Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga is a form of yoga popularized by K. Pattabhi Jois during the 20th century, promoted as a modern-day form of classical Indian yoga. He claimed to have learnt the system from his teacher, Tirumalai Krishnamacharya. The style is energetic, synchronizing breath with movements. The individual poses (asanas) are linked by flowing movements (vinyasas).
Jois established his Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute in 1948. The current style of teaching is called the Mysore style after the city, India where the practice was originally taught. Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga has given rise to various spinoff styles of Power Yoga.
Ashtanga Yoga comprises the following. Ashtanga means ashta (eight) and anga(limbs). That means eight limbs yoga. Here ‘limb’ means part. The eight limbs are as follows:-
- Yamas (Behavioural must-practice observances – things you should do/to be done
- Niyamas (Behavioural restraints obligations, rules and regulations– things you should not do
- Asana (Yoga poses / postures)
- Pranayama (Breathing exercise techniques to control life force energy)
- Pratyahara (Withdrawal of the senses, i.e., self-control)
- Dharana (Concentration)
- Dhyana (Meditation)
- Samadhi (Transendance)
Ashtanga yoga can be practiced by the ones who are ashram-dwellers(monastery dwellers) following total spiritual life renouncing the world! That does not mean that no family man or anyone living in a family can not practice it. You are free to follow if you are capable of doing so.