A Beginner’s Guide to Major Styles of Yoga (Part 1)

Seeking the class at your gym club for a good yoga class can be a real tough as you might loss in confusion. How can you know the difference between Anusara and Ashtanga? In this post, we explain many different styles of yoga being taught today which will help you find your way to a class you love.

1. Anusara
Created by American yogis John Friend in 1997, Anusara yoga is a newest style to the yoga world. Depends on the belief that we’re all following with an intrinsic goodness, Anusara uses the physical practice of yoga to help students open their minds and hearts to experience kindness, and let their inner goodness take over. Classes, which are specifically taught by the teacher to discover one of Friend’s Universal Principles of Alignment, are critical for the body and the mind.

2. Ashtanga
Ashtanga is developed based on ancient yoga teachings, but it was renewed and spread to the West by K. Pattabhi Jois in the 1970s. It’s a rigorous style of yoga that consists of a specific sequence of postures and is the same as vinyasa yoga, in which each posture and movement link to a breath. The only difference is that yogis must practice Ashtanga the exact same poses in the exact same order. This is a rough, physically demanding exercise, so make sure to bring your favorite yoga mat towel.

3. Bikram
About 30 years ago, Bikram Choudhury establish a school of yoga with classes are organized in artificially heated rooms. In a Bikram class, yogis will sweat like hell as yogis practice a series of 26 poses in the same sequence as ashtanga. Bikram is rather controversial as Choudhury trademarked his sequence and has sued studios who named themselves Bikram, but don’t follow the exactly sequences they should. It has become wildly popular recently making it one of the easiest classes to find and practice although due to the heated conditions of the studio, yogis must bring a water bottle!