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Meet Hatha Yoga and its Excellent Benefits

Ashtanga Yoga is a variation of Hatha Yoga, which is based on aerobic exercise, which means that when practising Ashtanga Yoga you sweat a lot which is excellent for weight loss and toning the body.

Ashtanga Yoga is a very active and dynamic way of doing Yoga.

The difference between Ashtanga Yoga and Hatha Yoga is centred on the practice of vinyasa, which refers to the group of movements and breathing techniques, taking into account the synchronisation between the two and that the movements are usually chained one posture to another.

It should be noted that each asana has been designed in a meticulous way and is made up of a certain amount of movements and ways of breathing so that the postures are synchronised based on a syntony between breathing and movement.

In the different Ashtanga Yoga sessions the same asanas will be performed, the only thing that changes is the number of postures that are performed, as the number of postures will increase as the student progresses in their Ashtanga Yoga experience.

What is Hatha Yoga?

Hatha Yoga is a very ancient form of Yoga, the basis of which can be found in a book called ‘Yoga Korunta’ by Vamana Rishi whose teachings were later passed on to Sri Krishmacharya, and thus to various well-known figures in the yogi world.

 Hatha Yoga poses

Ashtanga Yoga does not focus much on the subject of meditation, but places more emphasis on the performance of movements that have a considerable speed and high intensity, and this makes this discipline one of the most physically demanding to be practiced. Each position that is performed is synchronised with each other and also with the breath.

Who can practice Hatha Yoga?

This style of Yoga is especially recommended for people who have a preference for disciplines where speed and rigorousness are involved. Although it is not just that you have to perform one asana after the other very quickly, it really means that the performance of the postures should have a certain fluidity which makes it a little more physically demanding than other types of Yoga.

The first sequence of asanas is made up of positions where there is a bit of tension in the spine, and also a considerable amount of the asanas to be performed require strength in the arms.

This means that if you are new to yoga, or if you are looking to relax through meditation, then Ashtanga Yoga is probably not the right discipline for you.

However, anyone who is willing to take on the challenges of Ashtanga Yoga is welcome to do it.

The Foci of Ashtanga Yoga

– Vinyasa: This is the fluidity of breath and movement. Each asana should be made up of one breath. For example, when standing you should inhale, leaning forward you should exhale, and in this way you breathe as you move.

– The advantages of Vinyasa is that it is a way to cleanse internally, and it also generates an increase in body temperature so that toxins begin to move and the blood becomes lighter and this leads to a freer circulation throughout the body.

– Tristhana: This is based on three distinct points of focus: Breathing patterns, dhristi and postures.

– Breathing patterns: The manner in which one inhales and exhales should be of equal duration. Breathing in this case is considered as a way of purifying the nervous system.

Hatha Yoga definition

– Dhristi: There are a total of 9 Dhristis, bearing in mind that this word refers to the places where you should focus your attention. These places are the nose, the navel, the thumb, the third eye, the hands, the feet, the upper body, the left side of the body and the right side of the body.

– The postures: In this part it is considered that the different asanas that are performed are able to strengthen and purify the body.

– The 6 poisons: It is said that God is in the hearts of people in the form of light, but it is usually camouflaged by a total of 6 poisons, but with constancy and discipline in the practice of yoga it is possible to get rid of these poisons due to the heat that is generated with Ashtanga Yoga. These poisons are:

  • Karma (desire)


  • Krodha (anger)


  • Moha (delusion)


  • Lobha (greed)


  • Matsarya (envy)


  • Mada (laziness)

Benefits of Ashtanga Yoga

– Optimise your balance and control: In this type of yoga, great concentration is required for the precise performance of the asanas and good balancing skills are also necessary.

Hatha Yoga pradipika pdf

– Increases muscle strength and power: Practising Ashtanga Yoga requires you to go deep into your body to maintain a fluidity in the asana sequence. As a result, your muscles will become stronger and more toned without even resorting to lifting weights.

– Improve your breathing: With this form of Yoga you will learn to breathe effectively and consciously. In fact, over time you will be able to modify your breathing to improve it and use different techniques to relax, activate, cool down and meditate through it.

– It brings health to the internal organs: Ashtanga Yoga has a considerable number of postures with which it is possible to optimise the state of health of the internal organs. Among these positions is Passchimottanasana, which is excellent for combating constipation as it increases blood circulation in the abdominal area.


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