Hatha Yoga is a very gentle method of yoga practice. Itâ€™s name is derived from a combination of two words in Sanskrit: Ha – the Sun, and Tha – the Moon. These can also be thought of as masculine energy and feminine energy. The goal of Hatha Yoga is to balance these energies. In addition to gaining mental, emotional and spiritual balance, people who practice Hatha Yoga also gain a strong, healthy body. As a primarily physical form of yoga, the main components ofHatha Yoga are the poses and the breathing exercises; however, there are also components of meditation and purification practices. The poses used for Hatha Yoga are slow, smooth and simple. They can be performed very gently and are suitable for all people at all stages of life or levels of fitness. With regular practice, anyone will see improvement in mind, body and spirit. Thatâ€™s probably why Hatha Yoga has remained a popular yoga choice for over 5000 years!
In todayâ€™s fast paced world, people often struggle just to keep up with day to day life. The feeling of being on a treadmill that never stops can cause a lot of problems physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Regular practice of Hatha Yoga acts as a welcome, nourishing break in hectic routine. By practicing Hatha Yoga daily for half an hour or so, you will see physical improvement throughout your body. If you have had aches and pains, Hatha Yoga will help relieve it. Additionally, it will help build flexibility in the joints and tendons and strength in the muscles. It is particularly helpful for people who work at a desk all day.
Practicing Hatha Yoga morning and evening is advised. Fifteen minutes to half an hour upon arising and before going to sleep will make all the difference in the world to the quality of your day and the quality of your sleep. Be sure to wear comfortable clothes of a natural fabric – or no clothes at all if you are more comfortable that way! Use a soft cotton mat to protect your joints from the hard floor. Be sure to choose something that wonâ€™t slip out from under you. As you do your practice, you may want to listen to some quieting music or follow a Hatha Yoga video. Remember to breathe deeply, in through the nose and out through the mouth. Inhale deeply and exhale completely. Think â€œSaaaahâ€ for a slow count of 4 when you inhale and â€œHaaaahâ€ for a slow count of 4 when you exhale. Stretch gently.
Relax into the poses. Donâ€™t force or push yourself. That is counter to the philosophy of Hatha Yoga. Breathe into the poses. A minimum of 5 cycles of breath per pose is a good goal, but you can hold a pose longer if you want to. Move gracefully from pose to pose. If you are creating your own series of poses, be careful not to try to go directly from a floor pose to a standing pose. Instead, work through a series of poses that will take you gracefully and naturally from standing, to the floor, and back again.
You will feel refreshed, calm, and ready to face the day or enjoy much-needed rest when you have finished your Hatha Yoga practice.