Asthanga Yoga is new type of yoga that a friend and I tried for the first time this afternoon. We used to the Vinyasa Yoga, which is when all different poses flow together. Each Vinyasa class is different from the next, you do not do the same poses each class, but the different poses that you do all flow together whilst connecting the breath.
Now when I say that Asthanga Yoga is “new”, I mean that it is new to my friend and myself. Asthanga Yoga, I believe is the oldest type of yoga. Every Asthanga class is the same, you do the same poses every class. You do a each pose is in a series and you hold it for 5 – 10 breaths. The first series we did this afternoon was sun salutations and vinyasa (a ton of chaturanga and downward facing dog!) and some chair poses were added in that series as well. The next series was the balance pose (tree pose and standing straight leg poses) with some vinyasa added in and then we did seated poses with more vinyasa! Every pose you connect your breath with every step of the pose and we held downward facing down for 5 breaths. It was fun and different and I am very sore, but it was well worth it.
I will definitely be returning to that class. I would like to add this before I close. “In every Asthanga Yoga class, every time you come to the mat, you do the same poses but the body you come with will not be the same every time.” Our instructor ended class with that and that will stay with me for always.