“Yoga is the artwork of awareness on the canvas of body, mind and soul.”
Yoga is an ancient Indian spiritual practice which uses both physical and mental exercises for discipline, including breathing techniques, restorative, cardiovascular and meditation. The set of physical yoga practices are referred to as Asanas which include movements, breathing exercises are Pranayama, Pratyahara is controlling the mind and Dharana, the inward gaze.
The practice of yoga over the centuries has proved its success in improving health and quality of life, ‘the cessation of the modification of the mind’.
There are different types of yoga for people who require different need fulfilled.
Vinyasa yoga is for cardio purposes as it has fast movements, translating into the next with each breath, present in the moment. Yin yoga is more restorative, healing whereas Hot yoga is for balance, cholesterol; similarly, Hatha is for alignment of the body and soul.
The different types of yoga are for different types of people who are seeking different benefits from each or even combined, depending on what they personally believe suits them more.
On Anoushey Ashraf’s show Chai Toast aur Host, Yogi Ajlaan spoke about his journey into yoga and how working a corporate job for five years left him feeling a void internally until he started pursuing yoga and went for his teacher training.
‘When you become conscious of your breath you are able to control your mind’, the founder of Karachi Acro Yoga in the city with a group of friends also continued to speak about how yoga worked as a community and trust building exercise, interacting with other people from different backgrounds, during free jam-sessions in the park. ‘Before starting any form of yoga I recommend learning alignment from a certified instructor’ as wrong alignment could cause injuries instead of providing the profuse benefits it does when done correctly. With proper alignment yoga improves your quality of life, from energy and vitality, circulation, a balanced metabolism, immunity, flexibility, core-strength, hormones, mental peace of mind and numerous other ailments. Its benefits are far reaching and from personal experience, completely valid.
Yoga improves your breathing and awareness of your body and its movements, how to go at your own pace and control your mind. Stress causes stiffness and many other illnesses which follow, yoga being able to alleviate or thoroughly reduce it with regular practice of breathing, asanas and a flow including meditation to a certain degree.
Divulging into the practice myself, has created a completely different outlook on it; starting from two years ago, improved flexibility and core strength are surface level as compared to sense of inner peace and wellness as compared to life without it. Yoga is an old but gold practice which, quite literally, attests to the fact that when you feel good inside, you look good outside. The concerns are not necessarily about looking better whatsoever but it becomes relatively more significant to feel better by gaining a greater sense of awareness and establishing a connection with yourself, your mind, body and soul.
In Pakistan, there are ample Yoga Studios, practices and teachers available to share their teachings and help individuals achieve their self-goals.
“The body is your temple. Keep it pure and clean for the soul to reside in.”
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