Power Yoga is the Western version of the Indian Ashtanga Yoga.
It was given the term Power Yoga by Beryl Bender Birch, an Ashtanga
Yoga teacher and the author of Power Yoga. Power Yoga has been
brought to the west by followers of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois, a
renowned Sanskrit scholar who inspired Western Yogis with his
Ashtanga Yoga Style and philosophies.
Power Yoga is characterized by the practice of a series of Yoga
Poses without stopping and accompanied by Vinyasa or riding
the breath in order to flow from one pose to another. It is
a vigorous exercise that physically and mentally challenges
you in order to help you connect to your inner power. Poses
are done in a fast pace, some poses are even held longer than
the required five breaths. This practice can increase your physical
endurance and ability to focus on any task for a long time without
breaking your concentration. It is primarily a shortened and
modified version of the primary series of Ashtanga Yoga, but
also adapted certain practices of Bikram and Iyengar Yoga. Like
Bikram Yoga, Power Yoga practice also requires the execution
of basic Yoga Poses which provides vigorous work-out and challenge
which can be done even by Beginners. It also adapts the Iyengar
Yoga practice of putting emphasis on good alignment and form,
and holding the pose longer in order to achieve maximum benefits.
Power Yoga sessions are done in a heated room and composed of
rigorous cardiovascular exercises designed to build strength
and flexibility, improves your ability to focus, release tension,
increase stamina, tone your body and remove toxins from your
body through sweat. The poses involved are linked on the backbone
of Sun Salutation so beginners should be familiar with this
Yoga Exercise. Power Yoga should also be practiced by people
who are physically fit and not suffering from chronic ailments
since Power Yoga Sessions are rigorous and not gentle.
Power Yoga still focus on the general aim of Classical Yoga
- uniting the body, mind and spirit. It uses Yoga practices
in order to help you connect to your inner core of power; it
also recognizes power in several levels. First is the physical
power which is developed through the poses which develop the
body's strength and improve health. Second is the mental power
or the will which is released by drawing your mind from scattered
thoughts and concentrating on your practice. Last is the spiritual
power which is the power behind the physical and mental power.
Through this, Power Yoga connects your body, mind and spirit
in the deepest level.
Power Yoga serves as great training for athletes and also aids
in injury prevention and rehabilitation. The exercises involved
in this kind of Yoga increase stamina, make the body more flexible,
correct structural and muscular imbalance caused by overuse
of a particular part of your body, improve heart efficiency,
and increase lung volume. It can benefit those who want to improve
their performance in particular sports like Cycling, Golf, football
and swimming. Health clubs also use Power Yoga as transition
from Aerobics to Yoga.