There are many branches of the yoga tree, and the branch focused on movement also has many variations. We include yoga classes at Mountain Trek to help keep bodies stretched, relaxed, and ready for the day and good sleep. To help you decide which type of yoga is perfect for you, we’ve put together this list of six different kinds along with insider tips that further explain each.
Ideal for: Beginners
What it is: Hatha refers to any yoga practice that combines breathing techniques with poses. With each class, your goal is to develop balance and flexibility and to continue breathing with every pose and movement, so it tends to be very relaxing and restorative. Many guests at Mountain Trek love the last few series of poses during the morning session, which involves lying on the floor in a relaxed position called “shavasana” for 5 minutes.
Insider Tip: At Mountain Trek we tend to concentrate on slower movements between poses. However, other instructors might move (or “flow”) at faster rates. Be sure to check with them in advance to ensure you’re comfortable with the speed.
Ideal for: Those suffering from neck or back problems
What it is: Iyengar is a style of yoga that emphasizes proper alignment and the strengthening of joints and muscles. Props are often used such as straps and blocks to help you get into poses. Participants will stand, sit, and twist and if the injury isn’t too limiting, poses might also include backbends.
Insider Tip: According to the Clinical Journal of Pain this style of yoga helps improve chronic neck pain.
Ideal for: Weight loss
What it is: This style of yoga tends to be fairly fast-paced and is occasionally called “power yoga.” With each class you’re expected to move continuously throughout the class doing a series of lunging, bending, and stretching poses. (The most famous sequences of moves is called the sun salutation.) In more advanced classes you can expect to do headstands or shoulder stands, in which the feet are raised above the head. However, we typically avoid these positions at Mountain Trek, preferring instead the more gentle movements of Hatha.
Insider Tip: Of all the different types of yoga, Vinyasa is the best for weight loss as practitioners can burn up to seven calories a minute.
Ideal for: Building flexibility (and detoxing via sweat)
What it is: This style is often referred as “hot yoga” because studios are typically heated to 40°C (105°F) with a 40 percent humidity level. Each class includes various rapid breathing exercises as well as a series of 26 poses.
Insider Tip: Don’t forget your water bottle and towel! And it’s best not to eat 2 hours before a class so as to avoid nausea.
Ideal for: A more spiritual experience
What it is: The average session of this form of yoga is made up of exercise, breath work, meditation, and relaxation. The goal is to release the energy that devotees believe is stored at the base of the spine and by doing so, you calm the mind and energize the body.
Insider Tip: This style can be considered a bit out there so if you’re not keen chanting, perhaps try another discipline.
Ideal for: Seasoned yoga practitioners
What it is: This style of yoga is one of the most physically challenging. Practitioners can execute up to 70 poses in one session including upwards of 10 sun salutations, inversions and backbends.
Insider Tip: This style of yoga is excellent for developing strength and endurance but it’s also for veterans who are comfortable with many of the more difficult poses.
What is Mountain Trek?
Mountain Trek is the health reset you’ve been looking for. Our award-winning health retreat, immersed in the lush nature of British Columbia, will help you detox, unplug, recharge, and roll back years of stress and unhealthy habits. To learn more about the retreat, and how we can help you reset your health, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or reach out below: