Core power yoga is one of the multi-disciplinary and more vigorous types of yoga that strengthens and empowers the body, mind, and spirit. The practice of core power yoga aims to teach students to communicate with their bodies and access their spiritual core so they can achieve inner power. This inner power then builds the foundation for students to tap into their mental power to focus, and physical power to keep up with the strenuous yoga routine.
A lot of people who sign up for yoga for beginners classes are often not sure of what exactly to expect. Oftentimes, they also don't know that there are many styles of yoga they can choose from to see which one would suit them. So if you're interested in learning and finding out for yourself why core power yoga has made a lot of buzz in the fitness world, here are some of the essential information you will need.
A Brief History
Sometimes also called Power Vinyasa, core power yoga is considered by many as a Westernized style of Ashtanga Yoga. An Ashtanga Yoga instructor named Beryl Bender Birch was the one who named this specific style of yoga practice as "core power yoga." The practice was brought to the west by the yogis who were inspired by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois, a renowned Sanskrit scholar who shared his knowledge and philosophies on his style of Ashtanga Yoga. Since then, Western yogis who saw the value of this style of yoga started teaching it and the practice came to be known as core power yoga.
How Does Core Power Yoga Work
Core power yoga works because it's strenuous and vigorous enough to get the physical results you want, but without the typical feeling of exhaustion after a long workout session. This is because as physically demanding core power yoga may be, it still involves the spiritual and/or meditational elements of the Indian practice. Simply put, core power yoga allows you to get both physical and mental exercise.
Combination of Styles in Core Power Yoga
Another way to describe core power yoga is that it is a multi-disciplinary style of yoga. By this we mean it combines different styles and disciplines which all ultimately aim to give those who practice it more flexibility, increased strength through training, and aerobic activity. Core power yoga can be seen as being made up of three types of yoga: power yoga, core yoga, and hot yoga.
Power yoga became popular in the West because it suited those who were interested in learning yoga, but wanted to be physically fit by focusing more on the physical aspects rather than the spiritual and meditative. Power yoga involves doing yoga poses in rapid succession, while not necessarily following any set series of stretches and poses typically associated with Ashtanga yoga.
When people hear "core yoga," they immediately think of how yoga can be used for weight and core strength training. While this is partly true, there are also many other techniques used in core yoga such as Kundalini Core Yoga. The main difference between core yoga and the typical core strength training is that the former thrives on the concept of breath and breathing as the root of inner strength.
Some schools and centers that teach core power yoga offer classes that incorporate hot yoga, or the use of heat elements in practicing the craft. Some yogis who teach core power yoga believe that the incorporation of heat in the sessions would minimize the risk of muscular injuries among students and also aid in their detoxification process. If you want to do core power yoga but prefer the more basic yoga for beginners classes, choose one that gives you the option of practicing it in a non-heated room.
Three Programs in Core Power Yoga
The three main programs in core power yoga are the following: Core Power, Unlocking Athletic Power, and Soul of Strength. Core Power is designed to stretch and strengthen the back and abdominal muscles. The Core Power program involves doing power yoga poses in combination with moves specifically designed to tone the muscles. The Unlocking Athletic Power program focuses more on developing strength not just on the abs and back, but also the hips and pelvis. Lastly, the Soul of Strength program also involves doing fast-paced and strenuous yoga poses, but becomes more challenging because of its emphasis on the mind-body connection.
Benefits of Core Power Yoga
Because core power yoga combines several styles and disciplines, and typically involves 3 distinct programs, you can say that the benefits you'll get from practicing it is a lot more than what you could get doing just one specific yogic style. The fast-paced flow of movement in core power yoga ensures that it's an effective way of keeping physically fit, so you get the physical benefits of yoga such as strength, flexibility, endurance, etc.
The incorporation of the element of core yoga (that focuses on breathing as the root of inner strength) also means that students will reap benefits of increased lung capacity and having normalized breathing patterns. These in turn help students to relieve and manage stress, and even help in dealing with asthma and other respiratory conditions. Learning yoga poses and strategies to concentrate on breathing also means that you will be able to learn techniques for achieving calmness and inner focus.
As mentioned, not all classes of core power yoga are done in heated rooms. But if you decide to brave it out in your yoga clothes and go the whole nine yards in your yoga for beginners class, doing core power yoga in a heated room would let you sweat out more and thus better rid your body of toxins. Core power yoga combined with heat yoga is also very effective in promoting weight loss, which is one of the most popular reasons people have for learning it.
So if you're planning on learning how to do yoga for both physical and mental reasons, this style of core power yoga is one you should look into. Not only do you get more focus on building physical strength, endurance, and flexibility, you will also reap the mental and spiritual benefits that are typically associated with all other forms of yoga.