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Up-Level Your Practice: Advanced Yoga

BY: Ashley Dodson
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Advanced yoga is not for the faint of heart. Devoted yoga students everywhere develop strength and flexibility through a variety of challenging postures, guaranteed to invigorate both the physical body and the mind. Bringing balance to the mind, heart, body and spirit, yoga is an opportunity for learning and growing into a deeper daily practice of health and wholeness.

 

The good news is that, while advanced yoga is not for everyone, just about anyone can participate in the practice. If the sequence of basic yoga asanas has become natural and comfortable, the next level of advanced yoga positions may be for you. There are some simple ways to go deeper in your practice.

 

Basic yoga vs. advanced yoga

There are some differences in basic yoga and advanced yoga. For example, the length of time spent in postures increases. In basic yoga, students are not required to remain balanced in a posture for 60 to 90 seconds as they are in advanced yoga, nor are they required to fully complete a sun salutation following each posture.

 

Another difference is that the strength required for each posture increases. Warrior 1, 2 and 3 are all practiced. Bridge turns into Wheel. Side Plank becomes more challenging when the outer leg is lifted. Advanced yoga encourages mental acuity, as it requires the body to push itself into a more concentrated practice.

 

Try advanced yoga at home

If you are adding immeasurable value to your household as a stay-at-home mom, this may be the right step for you. During nap time, consider using an Advanced Yoga DVD. Rodney Yee is an excellent and popular teacher who has created yoga DVDs and streaming online videos for athletes, for strength training and advanced yoga. When at home, remember to focus on form, without straining, in order to prevent injury.

 

Take an advanced yoga class

A great teacher can help you move from basic yoga poses, such as Sun Salutation, Bridge, Plough and Triangle, into Crow, Eagle, Pigeon and Warrior Poses. Traditionally, teachers keep an eye out for their students' form and posture and can help you successfully transition into the next level of yoga. The added bonus of a classroom setting is the other people in the studio who are growing on the same journey with you, which is very encouraging.

 

Give Bikram yoga a chance

Bikram is another form of advanced yoga. Admittedly, “hot” yoga can seem a bit intimidating. Why in the world would anyone want to work out in 105 degree F temperatures? Well, there are a few good reasons. Considering heat encourages the body to sweat profusely, a larger amount of toxins is released, helping rid your system of what could potentially destroy it. The heat also allows for increased flexibility because the muscles are relaxed through the warmth created in the body. Bikram focuses on rejuvenation and wellness of the entire body, positively affecting each system in the body boosting blood flow, circulation and oxygen intake. Be sure to consume large amounts of water in order to avoid dehydration and, again, be careful not to push too hard in these advanced poses.

 

 

Explore advanced yoga classes before you step foot into a studio with GaiamTV.com.

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