HATHA: A FORGOTTEN APPROACH
ue to the rapid growth of health awareness, today, we have a super wide range of group classes and styles to choose from. The art of slowing down and self-care can be broken up into gentle practices and leisure. Depending on your flavour of choice and how you wish to bring balance back into the body, mind systems, you can dive into – massage, naturopathy, restorative yoga but the principle comes down to slowing down and deepening our breath, tapping into our parasympathetic nervous system. When we make room of deep breaths, we are essentially injecting fresh oxygen and energy into the body. Every time we make room for slowing down the outward breath, we allow the natural toxins of the body to exit and it will naturally bring calmness to the mind, balancing the whole nervous system. After all, in yoga, we see life is not based on of how many years we live but how many breaths we take. This definitely raises the question on how do we spend each breath, the activities we engage in and the supportive company we keep.
What better way to experience such quality of breath practice than to open the door of the lost approach – Hatha yoga.
The term Hatha is derived from two Sanskrit words – “Ha” Sun and “Tha” Moon. These two forces directly refer to balancing our physical, energetic body and our mental, calming body. This implies that the practice is made up of both energizing and calming techniques.
Zooming into the science, the longer you hold a posture the more benefits you get as oppose to going from one pose to the other continuously. Hatha is the science of purifying and detoxifying the body. There are many ways to interpret this, we often think of sweating toxins out but actually the more e slow the practice down and hold each posture for quite some time, we are not sweating at all but allowing the body to eliminate toxins naturally. The practice will always hold three sections in the session, - asana (yoga postures), pranayama (breath expansion) and a humble approach towards meditation – “dyana” a state of continuous awareness with no interruption.
The challenge – where to find such an authentic approach considering we have so much to choose from? Here are some of our top picks based on teachers and linages: