Namaste: A Beginner’s Guide to the Most Common Yoga Phrases
Have you decided that you want to make yoga a part of your life? There’s good reason to.
Yoga is responsible for health benefits like improved bone health, blood flow, and even better sex lives.
If you’re looking to deepen your understanding of yoga, but don’t understand half of what the yoga phrases used in your class, read on.
The Origin of Yoga Phrases
Many of the phrases you’ll hear at a yoga class are in Sanskrit. Sanskrit is the traditional language of yoga. Sanskrit is an ancient language containing 49 letters. It also uses a lot of traditional vibrational tones in its application.
As you may have guessed, “Down Dog” isn’t a real yoga term. It is, however, an American colloquialism for a popular yoga pose. This may not be a traditional term, but it is helpful for depicting the pose to English speakers.
Ultimately, understanding the words you hear in class can help you deepen your understanding of yoga. This can also lead to a stronger practice.
A Few Common Phrases
“Asana” is a likely word you’ll hear often. Asana means posture or pose. This term indicates the poses you’ll assume while in class.
“Namaste” is possibly the most famous of the yoga terms. Namaste has received such common use, that even non-practitioners know it’s meaning!
“Om” is another common and important yoga term. No, it’s not just a noise. Om is a word that is meant to unify you with creation and the divine. Om is also a symbol.
Ultimately, there are no wrong ways to meditate, but adding it to your daily practice can help further connect you to your understanding
Namaste means “the divine within me honors the divine within you”. It’s a beautiful intention and is often used to close a practice.
Yoga Terms on Your Class Schedule
If you’re picking a class, you may not know exactly what you’re going to get. This is because yoga classes are often described with a Sanskrit name.
A “Vinyasa” class, for example, is a class of flowing movement. The word vinyasa itself means flow in Sanskrit. You can expect flowing asanas such as sun salutations in this class.
“Kundalini” is another style of yoga. This style focuses much on breathwork, asanas, meditation, and spiritual connection. In short, you’ll be getting more than just poses.
“Bikram” yoga is something else entirely. Beware of Bikram if you aren’t ready to sweat. This isn’t actually a yoga term at all. Instead, this refers to the founder of the practice. He innovated the traditional yoga practice by turning up the heat… literally.
The most important element practice is your desire to learn more. Keeping an open heart and mind can lead you to find a deeper connection to all the things you care about.
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