When it comes to Yoga, there isn’t just one style to follow. The popular mind and body exercise has many styles, and each has its own goals, focus, and principles.
Power Yoga Explained
As mentioned above, power yoga aims to build strength and endurance in those who practice it.
It is also a good form of yoga for those who want to burn more calories. Power yoga is a form of Vinyasa yoga, and both terms are often used interchangeably.
Vinyasa yoga was developed from Ashtanga yoga and is a practice that was first established early in the 20th century.
When it comes to power yoga, the focus is on the flow between each movement rather than focusing on the poses separately. As a result, it is fast-paced and more intense than most other forms of yoga and may often feel more like an aerobics class rather than a relaxed, meditative one.
Between poses, you will move quickly and link your breathing to the different ways your body is moving.
While mindfulness is involved, power yoga is much less meditative and more dynamic.
What Are The Differences Between Power Yoga And Other Forms Of Yoga?
There are a few significant differences between power yoga and other forms of yoga.
Hatha yoga is considered an umbrella term for many common types of Yoga. This follows a slower pace, emphasizing breathing, poses, and meditation.
The flow of power yoga differs significantly from Hatha yoga, as the latter practice focuses more on getting into the correct pose and holding it. Power yoga, however, focuses on the flow between each movement, exhaling as you change into different poses.
Power yoga is practiced at a much faster pace than Hatha yoga. Hatha yoga emphasizes holding poses and breathing at a slower, restorative pace, whereas the fast-paced notion of power yoga makes it a cardiovascular exercise.
Power yoga follows many of the same postures and sequences as Ashtanga yoga. However, Ashtanga yoga is more precise, with the same poses being practiced in the same sequence no matter who is leading or taking part in the class.
With power yoga, there is more flexibility, as the sequence is set by whoever is practicing or instructing the class. As a result, there is a lot more variability.
Benefits Of Power Yoga
There are various mental and physical benefits to practicing yoga in general, but there are specific benefits when it comes to power yoga.
The fast-paced nature of this form of yoga means that your heart rate becomes raised as you practice. This means your body can circulate blood and oxygen to your organs more efficiently.
This improves fitness, stamina, and general health, reducing the chances of developing illnesses such as heart disease, diabetes, and strokes.
Although fast-paced, you will still be holding poses in power yoga, which can be done for up to a minute. However, whenever your body has a pose for more than just a few seconds, your muscles must work harder to keep you in that position.
If this is practiced regularly, then the strength in your muscles will improve.
Due to the fast-paced nature of this type of yoga and the fact that it is a cardiovascular exercise, you will burn more calories when practicing this form of yoga than others.
Studies have also found that yoga can improve certain joint pain, which means that people are more likely to practice this style of yoga if they experience this kind of pain.
That same study also found that yoga can make you feel more connected to your body, helping you realize what it needs. This, in turn, can make people more aware of when to stop eating, leading to weight loss.
Reduce Levels Of Stress
Yoga is known for reducing stress levels and encouraging feelings of wellness and calmness.
Although power yoga is fast-paced and less meditative, it has been shown to reduce levels of cortisol, the stress hormone in the body.
Health In General
Power yoga is known to improve overall health in those who practice it. The physical benefits include improved strength, better sleep, improved immune system, and improved posture.
The mental benefits include less stress and an overall feeling of calm.
While there are many benefits to this style of yoga, there are a few drawbacks to consider.
The classes are generally fast-paced, and if you are new to this form of exercise, it may be challenging to keep up at first.
You may also be at risk of injury or overstraining your muscles if you aren’t used to it, so starting with a beginner’s class and working your way up is the best way to avoid this.
If you are after a more restorative and meditative experience, other forms of yoga, such as Hatha yoga, would be more suited.
In summary, power yoga, also known as Vinyasa yoga, is a fast-paced form of exercise that still follows the principles of regular yoga but with more emphasis on the flow from each movement.
It is an excellent option for burning calories, getting a cardio workout in, and learning how to focus your breathing.
Despite its fast-paced nature, therapeutic and meditative principles are still within it. No weights or equipment are needed, but having a good level of fitness and strength is advised before taking part in this form of yoga.