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Satyananda Yoga: Integrating Head, Heart and Hands Satyananda yoga is a practice developed by Sri Swami Satyandana Saraswati. This form of yoga is grounded on ancient and traditional sources. Sri Swami Satyandana was a yoga teacher, guru and sannyasin in India and in many countries in the world. In 1956, he founded the International Yoga Fellowship, and in 1963 he founded the Bihar School of Yoga. Over the years, he has taught yoga through tours in North America, Europe, Australia, Singapore and Japan and has authored more than 80 books on yoga and spiritual sciences. Satyananda yoga is a holistic system that involves the body and the mind. In fact, it is also called Yoga of the Head, Heart and Hands. It uses the traditional method which involves asanas (postures) and pranayama (postures and meditation). Its goal is to balance the mind and body, improve the flow of energy and keep the mind focused. Satyananda Yoga Classes The yoga classes are practiced systematically and traditionally, progressing through the different stages or levels of our existence. The class begins by focusing on the physical body. Over time though, it will move progressively into more subtle realms of experience. Yoga classes are usually 1 to 1.5 hours in duration. •Asanas – Asanas or postures improve flexibility and overall health. They also remove stress, tension and blockages of energy in the body. Classical postures are practiced in the class, and will progress as the students experience deepens. Asanas are explored in a manner that focuses on awareness instead of competition. •Pranayama – Pranayama or breathing is also a very important component of the class. Its aim is to balance and expand the vital energies of the body. Breathing exercises relax the mind and is practiced along with the asanas. •Meditation – Satyananda yoga also incorporates meditation in its practice as it helps improve awareness and access deeper realms of the students mind. Meditation is taught over series of sessions and will cover inner observation, breath awareness, body stillness and sound vibration (mantra). Meditation is usually taught to advanced or experienced students because it requires mastery of asana and pranayama. •Advanced Practice – Aside from asanas and pranayama, advanced courses of Satyananda Yoga may include bandhas and mudras. Bandhas or energy locks. These are “locks” inside the body that are done to control pranic energy within the body. Mudras, on the other hand, are yogic gestures. These are done in conjunction with pranayama in order to stimulate blood flow and prana flow to specific parts of the body. •Satyananda Yoga Nidra – This is a technique developed by Sri Swami Satyananda Saraswati, which allows people to contain things that distract their mind, allowing them to relax. It follows a system that includes the relaxation of the physical, mental and emotional aspects. Is Satyananda Yoga For Me? The practice is based on sacred scriptures, traditional practices and ancient knowledge in order to achieve holistic balance. Indeed, it is yoga that integrates the head, heart and hands. If you want something that focuses not just on your body but also on your mind, then Satyananda Yoga may be a good choice for you.
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