News Yoga in San Diego
Yoga in San Diego
Open up any Us Weekly magazine and you can get the scoop on the latest celebrity-fueled fitness craze. In the '80s it was aerobics and Jazzercise. The '90s had cardio kickboxing, then spinning, then yoga, then pilates, then yogalates, krav maga, cardio striptease ... and the list goes on. Fitness fads come and go, but occasionally you'll find an exercise that stands the test of time, like yoga. Practiced for nearly 5,000 years, yoga is a form of body conditioning that places emphasis on strengthening the body and the mind while stimulating the soul. Who practices it? Everyone from Hindu masters to Gwyneth Paltrow.
Developed and still taught by the now 80-year-old B.K.S. Iyengar, this form of yoga focuses on proper alignment of the body. Generally Iyengar classes include fewer poses than other forms of yoga, but poses are held much longer, allowing the body to settle into the posture and find increased alignment. Many find Iyengar yoga to be challenging because of its strict, detail-oriented nature, while others who prefer a more vigorous, sweaty workout claim Iyengar is too slow-paced. The use of props such as belts, blocks, bolsters, blankets and chairs is integral to Iyengar practice.
Bikram yoga, also called "hot yoga," was brought to America by Bikram Choudhury in 1971 and consists of 26 postures repeated in the same order in a studio heated to nearly 105 degrees Fahrenheit. This controversial form of yoga is not right for everyone. Bikram devotees claim the extreme heat does wonders for their flexibility and complexion, while other yoga practitioners frown on this style, arguing that heat should be created from within the body rather than externally.
Vinyasa, or "flow" yoga, is a vigorous form of yoga that places emphasis on a series of postures that flow into one another. There are many names for this type of yoga, each with its own nuances, including Ashtanga, power yoga and "flow series." All forms of Vinyasa are derived from Ashtanga, which was founded by K. Pattabhi Jois and uses six series of movements to stretch, strengthen and tone the entire body.
Kundalini was brought to the West in 1969 by Yogi Bhajan. This form of yoga incorporates postures, breathing, chanting and meditation into each practice. The goal of Kundalini yoga is to activate the life energy within the body and channel it through each of the seven chakras.
Svaroopa Yoga was developed by Rama Berch, founder and director of La Jolla's Master Yoga Academy. A gentler form of yoga, Svaroopa focuses on healing the body and encouraging a transcendental experience through familiar yoga postures.
By Maya Kroth,SignOnSanDiego