Editor’s Note: This article has been updated from its original published version, with specific Life Time yoga class suggestions.
The numerous types of yoga can be baffling, so first ask yourself what you’re looking for, suggests Jan Johnson, LifePower Yoga studio manager and instructor in St. Paul, Minn. Do you want it to be physically challenging? Do you want to feel a spiritual connection? Do you want to focus on flexibility?
Once you’ve decided on your goals, check out the various classes offered at your health club, gym, or nearby studios.
To help narrow your search, the table below outlines the four common styles of yoga. Remember: “If you don’t like a class, try another,” Johnson says. “Eventually you’ll find the style and teacher that resonate with you.”
|Yoga Style||Yoga Types||What to Expect||Life Time Class|
|This style is for those who want a workout with added stress-relief benefits. Participants flow through a sequence of poses one breath at a time. If you want a challenging, vigorous session, these are good choices.||SOL
|Alignment||Iyengar||Ideal for beginners and those with injuries. The holds are longer, giving you time to perfect your position and be present with the sensations of each pose. Props may be used to help you achieve each pose, or to limit or intensify sensations while practicing.||ROOT|
|Perfect for those looking to destress the body and mind, or for athletics types who need to release tension in their joints. Restorative practices utilize props to help relax and ease muscles, whereas yin practices limit the use of props to stimulate the connective tissue and bring greater mobility to the joints. These often call for holding poses for extended periods of time and include some meditative aspects.||SURRENDER|
|For those who like to sweat. Heated yoga allows for deeper stretching while providing an aerobic challenge. Heated vinyasa classes will create a cardiovascular challenge, while hot yoga will work the body through isometric holds.||FIRE
For more on these styles, visit “Yoga 4 You“.