Let's Talk Yoga!
You don't have to speak fluent yogi here at Yoga Loft (we like to talk in plain English) but you may have heard some of these phrases during class or elsewhere so we thought we would put together a concise glossary of some of the phrases you may be familiar with.
If you have any others you would like us to add then let us know!
A respectful greeting or thanks.
Usually given at the end of a class, this gesture is used by our instructors to give thanks for participating in class. It is generally performed with hands in prayer at heart and a slight bow forward.
Shanti Shanti Shanti
Pose or Posture
An asana is the sanskrit word for all of our postures and poses in yoga. You may have heard us throw in a couple of these during class; Trikonasana (triangle pose), virabhadrasana, (warrior pose) to name a few!
Centres of Life Force
Chakras are points in the body that are the centres of ‘life force’ (or prana). There are 7 Chakras, each of which are centres of spiritual power in the human body.
Focal Point or Gaze
This is your focal point in a posture. During a forward bend your drishti (or gaze) could be towards your toes or your knees. Holding your drishti helps you keep your mind focused and calm, and your balance.
A Head Below Heart Posture
An inversion is very simply a posture where your head is below your heart. These postures can be as simple as standing forward folds and downward dog, or as gravity defying as head and handstands. Inversions are great for your circulation, they take pressure off your heart and also help your lymphatic system.
A Gesture of Hands and Fingers
A mudra is generally used to describe a positioning of the hands and fingers. There are lots of different types of mudras, and different positions are thought to affect the flow of energy through the body in different ways.
Breath or Life Force
Prana is the Sanskrit word for ‘life force’, or in other words ‘breath’ Connecting your breath with your movement keeps your mind and your body calm. Yoga focuses on teaching us to breathe calmly and steadily while exercising.
A Breathing Exercise
Pranayama is basically a breathing exercise. In yoga you try to deepen (or extend) your breath and there are a huge array of exercises designed to help you to do this. The deeper you breathe the calmer and healthier you are.
A resting pose taken at the end of class to relax the mind and body. Otherwise known as 'corpse pose' this is the 'ahhh' moment where you get to lie on your back with your feet and arms spread wide, close your eyes and be totally relaxed!
Tadasana, also known as ‘mountain pose’ is standing tall and strong on your mat, engaging your muscles to stand tall. It's done at the beginning of class and in-between standing poses.
Equal body, equal breath, equal mind.
Peace, Peace, Peace.
A diaphragmatic breath we use during our yoga practice.