India is the birthplace of yoga. In the land of Ghandi, practicing yoga is a must, to travel differently, to escape while refocusing on yourself and recharging your batteries. Doing yoga in India by the sea, by the Ganges or facing the mountains, can help us meditate and become fully aware of ourselves. We have unearthed 4 peaceful spots for you to do yoga in India, so that you can combine sport and travel.
Yoga in India: Art Of Living Ashram, Bangalore
The Art of Living International Center, a 65-acre campus high above the Panchagiri Hills outside Bangalore, is a favorite retreat for yogis seeking peace and spirituality. This spot is the perfect place to practice yoga in India, with a view of the mountains, the lush gardens, the lake and the organic farm that border the center. Yoga classes are free, but in return guests are expected to participate in household chores, such as cooking, cleaning, and general upkeep of the ashram.
> Address: 21st Km, Kanakapura Road, Udayapura, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560082, India
Kalari Kovilakom, Kerala
In the south of Kerala, a green paradise in India, one can stay in the Kalari Kovilakom ashram. This peaceful retreat allows you to follow a yoga class, supervised by renowned teachers. The setting is idyllic: a house with the typical architecture of this region of India where people come here to meditate but also to detoxify their body and mind, thanks in particular to the Ayurvedic cuisine offered to you on square. At Kalari Kovilakom, a large part of the practice is Yoga Nidra, an ancient meditation technique that helps to free oneself from negative emotions and restore a good quality of sleep. This yoga course is also an opportunity to visit Kerala, its tea and spice plantations, to take a short cruise on the backwaters…
> Address: Payyallur, Kollengode, Palakkad, Kerala 678506, India
Ashiyana Yoga Retreat, Goa
To do yoga in India, there’s nothing like the Ashiyana Yoga Retreat Village in Goa. We immediately fall in love with its unique architecture, especially its small wooden houses and its luxury eco-lodges in the heart of lush tropical gardens, statues and fountains. They practice yoga and mantra chanting inside the shala (meditation center), with a view of the peaceful nature and the Arabian Sea of Goa. To find out what to do in the region, read our full article on Goa, the pearl of the Orient in India.
> Address: Junas Waddo, Mandrem, Goa 403527, India.
Parmarth Niketan, Rishikesh
If you want to do yoga in India, and more specifically in the Rishikesh region, head to the Parmarth Niketan ashram. At the gates of the Himalayas, not far from the sources of the Ganges, this ashram is well known to local yogis. With approximately 1000 rooms in its eight-acre campus, this little cocoon on the banks of the sacred river offers an extensive yoga program for beginners as well as for regular followers and allows you to indulge in hatha yoga, yoga nidra or even nada. yoga.
Address: Main Market Road, Near Ram Jhula, Swarg Ashram, Rishikesh, Uttarakhand 249304, India.
Types of yoga in India
The origin of the word yoga goes back to Vedic Sanskrit, where it means “to unite”. For other philologists, it could also derive from another root meaning “to concentrate.”
The term yoga has come to designate a set of practices that make it possible to achieve “liberation” for various Asian religions: Buddhism, Jainism and Hinduism. Initially focused on meditation and breathing techniques, yoga became popular in the 20th century for its benefits for both the body and mind.
Today, there are between 20 and 30 different forms of yoga. Here are some of the most practiced styles today.
The word hatha means “strength” in Sanskrit. Hatha yoga is a type of yoga in which postures or asanas and breathing techniques or pranayama are combined in a single session that usually lasts 90 minutes.
It became popular in the West from the beginning of the 20th century because it responded to the search, especially in certain intellectual circles, for a healthier lifestyle and the growing interest in exoticism and, in particular, in the Orient. Often presented as the first codified form of yoga, it is said to date back to the Middle Ages, when it benefited from Shiva and tantric influences. Today it is one of the most practiced forms of yoga.
In Sanskrit, the word kundalini means circular, but it can also refer to snake , as in early second millennium Tantrism. The word kundalini has been associated with certain forms of yoga since the 15th century and appears in the sacred texts of Hinduism.
The introduction of this form of yoga to Europe in the 1930s was the work of Carl Jung, the famous Swiss psychiatrist and psychoanalyst who was also fascinated by spirituality and the Orient. But he was only interested in theory and not in practice. At first, Kundalini Yoga focused mainly on mediation and repetition of mantras.
Developed in southern India, in Mysore, by Patthabhi Jois (1915-2009), this form of yoga takes its name from the Sanskrit word ashtanga , meaning “eight limbs” in reference to the eight limbs (or limbs) . of yoga defined by Patanjali.
Ashtanga yoga has become very popular in the last two decades and has been especially successful in the Nordic countries. By offering participants an unvarying sequence that quickly transitions from one pose to another with “sporty” transitions such as pushups, Ashtanga Yoga has attracted a primarily young audience seeking a combination of sport and fitness while remaining grounded. in a spiritual tradition.
This form, also called “Power Yoga” , owes its name to the combination of nyasa (to place) and vi (in a certain way) which refers to the synchronization of movement with breathing. Thus, each movement is linked to a particular way of breathing.
Vinyasa yoga is practiced, like the Ashtanga yoga from which it derives, by performing a sequence of postures and movements that are in harmony with the breath. However, the order of the postures that make up the sequence is not fixed in visyana yoga, where each teacher adapts the sequence to the needs of the practitioners.
This is the latest and most popular form of yoga in India. Bikram yoga is named after its founder, Bikram Chaudhury, who developed this style in the United States in the 1970s, where he had settled.
Its particularity is that it is practiced in a room overheated to almost 40º with 40% humidity in the air to recreate the atmosphere of Calcutta, the birthplace of B. Chaudhury in northern India. Each 90-minute session consists of a quick sequence of 26 postures selected for their health benefits that practitioners repeat twice between two periods of breathing techniques at the beginning and end of the session.