Hatha Yoga is a branch of yoga that contains a system of physical techniques, including the practice of asanas (postures) and pranayama (breathing exercises). The Sanskrit word ‘hatha’ can be translated two ways – to mean forceful/wilful (alluding to the yoga of activity), or as ‘ha’ (sun) and ‘tha’ (moon), alluding to the yoga of balance. This style of yoga is a process of purification of the gross, subtle and spiritual aspects of the body. By using the body as an instrument we build greater awareness of our selves and our consciousness, and we prepare to enter deeper spiritual practice, such as meditation.

As the term ‘Hatha Yoga’ really just indicates a physical form of practice, many of the styles of yoga practiced now (Ashtanga, Iyengar, Vinyasa etc) also fall under the umbrella of Hatha Yoga. The practice itself emphasizes proper diet, processes to internally purify the body, regulation and control of the breath (particularly during the physical practice), and the sequence of postures designed to allow a free flow of energy throughout the body.

Hatha Yoga is a branch of yoga that contains a system of physical techniques, including the practice of asanas (postures) and pranayama (breathing exercises). The Sanskrit word ‘hatha’ can be translated two ways – to mean forceful/wilful (alluding to the yoga of activity), or as ‘ha’ (sun) and ‘tha’ (moon), alluding to the yoga of balance. This style of yoga is a process of purification of the gross, subtle and spiritual aspects of the body. By using the body as an instrument we build greater awareness of our selves and our consciousness, and we prepare to enter deeper spiritual practice, such as meditation.

As the term ‘Hatha Yoga’ really just indicates a physical form of practice, many of the styles of yoga practiced now (Ashtanga, Iyengar, Vinyasa etc) also fall under the umbrella of Hatha Yoga. The practice itself emphasizes proper diet, processes to internally purify the body, regulation and control of the breath (particularly during the physical practice), and the sequence of postures designed to allow a free flow of energy throughout the body.

The traditional aims of Hatha Yoga include physical siddhis (special powers or bodily benefits such as slowing the effect of aging) and spiritual liberation (moksha). In the 20th century, the asana framework of Hatha became popular throughout the world as a form of physical exercise for strength, flexibility, and stability within the body, and relaxation/concentration for the mind.

Hatha Yoga is a tool for holistic health. In order to reach the highest stages of yoga and experience Atman, our true self, we must begin with a dedicated practice of Hatha Yoga. The discipline and devotion involved in this path lead eventually to a state of self-realisation or enlightenment.

The traditional aims of Hatha Yoga include physical siddhis (special powers or bodily benefits such as slowing the effect of aging) and spiritual liberation (moksha). In the 20th century, the asana framework of Hatha became popular throughout the world as a form of physical exercise for strength, flexibility, and stability within the body, and relaxation/concentration for the mind.

Hatha Yoga is a tool for holistic health. In order to reach the highest stages of yoga and experience Atman, our true self, we must begin with a dedicated practice of Hatha Yoga. The discipline and devotion involved in this path lead eventually to a state of self-realisation or enlightenment.