6 Different Styles Of Yoga And When To Practice Each One

6 Different Styles Of Yoga And When To Practice Each One

No matter if you're a beginner or someone who's been doing the activity for years, it's great to become familiar with numerous kinds of yoga and the best times to do them.


Whether you're new to yoga or you've been to your share of group classes, this post will teach you about some of the different schools of yoga and when you're likely to benefit from them. Here are the basics around the main schools of yoga:

1. Hatha Yoga

Hatha yoga is the kind likely most familiar to people in the West. It's a broad term for yoga involving physical poses and is a good option for beginners because the pace of the movements is slower than some of the other choices on this list. You hold each pose for a few breaths before progressing.

Consider trying a Hatha yoga class if your goal is to improve flexibility or you often feel overly stiff from a desk job.

According to the results of a small study, the participants went through a Hatha yoga program twice a week for five months and saw improvements in flexibility afterward.

2. Ashtanga Yoga

Something that sets Ashtanga yoga apart from other types is that it matches certain movements to your breath and you do them in the same order each time. There are six groups of movements (categorized as primary, intermediate and four advanced levels) and you don't move onto the next one until mastering the first.

If you're looking for a more intense type of yoga that could help you gain strength and get an excellent physical workout, try Ashtanga. People who do it say it helps them build muscle and could even be a contributor to weight loss. Since Ashtanga yoga is one of the more intense forms, it's a kind that is practiced in hot yoga studios pretty often.

Hot yoga is not a new practice but it's recently gained incredible popularity and the classes are rapidly becoming more widespread. So, if you live in a place that you imagine will have limited yoga class options, there's a good chance that you'd still be able to find a place that offers Ashtanga yoga in a temperature-controlled studio.

3. Iyengar Yoga

Do you struggle with chronic back pain and notice that the problem negatively impacts the things you like to do? If so, Iyengar Yoga could help. It's a specific kind of Hatha Yoga that focuses on maintaining the body's alignment while controlling its breath.

Plus, there's no need to worry about initially having trouble holding the poses properly. People who take part in Iyengar Yoga often depend on props such as belts or blocks to help them perform the poses, making the risk of strain goes down. Give this type of yoga a try if you have limited mobility or are recovering from an injury, too. It's highly adaptive and teachers can modify the movements to meet your needs.

4. Bikram Yoga

Bikram yoga is the original kind of hot yoga. Bikram Choudhury founded it several decades ago and developed a system of going through 26 yoga poses and two breathing exercises per 90-minute session. All classes occur in a room kept at least 95 degrees Fahrenheit with a humidity level of around 40%.

This is the best yoga method to try if you're feeling confident in your abilities and aren't a complete beginner. It could also be a good pick for you want to focus on heart health. Research showed that people in an experiment had improved blood vessel health after doing Bikram yoga. But, one surprising conclusion of the study was that the temperature of the room did not affect those benefits.

So, if you like the Bikram yoga poses but get a bit overwhelmed by the sweltering environment, consider doing the poses at home in a setting with less intense temperatures.

5. Kundalini Yoga

Kundalini is a holistic, comprehensive type of yoga that combines movements and meditation. It uses kriyas, which are groups of postures, breaths, and sounds meant for specific outcomes. Each kriya has instructions about how long to hold each pose and even how to focus your gaze. So, if consistency comforts you, Kundalini yoga could meet your needs.

Research also shows a link between Kundalini yoga and improvements in memory. A small study of older adults revealed that when combined with separate meditation, weekly Kundalini yoga was as effective as memory enhancement training (such as crossword puzzles) for boosting performance on verbal memory tasks.

Having a better memory brings advantages at any age and there's no harm in reaping them when you're younger.

6. Kripalu Yoga

When life feels overwhelming and you need relief, Kripalu yoga could help you discover inner peace. It teaches you to develop an inner focus while paying attention to your body's limits. But, instead of getting frustrated by poses that are too hard for your current capabilities, you'll learn to listen to your body and not push it too hard.

As such, Kripalu yoga could help you develop a more positive body image. It also emphasizes that you should love everything about yourself. That's hard sometimes, especially if you're extremely self-motivated and perhaps too hard on yourself.

By becoming a Kripalu yoga devotee, you could realize that it's possible to tap into an internal stillness whenever you feel life's pressures.

This list shows that even if you make a general statement such as "I do yoga," a person cannot automatically tell precisely what's meant by that unless you go into more specifics about the types you prefer. When you want to venture into the world of yoga for the first time or spice up your routine with a new practice and movement, this can help to navigate you on where to go.

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A list Of 15 Inspiring Words That Mean So Much

A single word can mean a lot.

Positivity is so important in life. A lot of times we always go to quotes for empowerment but I have realized that just one word can be just as powerful. Here is a list of inspiring words.

1. Worthy

Realizing your self-worth is important. Self-worth can really make or break a persons personality. Always know that you are worthy of respect. And also, never compare yourself to others.

2. Courage

Be courageous in life. Life has so many opportunities so do not be scared to grasp any opportunity that comes your way. You have the ability to do anything you have your heart and mind set to do, even the things that frighten you.

3. Enough

When you are feeling down and feeling that nothing you do is ever good enough, know that you are more than enough. And yes there is always room for improvement but when it comes to my self-worth I always have to remind myself that I am enough.

4. Blessed

Be thankful. A lot of times we forget how blessed we are. We focus so much on stress and the bad things that are going on in our lives that we tend to forget all of the beautiful things we have in life.

5. Focus

Focus on your goals, focus on positive things, and focus on the ones you love. Do not focus on things that will keep you from not reaching your goals and people that do not have good intentions for your life.

6. Laugh

Laughing is one of the best forms of medicine. Life is truly better with laughter.

7. Warrior

Through the good and the bad you are a warrior. Be strong, soldier.

8. Seek

Seek new things. Allow yourself to grow in life. Do not just be stuck.

9. Faith

During the bad times, no matter the circumstances, have faith that everything will be all right.

10. Live

Start living because life is honestly way too short. Live life the way you want to live. Do not let anyone try to control you.

11. Enjoy

Enjoy everything that life has to offer. Enjoy even the littlest of things because, as I said before, life is short. And plus, there is no time to live life with regrets.

12. Believe

Believe in yourself and never stop. Believing in yourself brings so many blessings and opportunities in your life.

13. Serendipity

A lot of times we look for things to fill an empty void that we have. Usually what we are looking for comes when we are not looking at all. Your serendipity will come.

14. Create

Share your ideas with the world. Creativity brings change to your life. However you chose to use your creativity do not be scared to show your intelligence, talent, and passion.

15. Love

The world is already full of so much hate, so love unconditionally with all your heart.

Cover Image Credit: Tanveer Naseer

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I Was Screamed At For Telling Someone To 'Take A Deep Breath' And The Next Day, I Become A Certified Yoga Instructor

Perhaps people will now take me more seriously when I suggest some deep breathing?


Emotions are such interesting factors that can highly influence the way that we behave. When you take the time to become mindful of your emotions as they arise, it is actually a really insightful experience in that you are more aware of when your emotions are clouding your ability to make decisions. Strong emotions can easily take control of your entire body in ways that can either be a help or a hindrance. Regardless of the positive or negative outcome, it is still important that you are aware of your emotions.

Strong emotions on either end of the spectrum can prohibit you from thinking to the best of your ability. Can you recall a moment when you were so overcome with ecstatic joy or pure anger that when you tried to focus on something else, your thoughts were filtered by the way that you were feeling? This is completely normal and happens to everyone frequently, so that is nothing to worry about. However, an issue arises when you lack the ability to break away from those feelings.

You are not your emotions. The acknowledgment of how you are feeling is a necessary step in learning how to deal with whatever emotion is plaguing you at the moment; however, completely embodying the way you are feeling can be restricting as it closes your mind from remaining open to any outside perspective.

Once, I had a friend who was very upset and relaying those inner thoughts and feelings to me in a manner which was not considerate of how I would be receiving their current state. (That is not the point, however, it did put me in a difficult position as I let them continue to erratically expel their negativity.) Regardless, it was quite apparent how their emotions were inhibiting the effectiveness of their communication choices. This puts the person on the receiving end in a challenging position when attempting to figure out what to do. How long do you allow somebody to be a victim of their unmanaged emotions when you can clearly see that they are not only negatively impacting themselves but also sending that energy into the lives of others?

In my situation, I quickly and calmly said, "You need to calm down; just take a deep breath." Eyes flashing with hardly enough time to think about what I had said, they screamed, "No! Don't tell me what to do!"

Obviously, they heard that there were words coming out of my mouth, but did they truly hear what I was saying?

It was at this moment that I truly realized how important social-emotional learning skills are. We all get upset sometimes; the negative feelings of anger, frustration, and despair are inevitable and normal to endure. What is most important is how we learn to handle these negative feelings when they enter our minds. This scenario I experienced demonstrated an eye-opening experience for me; even in my calm manner, the suggestion of something as simple as taking a deep breath infuriated this upset person even more.

I was puzzled at the moment of their reaction and I must admit that I am still puzzled even to this day as I reflect on their response to me. Perhaps I would understand the attitude-filled retaliation if I had suggested something outrageous in a tone that was also filled with anger; however, that was not the case.

Consequently, I did not have a reply to their response. I understood that the negative emotions had completely taken over this person's body and mind and that they were merely trying to alleviate their own suffering by expelling this negativity into the universe; this is not an excuse, rather it is an interpretation in an attempt for me to explain this irrational behavior. I tried my best to not absorb that energy; although, it is super challenging and most certainly changed my perspective not only about that specific individual but also about the importance of emotional regulation and human beings in general.

I realized that there was nothing I could do or say to help them; it is an intimidating notion that we are responsible for our own emotions, yet while we are experiencing strong thoughts and feelings, it is sometimes not easy to combat them. This is where social-emotional learning skills coupled with mindfulness prove to be crucial skills to have. Merely knowing about these skills is ineffective unless they are implemented in your daily life; this is when they prove to be the most impactful.

Ironically, this experience occurred the night before I was already enrolled to complete a yoga teacher training program. I must say, spending 20 hours practicing yoga, learning how to build a sequence of flowing poses, and meeting other interested yogis was definitely invigorating especially after the last evening I just had. Throughout this training, it was brought to my attention how grounding the breath can be; we are always breathing regardless of our awareness of doing so. When moments of hysteria bubble up, turning your awareness inward to the ebb and flow of your breath is helpful in reminding you that you are alive and present.

Sometimes, it is useful to have this reminder as we experience moments of discomfort. Sometimes, it is useful to have this reminder as we experience moments of excitement. And sometimes it is useful to have this reminder as we experience moments of just ordinary day-to-day life.

Thus, cultivating a mindset that allows you to feel any type of emotion as it commences, but then having the ability to remain aware of what you are enduring is important for your personal wellbeing and also how others will perceive you. Please allow yourself to feel your emotions mindfully at the moment, reflect thoughtfully once the moment has passed, and then pursue any step that you believe is necessary in order to forgive the negative actions you may have taken during that emotional moment.

And, please, always return to following your breath. It truly is helpful in bringing your awareness back to the moment instead of allowing your mind to fall victim to other factors, whether those are external or internal.

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