Modernized Yoga Poses for Exercise

January 24, 2012

Unlocking Word Meanings
Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

1. modern (adj.) 
[mod-ern] – relating to a well-developed or advanced form or style
Example: The mobile phone is the modern form of the telephone.

2. dynamic (adj.) [dahy-nam-ik] – having or showing continuous change
Example:   Every economy experiences the dynamic rise and fall of market prices

3. in harmony (idiom) [in hahr-muh-nee] – in agreement or in combination with other parts or elements
Example: The dancer performed in harmony with the music.

4. meditation (n.) [med-i-tey-shuhn] – the act of thinking deeply and quietly, usually for a spiritual purpose
Example: Every night, he undergoes meditation and thinks about what he has experienced in the day.

5. modify (v.)  [mod-uh-fahy] – to change
Example: The game’s difficulty was modified so young children could play it.

Read the text below.

Power yoga, a modern form of yoga, has grown in popularity as a form of exercise because of the dynamic flow of its poses.

This kind of yoga became more accessible to people in the West by the start of the 21st century, and has since been taught and practiced in gyms in many countries.

Originally, yoga was done for spiritual gain, but today, people are mainly interested in doing power yoga for exercise because of its Vinyasa- styled poses. These Vinyasa or “breath-matching” poses are focused on improving strength and flexibility, and are always performed in harmony with one’s breathing.

For example, in the Cat-Cow Stretch, the Cat pose is made upon inhaling, and the Cow pose upon exhaling.

A more complicated series of poses is the Sun Salutation. There are several connected movements in the Sun Salutation, three of which are the Plank, the Four-Limbed Staff Pose and the Upward Facing Dog. The first pose, the Plank, strengthens the arms and the spine. Next is the Four-limbed Staff Pose, or Chaturanga Dandasana, a pose similar to a push-up, which is used to strengthen the arms, wrists and abdomen. Finally, the Upward Facing Dog involves a backbend, which promotes flexibility of the spine.

Although the poses in power yoga change from teacher to teacher, it is important that the yoga is started with 3 to 6 sets of Sun Salutations, and ends with at least 5-minute Savasana or meditation.

Many people whose bodies are already in good condition try power yoga as a challenge. However, the exercises in this form of yoga can be modified according to a person’s fitness level, and can be enjoyed by anyone looking for a good way to exercise.

Viewpoint Discussion
Enjoy a discussion with your tutor. 

Discussion A

·         Would you consider trying power yoga exercises? Why or why not?
·         Can you think of other exercises similar to power yoga?

Discussion B

·         Is exercise alone enough to stay healthy? Why or why not?
·         What kinds of exercises do you do in order to keep yourself healthy?


January 24, 2012