The advantages of yoga, an ancient Indian science, remain undisputed. It has long been known to blend physical, mental and spiritual aspects of exercise, and help treat conditions like asthma. But if you’re in a fitness rut and feeling more and more like a human pretzel, don’t worry. On International Yoga Day, we bring you a list of weird, quirky yoga movements that will help you get the most out of your workouts, while having fun along the way.
Dog yoga, or doga, combines stretching and meditation with the company of a furry yoga partner! According to dogamahny.com, like young children, dogs ‘copy’ the owner’s breathing habits. Devotees believe doga improves heart health and digestion in dogs and reduces stress in humans.
- Aerial yoga
For adrenaline junkies who find yoga too slow, this gravity-defying activity is just the thing. Hammocks and silk slings are used as props that aid the body in positioning and alignment. The technique also involves Pilates, gymnastics and dance! Some say hanging upside down on a sling has even helped made them grow up to 4cm taller – but don’t count on that.
- Tantrum yoga
If you’re looking for a calming yoga class, better steer clear from this one. Here, the idea is to scream your way to better health. While it includes traditional yoga, breathing, stretching and meditation, practitioners are also able to scream, yell, stomp and chest-pound. Needless to say, you will leave the class feeling relaxed and stress-free.
- Karaoke yoga
RDS Karaoke yoga1This workout is a little more ‘chilled out’ than you would be used to with traditional yoga. It involves television screens, a DJ and even an air guitar pose. Yogis are expected to sing, dance, stretch and sweat their way to physical fitness.
- Paddleboard yoga
If trying to do the Kala Bhairavasana (balancing on one arm and leg, while the other is in the air, pointed upwards) – destroyer of the universe pose – on solid ground wasn’t hard enough, now you can try doing it on a paddleboard in the middle of the ocean! The Stand Up Paddleboard (Sup) community is a worldwide organization that encourages yoga on water. With the water constantly keeping you in check, watch this form of yoga build your core strength and increase balance, stability and flexibility.
- Yoga raves
These classes begin with slow stretches and meditation, and at some point combine with music to become a full-blown dance party! Usually, non-alcoholic drinks and vegan or raw foods are provided too.
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- Harry Potter yoga
Fans of the wizarding world will love the magical touch to their yoga routine. Here, yogis practice magic spells in warrior pose, listen to passages from the Harry Potter saga during class and perform the ‘Downward Dumbledore’ pose, which muggles know as downward dog.
- Hoop yoga
With a focus on balance, flow and movement, adding a hula hoop to yoga moves can add flexibility and challenge your body in new ways. The Hoop Vinyasa website explains why yoga enthusiasts love this form so much: “We use yoga-based techniques to warm our muscles and connect with our breath, and hoop tricks to release fears and connect with our inner child.”
Can you combine yoga with sass? Apparently, yes. A fusion of ‘yoga and voguing’, this movement was invented by House of Voga, which hosts retreats all over the world. The exercise is inspired by Madonna, and the brand calls the practice the ‘haute couture of fitness’ – they do yoga fused with dance in designer wear.
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