What is Yoga? 

I feel blessed to be a guardian of the practice of yoga and to share "real yoga" with everyone who attends my yoga sessions. I deliver a yoga practice that honours not just the physical practice of asana but also breathwork, meditation and yogic philosophy too.

 

The word yoga is derived from the Sanskrit word yui to yoke or bind and is often interpreted as "union" or a method of discipline. A female who practises Yoga is called a yogini and a male practitioner a yogi.

 

An Indian Sage by the name of Patanjali is believed to be the one who drew the practice of Yoga into the "Yoga Sutra" approximately 2000 years ago. The Yoga Sutra is a collection of 195 statements serving as a philosophical handbook for the Yoga that is practised all over the world today.

 

The Yoga sutras outlines the eight limbs of Yoga:

the yamas (restraints),

niyamas (observances),

asana (postures),

pranayama (breathing),

pratyahara (withdrawal of the senses),

dharana (concentration),

dhyani (meditation) and

samadhi (absorption).

 

As the yogini/yogi begins their journey into their practice refining behaviour in the outer world starts and then focus begins inwardly until we reach the final stage of samadhi meaning liberation and enlightenment.

 

Most people who practice Yoga undertake the third limb, asana which is a program of physical postures which are designed to purify the body and prepare the body with physical strength and stamina that is needed to undertake long periods of meditation.