• Sep,25, 2022

Is it chimichanga, or Chaturanga?  Don't worry, Here is all the Yoga Lingo and Terms so that you can speak the same language

TermDefinition
Yogato ‘yoke’ or ‘bind’ – often interpreted as ‘union’ (the union of breath, body and mind).
Asanaliterally translates as ‘seat’ – but the more modern interpretation of the word denotes physical postures or poses.
Bandhainternal muscular ‘locks’ that, when engaged, support the toning and lifting of strategic areas of the body
Chakrameaning ‘wheel’ – energy centres in the body located between the base of the spine and the top of the head.
Chaturangafour limbed staff pose or low plank, requires arm, shoulder and core strength.
Coreoften thought of as the abdominal muscles. However, it’s more accurate to think of it like an apple core, running from the top of your head to the inner arches of your feet.
Downward dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana)one of the most common yoga poses, like an inverted ‘V’ shape.
Drishtifocal point of gazing during meditation or yoga practice (useful during balancing poses!)
Hathaknown as yoga for the physical body. In Sanskrit, “Ha” represents sun and “tha” represents moon. Hatha is the basic style of yoga that forms the basis for most styles of yoga, often used to describe slower-paced classes with no flow to them.
Heart centrerefers to the centre of the chest. You’ll hear the term used as an instruction – for example, “lift your heart centre“. It can also be used to describe the location of the heart chakra – Anahata.
Mantraword, sound or phrase repeated either out loud (chanting) or in the mind – said to increase concentration while meditating.
Mudraa hand position / gesture used to aid concentration, focus and connection to yourself during your meditation and asana practice.
Nadithe energy channels through which prana or life force flows. Pranayama uses the breath to direct and expand the flow of prana in our energy channels – the nadis.
Namasteroughly meaning ‘the light within me bows to the light within you’ and generally said at the end of a yoga class, bowing the head with palms pressed together at the heart.
Oma mantra usually chanted at the beginning and end of yoga classes. Om ia tiny word with a multitude of meanings – said to be the origin of all sounds and the seed of creation. Often quoted as the “universal sound of consciousness”.
Patanjalia sage said to have compiled the Yoga Sutras, a guide or ‘instruction manual on how to live in order to advance along a spiritual path towards enlightenment
Pranalife energy; life force.
Pranayamabreathing exercises which clear the physical and emotional obstacles in our body to free the breath and so the flow of prana – life energy.
Sacruma triangular-shaped bone in the lower back.
Savasanameaning Corpse pose – relaxation pose, typically practiced at the end of a yoga class.
Shantimeaning ‘peace’ – sometimes chanted in class.
Sit / Sitting bonespart of the pelvis – the two bony protrusions on the underside of the buttocks that are most easily felt when sitting on a hard surface.
Sternumbreastbone – long, flat narrow bone that runs vertically down the centre of the chest.
Surya NamaskarSun salutations – a sequence of asanas. This dynamic yang sequence is a very popular sequence often used to warm up the body at the start of a yoga class.
Tailbonethe little bone at the end of your spine.
Ujjayicommonly translated as the ‘victorious breath’ or ocean breath because of the sound the breath makes at it enters and leaves a slightly constricted throat.
Upanishada collection of yogic texts of a religious and philosophical nature, written in India probably between c. 800 BCE and c. 500 BCE.
Vinyasamovement linked with breath. Postures are strung together in a short or longer flow.
Yang yogastyle of yoga that is more rhythmic, repetitive and energetic – great for building strength and fitness.
Yoga NidraAlso known as “yogic sleep” or “effortless relaxation”, Yoga Nidra can be described as the conscious state between wakefulness and sleep. It invites a state of harmonious, restful being. From here, we can be healed, restored and awakened to our deepest, all-knowing, all-welcoming self.
Yin yogaseries of long-held, passive floor poses that target the fascia and connective tissues in the body. We need a combination of Yin and Yang in yoga (as in life!) to keep us balanced and healthy.
Abhyasa (ah-bee-yah-sah)“constant exercise,” this describes a willful, focused and engaged spiritual practice.
Adho (ah-doh)Translated as “downward”, as in Adho Mukha Svanasana for downward facing dog.
Ahimsa (a-him-sah)Practicing non-violence or non-harming towards all living things. Ahimsa is the first of the Yamas, or moral codes listed in the Yoga Sutra
Ananda (a-nun-dah) An ecstatic state of complete bliss and love.
Apana (ah-pan-nah)This vayu or internal “wind” is the second-most important of the five types of prana in Hatha Yoga and Ayurveda. Located at the pelvic floor, it regulates the outward flow of prana from the body and governs the elimination of physical wastes and toxins from the body.
Ardha (ar-dha)Translates to “half,” as in Ardha Chandrasana or Half Moon Pose
Asana (a-sa-na)The physical yoga poses in hatha yoga. Each yoga pose name in Sanskrit ends with asana.
Ashram (ash-rem)A yoga hermitage or a school of yoga.
Ashtanga (ash-tan-ga) Translated as “eight-limbed yoga,” this is the eight-limbed path described by Patanjali in the Yoga Sutras. These eight stages build upon each other and lead the practitioner to a state ofenlightenmentt or samadhi
Atman (aht-muh-n)The transcendental and eternal Self or indwelling spirit
Bandha (bahn-da)An energetic lock or seal in hatha yoga, requiring a contraction of muscles and internal focus to constrain the flow of prana or energy. Bandhas are often used in pranayama to promote energy flow and maintain optimal health. The three main locks or binds used are Mula Bandha (root lock), Uddiyana Bandha (naval lock), and Jalandhara Bandha (throat lock).
Bhagavad Gita (buhg-uh-vuhd-gee-tah)The oldest Sanskrit book on yoga that is embedded in the larger Mahabharata epic. This text contains the teachings on karma yoga, samkhya yoga, and bhakti yoga.
Bhakti (bahk-ti)The practice of cultivating love and devotion directed toward the Divine.