We give you the opportunity to take part in our yoga sessions on almost every camp. Not only are these yoga sessions a good way to stretch out your muscles after a hard days riding, they also provide you with that important time to gather your thoughts and get the right energy flowing in your body.
During the many years that Yoga has been around it has been passed on from teacher to apprentice. This has divided Yoga in to many schools and methods, you can learn more about some of these methods here on this page.
Guru Shri K. Pattabhi Jois, or Guruji as his disciples called him, taught a part of yoga known as Ashtangayoga. The goal is to be able to control your mental activity so that you eventually can reach the state of total enlightenment. Ashtangayoga is also called yoga of the eight limbs.
The eight limbs describe the road to liberation from the disturbance that distracts the soul from the total yoga experience. The first four steps contain a series of outer exercises.
1. Abstemious (yama) is about your attitude towards others. You should rid yourself of angry thoughts against others including yourself. This step also asks you to train your mind to step back from the need for objects. The philosophy of yoga is to live in harmony with yourself and find the true happiness from inside and not within objects.
2. Discipline (niyama) is to learn to control your mind and focus on finding that inner peace. By eating the right foods for your body and acting the way that is right for you. It will lead to you becoming happier and more peaceful.
3. Body positions (asana) by practicing the different positions within yoga you will get a better poster, become healthier and feel a lightness in your body. After practicing this step you will also find that your body and soul will start moving simultaneously and it will be easier to live in the moment.
4. Breathing control (pranayama). The one who has control over its breathing will also have control over the activities of the mind. There are three steps of breathing control. Puraka – which means breathing in, kumbhaka – holding your breath, and rechaka – breathing out. Since breathing is an unconscious reflex of the body, the ability to control it will also lead to deeper aspects of your mind.
The last four steps contain a series of inner exercises. All of these steps are connected to each other and as you gain control over one step you move on to the next.
5. Closing of the senses (pratyahara) – The closing of a sense means that you shut down the unconscious activity of senses like smell and hearing, and also empty your mind of bad thoughts.
6. Concentration (dharana) – Here you follow up step five with learning to lead your attention to one single thought that won’t be distracted by sounds, scents or other thoughts. You will become more peaceful and able to see your thoughts without paying them any attention.
7. Meditation (dhyana) – This step is a deeper kind of concentration. It means you’ll be able to totally shut your mind and focus on one thing only.
8. Self enlightenment – This is the stage that not many people reach. Here you have total control over both mind and body. Your brain will be swallowed by your soul, which will make your body vibrate. It’s called the total yoga experience.
All of these stepping-stones to the total yoga experience can also be used in everyday life. If you eat food that is good for your body you will feel better inside and it will radiate through your skin. The way you act towards others also affects the way they act towards you. And if you are content and believe in yourself, you will also be more likely to make the right decisions throughout life.
This is a system of yoga that was first introduced by Yogi Swatmarama and is the most common kind of yoga in Europe. Hatha yoga includes a series of physical exercises that creates balance between the body’s energy levels to achieve physical and mental wellbeing. The methods used are cleansing processes, body positions, breathing control and meditation. Hatha is seen as a preparatory stage of physical purification that the body needs for higher meditation.
The word hatha is a compound of the words ha and tha meaning sun and moon. Yoga means union and together with hatha it means union between the different energies, which the sun and the moon represent. There are six different kinds of cleansing processes in Hatha yoga.
1. Neti – Cleansing of nose and sinuses, can be done in different ways. But the most common method is to rinse the nose.
2. Dhauti – Is practiced to cleanse the digestive system, nose, ears, teeth, tongue and scalp.
3. Nauli – Means that you rotate the abdominal muscles to strengthen and cleanse intestines and vaginal canal.
4. Basti – To strengthen and cleanse the colon.
5. Kapalabhati – Is a breathing technique that vitalizes and cleans the lungs and the anterior part of the brain.
6. Traktak – A concentration exercise that strengthens the eyes and increases the ability to focus your attention on one object.
Bikramyoga is one of the most physical methods of yoga. It is based on 26 positions from Hatha yoga that is practiced in a room at a temperature of 40°C. The warm temperature is meant to simulate the warm climate in India, which also gives the most beneficial effects.
Why Bikramyoga is considered one of the most physical methods of yoga is mainly because of the warm temperature it is performed in. The challenge lies within holding tough body positions, control over breathing and peace of mind in such warm environment. But even if it’s hard, the heat is also meant to help you.
The warm temperature makes you relax and soften up tense muscles, which makes it easier to stretch them out. The heat also increases the circulation of the blood and expands the capillaries, which results in more oxygen for muscle tissue and organs. The most important benefit of the heat is that it starts up the sweat mechanism, which is the body’s natural healing system. And in addition the sweat mechanism assists the detoxification of the body.