


Vinyasa Yoga Thumbnail

Vinyasa Yoga (pronounced "vin-yah-sah") is based on classical yoga practice but emphasises a flowing movement through a series of poses which are synchronised with the breath. It is derived from Ashtanga Yoga but does not follow the same sequence of postures and each class will typically introduce a range of different poses. It can be gentle or vigorous depending on the class and the teacher, but the breath is always used to connect the poses. Level: beginner, Intermediate, Advanced.


Yin Yoga Thumbnail

Yin Yoga is a slow and gentle style which focuses on holding a pose for a prolonged period often between two and five minutes. There are typically about thirty poses which are based on Hatha Yoga but with little exertion. The majority of the poses are sitting or lying poses and while the student is relaxing in the pose the teacher typically talks about yoga. . Level: beginner, Intermediate, Advanced.


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