Yoga decoder: different strokes for different folks

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With a bit of daily practice, you’ll reap a whole range of health benefits

Yoga – the practice that looks great on the ‘Gram and offers a range of benefits to overall health – seems daunting in the beginning but with a bit of effort every day, you can discover a range of motion you never knew you had. In this article we’ve outlined the various types of yoga and outline the benefits, and highlighted a few considerations.

The right teacher plays a role
If you’re already a gym member you can probably take a class there to try it out, although the teachers could be quite new and looking to build on an existing training skillset. If you want to concentrate exclusively on yoga as a practice, yoga studios often have highly qualified teachers who teach yoga as their sole focus.

Yoga is a very personal practice and while all poses are considered safe, working with a teacher to manage any injuries or problems so you can perform the modified poses carefully.

You don’t need a lot of special equipment

It is highly recommended to purchase your own mat, for hygiene reasons and because it’s great to keep on hand at home if you want to practice a few poses each day outside of class time.

Yoga mats have come along in leaps and bounds, allowing students to make their choice based on their thickness, size and color. Generally, yoga mats are made from PVC and newer, more eco-friendly mats are made from recycled rubber – something to avoid if you have a latex allergy.

PVC yoga mats tend to be more “sticky” which means they offer greater traction to help you your balance as you move between poses. These mats only help with this when they are clean, so regular maintenance is necessary.

Deciding on what type of yoga is right for you

Hatha yoga
Hatha yoga is considered one of the best classes for beginners because it slower moving. It involves breath, body, and the mind, incorporating different poses and meditation.

Power yoga
If you want a high-energy session with pumping music, power yoga offers a class with a lot of movement. Established in the 80s, it has remained popular decades on.

Ashtanga yoga
For students that require structure to their workouts could benefit greatly for attending an Ashtanga yoga class. Owing to the pace of the class, you’ll get really strong really fast!

Iyengar yoga
Iyengar yoga places its focus on proper alignment and offers students the chance to perfect their form, improving their overall posture and balance.

Hot yoga
This one raises the most debate – classes take place in studios in a heated environment that can reach around 40 degrees Celsius, which some students simply don’t enjoy. It may not be the best option for students with a sensitivity to heat or certain medical conditions.

Yoga is for everyone. You don’t have to be flexible to start, and it’s not “too difficult” or “not a real workout.” It’s for every lifestyle and can fit into every schedule. You just have to make the decision to try!

Healthy Living is a frequently updated content section brought to you by the Saudi Sports for All Federation. In the spirit of supporting our #HealthyActiveCommunity, we’re sharing tips around wellness, physical activity and more!

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