Anusara yoga, unlike other types of yoga, was introduced by an American yoga teacher named John Friend. A branch of Hatha yoga, Anusara yoga is among the most popular yoga types being practiced in studios across the United States and Europe. This yoga type is aptly named. Anusara, means “flowing with grace” in Sanskrit. The postures in Anusara are executed with soft-hearted devotion and open mindedness with the intention of aligning oneself with the flow of Supreme consciousness. If you believe that yoga should focus on more than just physical and mental development, this type would be a good choice. Anusara yoga has a spiritual side to it that focuses on intrinsic goodness above all. This yoga type teaches the students to see intrinsic goodness in everyone and respect differences. Anusara yoga can be classified into three parts: attitude, alignment and action. Attitude is what determines accomplishments and capabilities and it is the same in the case of Anusara yoga. The right attitude can be extremely powerful and has the ability to lead the students through the various poses of Anusara yoga. Anusara yoga also teaches the practitioners to reawaken their divine nature and live life fully, celebrating the joy it brings. According to John Friend, alignment is the “mindful awareness of how various parts of ourselves are integrated and interconnected.” and action is “natural flow of energy in the body, which provides both stability and joyful freedom.” It is demanded from the students of Anusara yoga that they align their body according to the basic principles of alignment. Correct attitude and proper alignment helps the practitioners learn how to perform the right action, which is the right pose.
Like most yoga types, Anusara yoga also focuses on proper breathing and correct postures. The students are led through a series of poses that has been proven to benefit them in a number of ways. The most prominent ones are physical attributes, like improved strength, flexibility, circulation, lung capacity and posture. But what will astonish you is the spiritual awakening that practicing Anusara yoga brings. You will find that attitude, alignment and action are principles that aren’t just limited to yoga. Anusara students find that their lives improved by practicing these principles in their daily routine. In a nutshell, Anusara yoga is the correct approach to physical, mental and spiritual well-being. The poses can sometimes be quite difficult to execute, which may not make it the best choice for beginners.