By John Scott
John Scott is the yoga teacher who helped Madonna sculpt her body to its high level of fitness and toned physique. He is also personal yoga teacher to Sting and Trudi Styler. With this book, Scott introduces the principles of ashtanga yoga to a wider audience. Ashtanga is one of the more dynamic forms of yoga, as powerful an exercise as doing an aerobic class. However, the benefits go far deeper than a fitter body. Ashtanga yoga is a movement meditation, where the breath is the key to focusing the mind, balancing the emotions and strengthening the spirit, while toning the muscles and building stamina. Yoga is also a philosophy and discipline for developing patience, inner strength and heightened concentration. Ashtanga literally means "eight stages" - abstinence, observance, posture, breath control, sense withdrawal, concentration, meditation and contemplation. The book's sequence of practice sessions provides the foundations which should allow the practitioner to achieve his or her physical and psychological peak. It starts with a simple sequence for beginners, moving on to breath-synchronized "asanas" that massage inner organs to purify the body.The structured course develops the strength, stamina and flexibility, which should provide progressively deeper therapeutic benefits.
Ashtanga Yoga for Women
By Sally Griffyn, Michaela Clarke
Ashtanga is a dynamic form of yoga that involves a combination of stretch, strength and endurance. Traditionally, ashtanga has been the preserve of men and, until recently, practiced only in India. This situation is changing, however. More and more women are finding that ashtanga has a lot to offer them in terms of an energizing and empowering experience on physical, spiritual and emotional levels. Ashtanga is experienced by each individual in a different way. Although the sequence of postures remains the same, those who practice them meet intensely different challenges. Women who are larger or smaller, who have given birth or not, who are older or younger will all have different experiences of the sequence, but the experiences will always be life-enhancing. With clear photography of the primary series of poses, background information and interviews with yoga practitioners, this text shows how practice of this form of yoga is suitable for everyone.