Modern "Hatha Yoga" is not the same as traditional Haṭha Yoga, a system of practices to "raise and conserve the physical essence of life." (1) Nowadays the term "Hatha" more commonly refers to a stillness-based approach to asana practice, differentiated from the flowing styles that have become popular in the West.
Asana practice is only a small part of traditional Hatha Yoga, which was more centrally focused on practices of mudra and kumbhaka (pranayama). We are interested in the traditional practices that have trickled down to the modern day and also those that have been lost. Some seem completely outdated, and some simply don't fit the modern impressions of what yoga practice is. We will explore as many of them as we can.
We will do a series of posts on traditional and modern Hatha Yoga, including:
Don't hesitate to write with questions or comments.
1. Mallinson, James. "Hatha Yoga" entry in Vol. 3 of the Brill Encyclopedia of Hinduism.
Scott & Ida are Yoga Acharyas (Masters of Yoga). They are the head teachers of Ghosh Yoga. This blog is about their experience with yoga practice, study and teaching.
- Make the Hamstrings Strong, Not Long
- Understanding Chair Posture
- Lock the Knee History
- It Doesn't Matter If Your Head Is On Your Knee
- Bow Pose (Dhanurasana)
- 5 Reasons To Backbend
- Origins of Standing Bow
- The Traditional Yoga In Bikram's Class
- What About the Women?!
- What About the Hips?
- Why Teaching Is Not a Personal Practice
- The Central Psoas
- The 113 Postures of Ghosh Yoga