Our Yoga Mats, a Brief Definition of Yoga, and an Overview on the Eight Limbs of Yoga

The basics of Yoga

Yoga has been around for thousands of years and has now become a global phenomenon that is practiced by millions of people around the world. It is a practice of mind and body with a deep-rooted history in Indian philosophy, different styles of yoga blend physical postures, breathing techniques, and meditation or relaxation.

If you are looking for a more resilient, robust, and competent body and a fresh, positive heart and mind, then yoga may be for you. It's a great form of exercise that will improve your health, as well as aiding your psychic wellbeing.

What does Yoga mean

The term yoga comes from the Sanskrit word Yuj, meaninig to yoke or bind, and is often interpreted as "union" or a method of discipline. A male who trains yoga is called a yogi, a female practitioner, a yogini.

The Indian sage Patanjali is thought to have assembled the practice of yoga into the Yoga Sutra an estimated 5,000 years ago. The Sutra is a collection of 195 accounts that serves as a philosophical guidebook for most of the yoga that is practiced globally today.

The Eight Limbs of Yoga (Ashtanga)

The Eight Limbs of Yoga are core beliefs that serve as guidance for living a meaningful and purposeful life.

Yamas - Yamas are moral ideas to help guide interactions with others. These are five yamas:

  • Nonviolence
  • Truthfulness
  • Non-stealing
  • Chastity and fidelity
  • Non-coveting

 

These considerations reflect the fundamental morals instilled in school but have depth in their continued practice. It is essential to keep in mind that there are many versions of the Yamas and Niyamas, this is important to think about when finding the best way for you to practice.  

Niyamas - The Niyamas are practices that inform self-discipline and wisdom. The proverbs below generally reflect the essence of each Niyama:

  • Saucha: is all about purification and aiming towards cleaning both your mind and body.
  • Samtosha: is about not being too greedy and aiming to not want what you do not need.
  • Tapas: is all about discipline and effectively ensuring you can do what you do not want to do.
  • Svadhyaya: discusses examining who we are within our true selves.
  • Ishvara Pranidhana: is about being able to surrender and have faith within a higher power.

Asana - Asana refers to the physical positions trained in yoga. Obtained from the source word as in Sanskrit, which suggests seat, asana is designed to develop the body and mind for seated

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