Yoga has incredible benefits for your body – like enhanced flexibility, strength and weight loss – with the added bonus of clearing your mind and melting away stress. But not every yoga class is for everyone. Here’s a primer on the basics so you can choose what’s right for you.
Vinyasa is the kind of practice that people envision when they’re thinking about trying yoga: students make slow, intentional movements that link the body with the breath, creating poses that are challenging but attainable even to first timers, and leaving with a quiet mind. Freedom Yoga, 580 Maple Avenue, Barrington. 508-981-9811
Yin Yoga offers a practice that’s opposite of the yang of vinyasa. Rather than moving through different asanas (series of poses designed to work together), yin yoga puts you in one gentle pose for a much longer period of time. It’s more mentally challenging than physically challenging, but the deep stretches you attain leave you feeling totally rejuvenated. Bristol Yoga Studio, 13R State Street, Bristol. 401-216-9642
Qi Gong is a gentle practice designed to promote women’s health and longevity, and helps them to age better by strengthening frequent stress spots, like the spine and hips. It’s great for older people looking to start a practice. Innerlight Center for Yoga and Meditation, 850 Aquidneck Avenue, Middletown. 401-849-3200
Ayurvedic Yoga happens in a warm, 80 degree room, and is a heart-centered flow class that integrates meditation with challenging poses that will strengthen and stretch your muscles and balance your inner energies. Shrine Studio, 384 Market Street, Warren. 401-247-2628
Power Yoga is a more active practice, which is great for people looking for a different kind of workout rather than a way to bliss out. The room is heated to 90 degrees to boost both stretching and your body’s ability to detox. Synergy Power Yoga, 32 Bay Spring Avenue, Barrington. 401-289-0966
Bikram Yoga is a practice unlike any other. It’s physically challenging, designed to be both a workout and a way to promote overall health through breathing exercises and deep stretching. You don’t have to be in perfect shape to try it – that’s what the practice is for. East Bay Bikram Yoga, 36 Gooding Avenue, Bristol. 401-217-9010