I have been practicing Yoga and Pranayama (the yogic practice of breath regulation) for many years, and I have always been thinking that it was not worth incorporating such huge, traditional disciplines into MMQG so as not to overcomplicate its practice.
Yet, in the last 2 years, with the Covid pandemic, I have seen how much important is to take care of the quality of our breathing. So, I decided to see which specific parts of these two millenary practices I could bring into MMQG.
The Yoga styles and practices I teach are:
- Patanjali’s Ashtanga
- Yoga Nidra
- Yin Yoga
Patanjali’s Ashtanga Yoga is the path outlined in the Yoga Sutras by Patanjali, one of the sacred texts of Classical Yoga, and the oldest one, which was compiled in the early centuries CE. The practice mentions the development of eight branches or Angas (limbs). Ashtanga Yoga represents one of the most efficient and safe ways to ensure health for each and every person, according to the yogic tradition.
Patanjali’s Ashtanga Yoga‘s eight branches are:
- Yama, moral restrictions
- Niyama, disciplines
- Asana, physical postures
- Pranayama, control of the breath and energy
- Pratyahara, the withdrawal of the senses
- Dharana, concentration
- Dhyana, meditation
- Samadhi, the enlightened state of full conjunction and fusion between subject and object
Pranayama (प्राणायाम) is the practice of focusing on the breath. In Sanskrit, Prana means “vital life force”, and Yama means to gain control. In yoga, pranayama is a means to elevate our being’s prana shakti or life energies.
Pranayama practice is first described in Hindu texts like the Bhagavad Gita (श्रीमद्भगवद्गीता, dated to the second half of the first millennium BCE) and the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali.
Yoga Nidra is also called yogic sleep and is a yoga practice that aims at bringing the practitioner into a state of consciousness between waking and sleeping, often induced by a guided meditation or even mild hypnosis (which I have learned and practice to help people relax and overcome the symptoms associated to stress and trauma).
This practice is so effective that is used by the US Army to assist soldiers to recover from PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder).
Yin Yoga is a slow-paced practice of yoga that incorporates many principles of TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) and Hatha Yoga.
In this practice, the different asanas (postures) are held for periods of time that are longer than in other styles. Advanced practitioners may keep the asanas for five minutes or more.
The different asanas are stimulated in sequences that stimulate the Qi Meridians of Chinese Medicine and the Nadis in Hatha Yoga. It is one of the most meditative approaches to yoga, and the goals of its practice are to grow awareness of inner silence and to bring the practitioner into an enlightened, interconnected status.
From what you see, there are a lot of concepts we use in our MMQG practice, and that’s the reason why I will start teaching MMQG with these new features in July 2022.