THE DEVELOPMENT OF DYNAMIC YOGA
Dynamic yoga is a creative style of Hatha yoga, blending the principles of Ashtanga and Iyengar.Dynamic yoga is not only meditative but also physically challenging. Central to the technique of dynamic yoga is the sequencing of postures with interlinking transitional movements and a synchronized breathing pattern. These create a flowing connection of yoga postures that gives you a balanced workout and mental clarity.
Yoga is a Sanskrit word that means the union of body, mind, and spirit. Yoga is an exploration of the potential of the body, working in harmony with the mind in order to recognize the higher self. It can be translated as a spiritual union of your soul with God or the eternal truth. This truth is experiential, and the practice of yoga becomes a process of self-discovery that is available to everyone. Traditionally there are five branches of yoga. They are: Karma yoga – the path of action; Gyana yoga – the path of wisdom; Bhakti yoga – the path of devotion; Hatha yoga – the physical path; and Raja yoga – the path of meditation. The dynamic yoga program in this book is a form of Hatha yoga, which focuses on the physical postures, or asanas.
THE BENEFITS OF HATHA YOGA
The practice of yoga involves patience, perseverance, and a keen observation of the self. The consistent practice of yoga postures cultivates the ability to observe what is in the present moment. By focusing your attention on the subtle and broad movements of both mind and body, you are able to gain pure insight into the nature of things as they truly are. This is known as mindfulness, from which follows happiness, freedom, and peace. The yoga postures demonstrated in this book have been developed from an understanding of the connections between patterns of thought, body posture, and the breath. These connections are evident when you consider the body's habitual response to certain external stimuli. For example, when you are afraid, your heartbeat increases, your breath stops momentarily, and certain muscles tense; when you are nervous, your stomach turns, your breath shortens, and your palms sweat.
Yoga sages have observed these and some more subtle connections between mind and body for thousands of years. Their knowledge is embedded in the dynamic yoga postures. By practicing them, you, too, will reach a deeper understanding of the connections. In time, you will find that you are practicing yoga not only during the movement of postures, but also through the entire day as you go about your regular activities. By bringing the body and mind more in harmony through yoga postures, you will find that your whole approach to life changes. Then, instead of simply reacting to everyday events and situations, you will respond to them mindfully.
This pose is taken from the Sun Salutation a sequence; The Sun Salutations create the flowing rhythm of the practice.