Yoga is a Sanskrit word meaning, “union”. It is a philosophical system that originated in India more than 5,000 years ago with the goal of self-awareness or enlightenment—Samadhi. Yoga is not a religion, and can be practiced by anyone of any faith. Says Phil Catalfo, an editor at Yoga Journal, “While many Westerners come to yoga primarily for its health benefits, it seems safe to say that most people who open to yoga will, in time, find its meditative qualities and more subtle effects on the mind and emotions equally (if not more) beneficial. They will, in other words, come to see yoga as a spiritual practice. But, without credos or congregations, it can’t properly be regarded as a religion—unless we say that each yogi and yogini comprises a religion of one.”
There are a variety of styles of yoga, and at Yoga Junction we offer several styles, however the majority of our classes are based on Hatha yoga. The practice of Hatha yoga encompasses physical postures (asana), breathwork (pranayama), and meditation. Although ancient in practice, yoga has numerous modern day benefits. It helps bring balance to the body and mind. It helps increase strength and flexibility, and also builds confidence. The most significant change people tend to note with a regular practice is a reduction in stress and anxiety. In addition, yoga can help lower blood pressure, detoxify the organs, increase metabolism, and help reduce depression and insomnia. Since yoga encompasses so many aspects, we strongly suggest checking out a variety of classes to find teachers and styles that resonate with you. We also have a reading list at the studio for those that want to take their practice to another level. Namaste!
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Discover what the Sanskrit words mean that you hear in class.