Charaka Samhita, an ancient Ayurvedic compendium, mentions Yoga, which is a physical discipline evolved through centuries-old practices and tests of 'rishis' or sages of old. Yoga aims at dissolving physical stress and re-claiming peace and quiet of the mind, which prepares one for meditation and devolves on him/her the ayurvedic routine for reinforced validation and effectiveness of the elemental-centric balance of the three governing principles of the human organism, viz., ‘vata’, ‘pitta’, and ‘kapha’. Yoga is recognized as the ideal ayurvedic exercise that rejuvenates the body, improves digestion, and performs the act of stress-relieving. If Ayurveda is a science, Yoga is the artistic rendition of it in practice. For example, the basic yoga practice of ‘Pranayama’ brings the vital energy of the cosmos directly to impact the body in various ways to put right the biological humours of any person as envisaged in Ayurveda. Yoga caters to physical, emotional, mental and social welfare through the regular practice of a range of multi-faceted techniques, which include postures and movements, breath awareness and breathing modulations, relaxation and concentration as well as self –inquiry and meditation.

Purposes of Yoga

  • Cultivation of discernment, awareness, self-regulation and higher consciousness in the individual.
  • Increased physical flexibility.
  • Increased muscle strength and tone.
  • Improved respiration, energy and vitality.
  • Balanced metabolism.
  • Cardio and blood-circulatory health.
  • Improved athletic performance.

Types of Yoga

  • Anusara
  • Ashtanga
  • Bikram
  • Hatha
  • Iyengar
  • Jivamukti
  • Kripulu
  • Kundalini

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