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As a beginner, or even a seasoned yoga veteran, deciphering yoga studio schedules can be confusing. This is usually an understatement.The good thing is everyone has their own yoga class.
Here's a quick guide (in order from active to mature) to help you navigate the yoga maze. Don't be afraid to try different courses to find out what type of course works best for you. You may be surprised by what appeals to you.
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Ashtanga: Every class has similar movements, powerful gymnastic transitions between postures. Origin of flow Yoga/Motivation/Flow classes.
Flow yoga/Power/Vinyasa: These terms are used interchangeably for sweaty and faster exercise classes. Best for people who are already familiar with basic poses and are looking for movement.
Hatha: Colloquial term for yoga. The expected intensity is moderate to low. This is a good class for beginners and yoga enthusiasts. Hada can be a good offshoot to more advanced courses.
Iyengar: Detailed, slow instruction, lots of props (blocks, straps, supports, etc.). And a lot of teachers. Perfect for students who want to master or get back to basics.
Gentle/therapeutic: Expect a gentle and slow process with lots of time on the floor. Ideal for older, injured or just exhausted students. A solid yoga reset...
Restorative: Exhausted and in need of a nap? This is a class where you curl up on your pillow and recharge your batteries. If you think you're the best at recovery classes, think again -- you'll be surprised at how much you need a break from time to time.
Prenatal yoga: Good for anyone who is pregnant. Prenatal yoga is a great way to prepare for delivery and may even promote the health of a newborn.
Each teacher shares his/her own view of the yoga tradition, so these course descriptions serve as a general guide. Research the teacher by talking to other students, asking the front desk staff, and reading the bio on the studio website. Remember that every teacher has written their own profile, so if a teacher's language resonates with you, he or she is right for you. The chemistry between you and the teacher is more important than the type of class listed on the schedule. Find the right teacher, time, place, and soon become addicted!