yoga with instructor

Sri Swami Satyananda Saraswati (1923-2009) developed this form of yoga meditation incorporating ancient and traditional practices as well as information gleaned from modern medical-physiotherapy. A guru and yoga master in both India and the West, his teachings are propagated inside India as the Bihar School of Yoga and outside India as the Satyananda Yoga tradition.

Satyananda Yoga looks on the myriad traditional Indian yogic practices with equal vision, and acknowledges the validity of all of their methods for spiritual development. More gentle than some popular forms of yoga in the West, the Satyananda system incorporates the whole person, not just the body.

There is an emphasis on awareness and practitioners are encouraged to learn about all aspects of their personality through Yoga. Change is a process that takes place naturally as a consequence of regular practice with full awareness, rather than by forcing the mind and body beyond its limit.

Satyanda Yoga involves the practice of:

  • Asanas (postures)
  • Pranayama (breathing techniques)
  • Shatkarmas
  • Yoga Nidra (psychic sleep meditation)
  • Kriya Yoga, Kundalini Yoga, Mudras (gestures), Bandhas
  • Dhyan (meditation from the Tantras), e.g. Ajapa, Japa (meditation breath with mantra), chakra shuddhi (chakra purification), Yoga nidra (psychic sleep meditation), Tratak (candlelight and gazing meditation),
  • Naada yoga (yoga of sound, including singing, chanting, Om chanting)
  • Mantra Yoga (the repetition of sacred sounds)
  • Karma yoga
  • Juna yoga
  • Seva yoga

Satyananda Yoga uses practices in a traditional way, asanas (postures) to balance the body and mind through the physical body, pranayama (breathing practices) to work on the energy body (equated with Ki or Chi in other systems), and meditation to calm and focus the mind. It also takes a broader outlook by teaching and encouraging yogic lifestyles, not only for renunciates but also for householders and lay practitioners.

Initially inspired by his guru, Swami Sivananda Saraswati (1887-1963), Swami Satyananda went on to author over 80 books, including the well-known Asana Pranayama Mudra Bandha (1969), which is recognized internationally as one of the most systematic yoga manuals today and has been reprinted 17 times and translated into many languages. This book is Amazon.com’s best selling yoga book. Swami Satyananda also went on to found the International Yoga Fellowship (1956), the Bihar School of Yoga (1963), the Yoga Research Society (1988) and also in 1988, a charitable institution for aiding rural development Sivananda Math.

Bihar School of Yoga (BSY) provides trained sannyasins (initiates/renunciates) to teach yoga to groups, seminars, conventions and lecture tours around the world. Yoga has moved out of the caves of hermits and ascetics and into the mainstream of society. The work of BSY is continued by Swami Satyananda’s appointed successors: Swami Niranjanananda (b. 1960) and Swami Satyasangananda (b. 1953).

Sivananda Math – Where Spiritual Life meets Social Needs Seva, or service to humanity, is the basis of spiritual life. Swami Sivananda’s fundamental teachings were: “Serve, love, give, purify, be good, do good, meditate, realize.” He taught that spiritual life started with seva and culminated in meditation. His message was that serving others is serving God, and meditation was at the end of his list! The first precondition of sadhana (spiritual practice) is to recognize the misery, suffering and needs of others. Whatever one’s assets may be, they are not meant for benefiting oneself alone. One whose heart is open, who is selfless, and considers that all he has belongs to God, will realize the truth.To this end, Swami Satyananda founded Sivanand Math at Munger in 1984, in memory of his guru Swami Sivananda. Now there are branches all over the world following these principles.

gallery-11
Yoga presented in a child’s language can help counter the stress experienced by little ones living in a hurry-up world. Learn the benefits of teaching yoga for kids.

Our children live in a hurry-up world of busy parents, school pressures, incessant lessons, video games, malls, and competitive sports. We usually don’t think of these influences as stressful for our kids, but often they are. The bustling pace of our children’s lives can have a profound effect on their innate joy—and usually not for the better.

I have found that yoga can help counter these pressures. When children learn techniques for self-health, relaxation, and inner fulfillment, they can navigate life’s challenges with a little more ease. Yoga at an early age encourages self-esteem and body awareness with a physical activity that’s noncompetitive. Fostering cooperation and compassion—instead of opposition—is a great gift to give our children.

Children derive enormous benefits from yoga. Physically, it enhances their flexibility, strength, coordination, and body awareness. In addition, their concentration and sense of calmness and relaxation improves. Doing yoga, children exercise, play, connect more deeply with the inner self, and develop an intimate relationship with the natural world that surrounds them. Yoga brings that marvelous inner light that all children have to the surface.

When yogis developed the asanas many thousands of years ago, they still lived close to the natural world and used animals and plants for inspiration—the sting of a scorpion, the grace of a swan, the grounded stature of a tree. When children imitate the movements and sounds of nature, they have a chance to get inside another being and imagine taking on its qualities. When they assume the pose of the lion (Simhasana) for example, they experience not only the power and behavior of the lion, but also their own sense of power: when to be aggressive, when to retreat. The physical movements introduce kids to yoga’s true meaning: union, expression, and honor for oneself and one’s part in the delicate web of life.

Learn to Teach How Children Learn

Yoga with children offers many possibilities to exchange wisdom, share good times, and lay the foundation for a lifelong practice that will continue to deepen. All that’s needed is a little flexibility on the adult’s part because, as I quickly found out when I first started teaching the practice to preschoolers, yoga for children is quite different than yoga for adults.

If you’ve done your allocation of reading up on anything and everything pertaining to yoga, you must know by now that this practise has both physical and mental benefits.

Sure, yoga attained mainstream reputation more as a fulfilling fitness routine. But given how demanding life gets these days, more and more individuals are turning to yoga as a twofold elucidation for their weight related issues and stress or angst. Some of the important advantages of practising yoga on a regular basis are as following –

  • Strength and Flexibility – Many perceive that it is must to head to the gym and work out with latest equipments to increase strength and flexibility. But this thinking of theirs has a divergent method as well. With Yoga, one can build flexibility and strength all naturally, that too with methodologies that is holistic in nature.

Yoga poses reinforces and lengthen our body’s connective tissues in a very natural ways with physical postures practised for 1000s’ of years. It doesn’t matter if you are firm or flexible, strong or weak, yoga can help you transform your body and mind, while improving on your overall health.

  • Stress Relief – It is a well known truth that stress as a result of our hectic and unhealthy lifestyle is taking a toll on many. As a result of this many are attracting towards them, some serious illness. Answer to come out of stress is Yoga. Daily dose yoga routines calms both body and mind, while boosting our immune system and eliminating toxins that stress generates. Yoga should be inculcated into our lives, especially for students and professionals whose jobs are sedentary in nature.
  • Self-confidence and Self-esteem – While yoga makes you become healthy, agile and strong, it also help you enhance your self-image and self-confidence. Practising yoga creates a massive sense of pride that greatly improves the way you feel about yourself. It helps you realize your full potential in its true sense.
    “The body is your temple. Keep it pure and clean for the soul to reside in.”

    – B.K.S Iyengar

  • Breath Control – The way you breath has direct correlation with your mind. When a person is upset, his breath gets shallow and fast and when he is at ease and relaxed, his breath gets slow and deep. Slow and deep breath in-turn calms the mind. So, if you are anxious in nature, you can calm your mind with Yoga’s breathing techniques, which help you slow down your breath. Calming your mind with consistent and slow breath also eases your stress as well.
  • Weight Loss – It is well proven that practising yoga on a regular basis makes you less hungry, while helping you better food choices. As part of an overall healthy lifestyle, yoga is a great way to detoxify your body, stimulate waste elimination, enhance metabolism and lessen your craving for food.
  • Body Metabolism – Practising yoga is a great way to elevate heart rate for a longer period of time. This increase in heart rate brings about their own benefits, including – strengthening the heart, burning of excess fat and boosting the body’s metabolism
  • Immunity – Stable body, mind and spirit is the key to achieving a healthy life. Any kind of irregularity in the body affects the mind and vice versa. Yoga poses helps you achieve a balance between these 3 entities, thus enhancing your immunity.
  • Awareness and Focus. The mind is relentlessly swinging from the past to the future and back – but always fails to stay in the present. By minimally being conscious of this inclination of the mind, we can in fact save ourselves from becoming stressed and relax our mind. Pranayama help generate that alertness and bring the mind back to the present situation, where it can stay focused and happy.
  • Inner Peace –Calming your inner mind is the clear path to inner peace and Yoga helps you calm your mind while maintaining its balance.
    “Calming the mind is yoga. Not just standing on the head.”

     – Swami Sachitananda

  • Yoga Enhances Blood Circulation – We all know that oxygen is the basis of our lives and is required for every cell in the body. Oxygen helps us heal our wounds, destroy germs and bacteria from the body, and guarantee maintenance of strength and vitality of our living tissues. Blood circulation in our body is raised when Yoga is practised on a regular basis.

What makes yoga predominantly favourable is that it also boosts blood circulation to often-neglected sections of the body like connective tissues, joints and internal organs. Yogic body contractions gestures the body to send blood to those specific areas.

  • Detoxification Regular yoga practise helps you sweat, breathe deeply & consistently, while rising heart rate (enhanced blood circulation). These outputs of yoga helps individuals detoxify their body and mind effectively.
  • Overall Fitness – Yoga is one of the few physical activities that encourage wellness of the whole body – both psychologically & physically – without forming imbalances in our body that primarily guide to injuries & complications later on in life.