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Viniyoga – Yoga for Everyone

What is Viniyoga?

This question is very typical because, even though it’s been around for a very long time, Viniyoga as a tradition is not always familiar.

Viniyoga is an ancient Sanskrit word meaning “appropriate application” and this definition can be applied to any situation – not just yoga. But when we use the term Viniyoga in the yogic sense, we are using it to describe a specific tradition of practice that has been handed down over many decades through the teachings of T. Krishnamacharya and T.K.V. Desikachar of Chennai, India.

Every body is different and Viniyoga as a style of yoga adapts the practice to the each person’s specific condition, needs and interests so it becomes uniquely personalized to each individual. Most people get introduced to Viniyoga through practicing the physical postures, a/k/a asana.

What is unique about the Viniyoga approach to asana practice?

  • Breath Centered. The approach is breath centered. Each movement originates and is synchronized with the breath. Students learn to match the pace of movement with the potential of the breath. As the breath becomes more calm, the body and mind can relax more fully.
  • Function Over Form. There is no “one size fits all” in Viniyoga because the purpose of the pose is emphasized, not the “correct” form. Any posture can be modified to make it more or less challenging which is in keeping with the emphasis on the individual’s abilities and needs.
  • Sequencing. Sequencing refers to how poses are combined to produce a desired effect based on the intention of the practice. Viniyoga instructors assess the individual and the purpose of the practice to create a unique, not canned, program.
  • Combination of Repetition and Stay. Throughout a Viniyoga practice, repetition (movement into and out of a pose) will be combined with stay (holding in a pose for several breaths) to achieve specific purposes. For example, repetition is useful for warming up the body while stay builds strength.

In summary, Viniyoga is the science of appropriate application, meeting the individual where he/she is by using time tested techniques. Because of this focus, practitioners of all levels and abilities are welcome since classes are designed around a specific intention rather than level of experience. We encourage you to turn your attention inward and discover your individual needs, interests and desires.

Joanne Thompson

Joanne Thompson

Founder/Owner at Yoga for Self

Health is a precious gift and my goal is to help you live a healthier, happier life through yoga. Every private session is uniquely designed just for you. For a free telephone consultation call me at 303.818.4181. Discover whether personalized, private yoga instruction is right for you.
Joanne Thompson

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