What is Ashtanga Yoga? Know the eight limbs of this Yoga Practice

Ashtanga yoga, the term was first coined by an ancient saint and it is a kind of yoga. Read this article to know more about ashtanga yoga and its meaning.
Representational image

Representational image

The Sanskrit meaning of ashtanga yoga is 'eight limbs'. The term was initially coined by an ancient well-known saint named 'Patanjali'. He was the writer of 'Yoga Sutra'. As per his believes, if we want to overcome our sufferings and know our actual self, then one must follow these eight practices (limbs).

The prime purpose of Ashtanga yoga is to follow these eight limbs so that we could gain all the benefits of Yoga.

So, lets us know about the eight limbs of ashtanga.

Eight limbs of Ashtanga Yoga:

1. Yama (Moral code)

• Ahimsa (non-violence)

• Satya (Truthfulness)

• Asteya (nonstealing)

• Brahmacharya (Confidence)

• Aparigah (Non-possessiveness)

2. Niyama (Personal discipline)

• Shoucha (Purity)

• Santosh (Contentment)

• Tapa (Endurance)

• Swadhyaya (Self-study)

• Eshwar Pranidhan (Dedication)

3. Asana (Yoga positions)

A comfortable position that helps in attaining mental equilibrium.

4. Pranayama (breathing)

Control on breathing

5. Pratyahara (Withdraw senses)

Prepare mentally to gain the influence of the mind.

6. Dharana (Concentration)

Concentrate on an object.

7. Dhyan (Meditation)

Isolating your mind and focus on your soul through meditation.

8. Samadhi (Salvation)

Achieving pure bliss and satisfaction. When realizing that the Almighty is the final attainment of birth.

Origin of Ashtanga yoga:

The origin of Yoga was about five thousand years BC and is depicted in Vedic philosophy and tantras. Ashtanga was initially coined by an ancient renowned saint Patanjali the author of the book 'Patanjali Yoga Sutra' He has depicted this as the eight-fold path or the eight limbs.

About ashtanga yoga practices:

The fundamental series is represented as the 'Yoga Chikitsa' meaning 'Yoga therapy'. The prime goal is to release your body from any physical problems and provides you with good physical health. It functions on the well-being of any psychological or emotional level and possesses several other benefits.

Below are the depictions of ashtanga yoga practices:

• Dynamic:

It will unusually sweat a lot feeling like working hard.

• Strenght-building:

The chaturanga and the vinyasa and also regular repetition helps in building up strength.

• Challenging:

Most people think that they will be unable to perform several postures from the primary series but with practice, it becomes better.

• Tiring:

The therapy carries around ninety minutes to accomplish so you might feel tired but with gradually adding up postures, it becomes habituated.

• Breath-focused:

Only breathing helps you to accomplish this.

• Meditative:

If you learn by-heartedly at least a single yoga sequence, you'll get more focused on it.

• Structured:

the sequences are adjustive as per individual needs but every day all are going to follow similar postures until they experts in it. You will not decide about learning the poses rather it was already structured in it for you. 

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