Yoga for Men: Which of Them Are Ideal?

Although originally a religious exercise by root, yoga has found popularity in the Western World as a very effective alternative health practice. The stretches that are part of it, although strenuous for the beginner, are good for keeping muscles strong and flexible. Yoga has cardiovascular exercises as well since being meditative enables the practitioner to calm down and lower blood pressure to provide relaxation.

Yoga is for everyone, particularly men. Depending on what their aims are, there is a type of yoga for every man. Here are some of them:

Iyengar Yoga

Iyengar Yoga takes its name from its founder B.K.S. Iyengar. The stark difference between this Yoga style from all other styles is its use of props. These props are used to assist the practitioner in achieving a certain posture thus making it possible for him to reach higher levels of asanas or postures quickly as compared to the other styles of Yoga. The props also allow for less muscular exertion from the practitioner’s side, allowing them to practice yoga even when sick or tired.

Upon creating his style, B.K.S. Iyengar gave particular emphasis to body alignment and correct posture. In a typical Iyengar Yoga class, instructors watch students carefully and actively correct them if they make wrong postures or alignments. Because of the emphasis on correct body alignment and posture, Iyengar Yoga is ideal for athletes and people who require good flexibility in their daily lives and work.

Asthanga Yoga

A style of yoga introduced by Pattabhi Jois, Asthanga Yoga refers to the 8 limbs or spiritual practices of yoga. Asthanga Yoga is essentially a cleansing practice. Its exercises are all introduced to produce heat and make the body sweat so that the toxins in the blood are expelled through sweat. These toxins are usually taken from the defects in the body’s internal organs. Unlike Iyengar yoga, props are not used in Asthanga Yoga.

Due to its cleansing properties—both internal and external—the Asthanga Yoga is ideal for those with internal defects and problems. People with asthma, liver problems, ulcers, and high blood pressure can surely benefit from Asthana yoga.

Although it uses the Vinyasa yoga concept, Ashtanga yoga is usually listed in schedules as a different name.

Vinyasa Yoga

Vinyasa yoga is a breath-driven form of yoga. When performing vinyasa routines, you move into a position with either an exhale or inhale. These are synchronized movements. The teacher gives the verbal signal, and you follow. The vinyasa routines place an emphasis on synchronization and flow.

Vinyasa Yoga is a bit more free-flowing than the first two mentioned yoga styles. It allows more freedom for movement. Anyone can make his own flow as long as he understands the concept, which takes some practice. Vinyasa yoga classes are particularly different from each other because practitioners are not limited by a rulebook or cut-and-dried sequence. As a result, vinyasa yoga practice is very diverse and you may have to try out several teachers to find out which class works best for you.