(Last Updated on : 26-05-2017)
Hatha Yoga is that branch of the Yogic Philosophy
which deals with the health of the physical body and all that tends to keep it in its natural and normal state of health. It is a holistic yogic approach which includes moral disciplines as well as physical postures. It teaches a natural mode of living. It is also believed that Hatha Yoga
is a stress reducing practice. Hatha Yoga is an important branch of philosophy, because it gives man a healthy body and a good instrument with which to work and a fitting temple for the Spirit. Hatha Yoga preaches a sane, natural, normal manner of living and life, which, if followed will benefit anyone. It keeps close to nature and returns to natural methods in preference to those which have grown up around us in our artificial habits of living. Hatha Yoga is devoted to this care of the physical body.
The word Hatha represents opposing energies. In fact it can be said that Hatha Yoga is an attempt to balance both mind and body with the help of physical postures or asanas
. It includes purification processes, controlled breathing
and calming and relaxing of the mind and the body. The physical postures which are a part of Hatha Yoga include Hatha Yoga Asanas
which gives poise, strength and balance to the physical as well as the mental existence of the body. It is said that as the body gains physical balance the mind gets prepared for the path of enlightenment.
Breathing in Hatha Yoga
Hatha Yoga is the combination of physical exercises
with controlled breathing. By connecting the movement of a body with the rhythm of the breath, the mind becomes quite and more present in the practice. It lowers the heart rate and reduces anxiety and stress.
Relaxation in Hatha Yoga
Relaxation in Hatha Yoga is basically avoiding the tense condition of the muscles in everyday life. With the practice of Hatha Yoga, a state of relaxation reacts upon the mind and the mind is able to regain its normal poise and repose.
Human Body and Hatha Yoga
It has been said by the Yogis
that the body is an instrument in which and by which the Spirit manifests and works. They know that the fleshly covering is necessary for man's manifestation and growth in this particular stage of his development. They know that the body is the Temple of the Spirit. And they, consequently, believe that the care and development of the body is as worthy a task as is the development of some of the higher parts of man, for with an unhealthy and imperfectly developed physical body the mind cannot function properly, nor can the instrument be used to the best advantage by its master, the Spirit. In fact that is the reason as to why care of the physical body or Hatha Yoga has gained a lot of prominence among the Yogis.
Six Limbs of Hatha Yoga
Hatha Yoga includes six kinds of limbs. The six limbs of Hatha Yoga are Asana, Pranayama
, Pratyahara, Dharana
. Awakening of the Kundalini
is an important part of the Hatha Yoga. It can be said that with the practice of Hatha Yoga, an individual is able to gain slender body, cheerful and happy face, bright eyes, a sense of well being, control over the bindu and purification of the Nadi