Sivananda yoga – Yoga of happiness and peace

Sivananda yoga is one of the most gentle yoga styles with a slow tempo that focuses heavily on breathing, spirituality, and meditation.

For many yogis, Sivananda yoga is still something quite foreign. Although it is one of the largest yoga schools, but Sivananda yoga is not popular in Vietnam. What is Sivananda yoga? Is Sivananda yoga the type of yoga you’re looking for? See the sharing below of to understand more about this type of yoga.

What is Sivananda yoga?

Sivananda yoga is the largest yoga school in the West inherited from the traditional Hatha yoga. This is a gentle, slow-paced form of yoga, each movement is spiritual, focusing mainly on meditation and breathing.

Sivananda yoga is a unique type of yoga, the ultimate goal that sivananda yoga is towards is peace of mind. To achieve this, the movements of sivananda yoga will revolve around 6 main points

  • Posture (Asana)
  • Breath (Pranayama)
  • Relaxation (Savasana)
  • Eating right (vegetarianism)
  • Positive Thinking (Vedanta)
  • Meditation (Dhyana)

Specifically, the postures will always be in balance with breathing and relaxation to indirectly control the mind. Along with that is a healthy vegetarian diet that supports training. And finally, meditation with positive thinking will have a direct effect on the mind.

Sivananda yoga was first introduced to the community in 1957 by Swami Vishnudevananda. Today, this type of yoga is becoming more and more popular in western countries such as the UK, the US, and West Africa because of its simple but effective practice.

How is Sivananda yoga practiced?

Practicing sivananda yoga will be a combination of slow movements with breathing exercises, relaxation. An average sivananda yoga session lasts about 90 minutes with a few minutes of rest between poses.

The practice usually begins with relaxation, rest, followed by Prayanama breathing exercises. Specifically, after relaxing, you will perform Kapalbharti breathing exercises and alternate Anulom Violom breathing exercises. Next, you will do poses like:

  • Headstand (Sirshasana)
  • Candle pose (Sarvangasana)
  • Plow Pose (Halasana)
  • Fish Pose (Matsyasana)
  • Sitting Forward Bend Pose (Paschimothanasana)
  • Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana)
  • Grasshopper Pose (Shalabhasana)
  • Bow Pose (Dhanurasana)
  • Ardha Matsyendrasana (Spine Twisting Pose)
  • Crow Pose (Kakasana) or Peacock Pose (Mayurasana)
  • Standing Forward Bend Pose (Pada Hasthasana)
  • Trikonasana (Trikonasana)
  • Savasana (corpse pose)
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Five “golden” principles of sivananda yoga

sivananda yogaSivananda yoga is a gentle, slow-paced type of yoga

Asana – Correct posture

Asana is one of the eight limbs of yoga. This is a physical element and acts as a link between the mind and the breath. Performing the correct postures will help you have a solid, healthy body, the joints of arms and legs are also more flexible.

Pranayama – Proper Breathing

Although breathing is an involuntary action, you can completely control your breathing through Pranayama exercises. Proper breathing control will work to increase the amount of oxygen circulating to the brain, while promoting relaxation of the mind and body.

Savasana – Relaxation

Savasana is a relaxation technique performed at the end of the session. This technique will help you recharge and restore your body.

Bhojan – Proper nutrition and eating

The Bhojan diet is an important part. During the practice, you will maintain a vegetarian diet with natural foods (Upeksa), avoiding processed foods to promote the healing process of the body from the inside out.

Vedanta and Dhyana – Positive thinking and meditation

Positive thinking is the foundation for the good things you will do in your daily activities. Meditation will help you become more aware of yourself.

Benefits of sivananda yoga

Sivananda yogaSivananda yoga emphasizes spirituality and positive thinking, which is why this type of yoga is effective in reducing stress.

The goal of Sivananda Yoga is to strengthen and tone the body’s muscle groups. Regular practice will help the body to be full of vitality, reducing the possibility of disease by “nourishing” the body naturally. If you are someone who is very interested in Indian philosophy then you will definitely enjoy this type of yoga:

  • Strengthens the flexibility of muscles, joints, ligaments and tendons
  • Circulatory stimulation
  • Increases spine strength and flexibility
  • Strengthens muscles and makes them more flexible
  • Improves digestive and nervous system health
  • Reduce belly fat, support weight loss
  • Stimulates the thyroid gland, which plays an important role in the body’s metabolism, nutrition and growth.

Practicing this type of yoga is especially beneficial in the treatment of respiratory disorders. Controlled breathing and relaxation exercises will help improve muscle nourishment and increase oxygen uptake.

Notes to remember when practicing Sivananda Yoga

While this is a safe and effective form of yoga, it is not recommended for:

  • Women in the last 3 months of pregnancy because positions can affect the development of the fetus
  • People with cardiovascular diseases
  • Elderly
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With its relaxing effects on the body and self-awareness, sivananda yoga can positively impact your life and improve your health. Once you master the five principles of this type of yoga, you will become more aware of how you exercise, eat, and see life.

Are you curious about sivananda yoga? Don’t hesitate to download, connect with a professional yoga teacher and try this type of yoga today.

Reference source

Sivananda Yoga to Empower the Mind and Body Access date: 19/3/2021

Sivananda Yoga – How Can Help You Improve Your Health Access date: 19/3/2021

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