The Sanskrit word “vinyasa” includes a prefix VI and a suffix nyasa. The prefix VI means “to place” and the suffix nyasa means “in a special way”. Vinyasa is also called flow because of the way different movements run together. Vinyasa is a broader term, which encompasses different forms of yoga, including ashtanga and power yoga.
Let’s take a look at some of the characteristics of vinyasa.
Characteristics of Vinyasa Yoga
Connection of Postures
Vinyasa yoga is the connection of one or more postures with one another using breaths. It is almost like linking or flowing into postures, which is why it is referred to as flow yoga. It is different from an alignment-based exercise in which the participants observe a certain posture for some time before it changes.
It is Transitional
In vinyasa yoga, all the postures are connected to one another through a set of transitions. These transitions are the joints holding the postures together. Not much attention is paid to these transitions as they are considered as postures. In order to do it in a more graceful way, some time must be allotted to perfecting the transitions.
It is Synonymous
Vinyasa is a combination of postures and movements connected through transitions. Moving in and out of a posture is a form of movement but your breath and heartbeat can be considered a form of movement when it comes to vinyasa yoga.
It is Comprehensive
Vinyasa is a comprehensive form of yoga that covers all the categories of asana yoga in a single session. It is different from alignment-based classes that stretch over a period of days or weeks.
It is an Effortless Effort
Vinyasa can induce a flow state and drift a person into a different kind of consciousness. It helps increase a person’s focus. During the flow that this yoga generates, everything feels easy and connected.
Health Benefits of Vinyasa Yoga
Improved Cardiovascular Health
Not every form of yoga qualifies to be referred to as a cardio exercise but vinyasa does. In 2014, a review of studies showed that asana can improve the resting heart rate along with some other cardiovascular points.
Exercise can lead to muscle development. When it comes to vinyasa yoga, the practitioners indulge in a series of intense body movements. This helps them reduce weight, gain muscle and increase resistance through their own body weight.
Increased Body Strength
Because it uses body weight resistance, vinyasa provides the perfect functional strength training. The arm balances and inversions help develop relative strength, which enhances the overall fitness and performance of the human body.
Vinyasa yoga provides a good combination of flexibility and movement, which increases one’s range of motion. Through yoga, a person can achieve complete awareness of their mental and physical state.
Vinyasa yoga involves a series of complex movements and postures. Those movements and postures can provide for better flexibility. Enhanced flexibility keeps the body stay in shape, improves mobility and proves to be beneficial in performing physical tasks.
Vinyasa is the most comprehensive form of yoga. If practiced regularly, it can help to maintain a healthy balance between the mind, body and soul.
Try one of our Vinyasa Yoga classes at The Yoga Studio Downtown in Utica, MI. Please feel free to give us a call today at 586-991-0760.