Kundalini Yoga: A Different Type of Yoga

Kundalini Yoga is a more esoteric form of yoga and yet it is still not so extreme that it isn’t commonly available at various fitness clubs and yoga centers today. The practices are geared toward a more martial approach to intensive health and well being, with a more meditative focus on the mind than many of the fitness club yoga classes may generally tend to provide. While it may seem to be an intense first yoga to venture into initially, it is actually not so extreme but just may not fit the general concept of what people sometimes think of yoga to look like.

The poses are often held for longer periods of time than other forms of popular yoga and this may be challenging at first. You may be surprised to see muscular men struggling to hold their arms aloft in some postures while an elderly woman next to them may have no such issues. The theory is that the feeling of resistance resulting in the difficulty for a person to, for instance, hold their arms straight out in front of them continually for 4 minutes or more is actually caused by a weak flow of energy through the circuitry located within the human body. This is believed to be caused by various factors such as repetitive stress or inadequate dietary habits or something similar along those lines.

The breathing exercises employed in the Kundalini style of yoga are intended to work in concert with the postures so that as intensity is felt then focus moves to that part of the body and the breathing exercises are moving energy through the circuits in that portion of the body. The result is essentially that the energetic flow in that part of the body is restored and the person is then able to maintain the posture much easier. This is the general yogic theory behind the practice and it appears to work relatively well to do so.

The primary kind of breathing exercise which is somewhat unique to Kundalini Yoga in comparison with other common fitness club yoga styles is something called “Breath of Fire”. This is a type of high speed in and out breath in conjunction with the compression of the stomach toward the spine which may seem similar to hyper-ventilating. In fact, it almost seems like intentional hyper-ventilation and that may be its secret effectiveness. Basically the breathing exercise is commonly an enabling factor in holding a certain postures for beginning Kundalini Yoga practitioners.

The postures and breathing techniques of Kundalini Yoga may seem simple in a way, but beginners are highly cautioned to not start practicing it on their own prior to at least trying one class with a well trained and insightful instructor. If you feel absolutely compelled to try it on your own, then please find a DVD or video series with only the most wonderful of reviews from trained instructors.