Yoga  is a practice that comes with a lot of confusion and misinformation because of the complexity surrounding it.

Some consider this practice to be an exercise, but it’s a lot more than just building flexibility. It’s about balance (physical and emotional), awareness and concentration. Yoga is called a practice because, just like learning to play the piano or sing, it must be done over and over again so growth happens. Yoga is not called an exercise, nor is it a meditation, although those two things are certainly incorporated into the practice.

The origin of this ancient discipline dates back thousands of years to India, as well as documents such as the Rigveda, a collection of ancient Indian Sanskrit hymns, prayers and devotionals. We can also detect glimmers of it in Shamanism and in Buddhism.

Modern yoga is based on five basic principles that were created by Swami Sivananda. The five principles include: relaxation, exercise, diet, thinking and meditation.  The idea is that all work together to create a healthy balance of mind, body and spirit.

Yoga is an important activity of the Spirit Vine Ayahuasca Retreat, which includes a comprehensive program that also includes meditation, diet, regressions, art work and Ayahuasca ceremonies. Polivoy, the founder of Spirit Vine Retreats, is a physiotherapist who practiced privately for more than 20 years, transitioned to explore the Spirit World.

Breathing (Pranayama)

PranayamaMany suggest mastering this first in yoga, and proper breathing is something you should master in everyday life.

Pranayama is a word made of up two phrases:  prana, which is “life force” and “ayama,” which means to extend or draw out the life force.

There are various kinds of breathing to warm or cool.  Breathing and asanas are often linked; hence, the the vinyasa yoga style, where the breath and the pose are coordinated to move together.

When Your Breath Becomes Shallow…

Although it’s an almost automatic response to take short, shallow breaths when stressed and anxious–or when you have “brain fog”– apply this yogic technique to everyday life.
It will bring you right down and you’ll be able to think, cope and problem-solve much better.

Asanas–core of the Practice

There are 80 to one thousand poses to the practice, with some focusing on balance, strength, flexibility, or even helping with some physical and emotional ailments. There are also poses by anatomy, which focuses on one’s knees, one’s hips, one’s lower back, one’s arms, one’s bladder, one’s brain and more.

For instance, a group of gentle yin-yoga poses (yin-yoga poses are slower and held for longer times) have been, proven to reduce cortisol, which can cause sleep-deprivation and depression, says the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Mudra Sealing

Anjali Mudra is a hand gesture, with palms touching as if in a prayer, that’s typically done both before and at the end of class.

It’s a sign of reverence and heightens awareness and seals the practice. Ajanti mudra  helps calm the brain, reduce stress and anxiety and can help to create flexibility of the arms, wrists, fingers, and hands. “Now you can take what you learned and bring it to the outside world,” is something yogis often hear.

The mantra at the Spirit Vine Ayahuasca Retreat is to help you achieve a state of harmony and wellness. It is a supportive community where you will meet other like-minded individuals interested in spiritual development and a deep need to align with their true essence.