Most forms of yoga in the West can be defined as Hatha Yoga. Hatha simply refers to the practice of physical yoga postures, meaning your Ashtanga, vinyasa, Iyengar and Power Yoga classes are all Hatha Yoga. The word “hatha” can be translated two ways: as “willful” or “forceful,” or the yoga of activity, and as “sun” (ha) and “moon” (tha), the yoga of balance. Hatha practices are designed to align and calm your body, mind, and spirit in preparation for meditation.
A yoga class described as ‘Hatha‘ will typically involve a set of physical postures and breathing techniques, practised more slowly and with more static posture holds than perhaps a Vinyasa flow or Ashtanga class.
Actually, I have often observed that Hatha has claimed an Image of gentle, slow or sometimes even boring. True, focusing on alignment and moving consciously from pose to pose is, in fact, a lot quieter than the dynamic and challenging Ashtanga or creative Vinyasa Flows. But even though the movements are slower, it is not limited to a gentle practice. The two possible translations implify the strength or force behind the practice, while balancing sun (our strong, masculine energy) with the moon (our calm, feminine energy) within our selves. And while poses are held longer, we will as well move through dynamic flows inbetween to balance both parts accordingly. Yogis claim that although hatha yoga can make the body as strong and fit as any exercise program, its real benefits come about because it is a system of maintenance and balance for the whole body and mind.
Hatha is a powerful tool for self transformation. While focusing the attention inwards, it can assist in a mindful lifestyle to the outside.
It can sometimes be challenging to hold a pose for a longer time than usual, but it is also that from true challenge, we develop true strength.
See you on the mat!