Hatha, Vinyasa, Bikram, Nidra… there are many, many forms of yoga to choose from. With so much to offer, it can be tricky to decide what style of yoga is right for you, especially if you’re practising from your own home and without the guidance of an expert yoga teacher.

In this blog, we’ll run through some popular yoga styles and highlight who they’re good for, why they’re good for at-home yoga practices, and where to go to begin.

 

1. Hatha yoga

Hatha yoga is one of the most popular styles of yoga in the western world. It’s a physical practice that uses a blend of pranayama (breathing), dyana (meditation) and asanas (poses). The goal? To invigorate the mind and body. 

Who it’s good for

Hatha yoga is a slower practice than most other modern styles, which makes it the perfect practice for beginners. With a focus on breathing and meditation, it’s the perfect way to understand how dynamic poses combine with controlled breathing and present-mindedness. And because it’s a slower practice, you have the time to understand how each pose works without being overwhelmed.

Why it’s good for yoga at home

Hatha yoga is a perfect way to begin practising yoga when an instructor isn’t present. Because it’s a slower practice, and because it focuses on breathing, Hatha practices are easy to follow along with even if you know nothing about yoga. Better yet, beginner classes avoid advanced poses that, if unguided or adapted, could cause injury.

Where to begin

There are a few good places to begin Hatha yoga. Check out: 

2. Vinyasa yoga

Vinyasa yoga is also known as ‘flow’ because it incorporates fluid transitions between poses. Like Hatha, a big part of this style is breathing control, and movements are synchronized to breathing, which help develop a present (and meditative) practice.

Who it’s good for

Vinyasa yoga is a faster practice than Hatha and it offers up more variety when it comes to poses. Given that it’s a ‘get up and go’ practice, this is the perfect style for those who want to get a good sweat on and increase their energy. 

Why it’s good for yoga at home

There are many online classes and courses that focus specifically on Vinyasa flow, and with the winter months around the corner, it’s a great way to get some cardio in without having to head outside into the cold and rain. Because this style of yoga is all about movement, space is an important asset to consider. Limbs will be moving far and wide, so make sure to relocate your glassware first.

Where to begin

For Vinyasa yoga practices, check these places out:

3. Iyengar yoga

Named after B.K.S. Iyengar, the founder of Iyengar yoga, this yoga style is a form of Hatha yoga that focuses on alignment and precision with each pose. The practice relies heavily on props like blocks, straps and chairs, and integrates Ashtanga principles.

Who it’s good for

Iyengar yoga is perfect for those looking to level up their yoga practice and focus on technique and alignment. If you’ve been practising yoga for a while and you’re accustomed to popular styles like Hatha and Vinyasa, we suggest giving Iyengar a go.

Why it’s good for yoga at home

In a class setting, this is a great style of yoga for beginners because it’s a style of yoga that focuses on proper alignment. However, at home and without guidance, this practice is best for intermediate and advanced yogis who are looking for a new challenge.

Where to begin

There are some great Iyengar-specific practices online, including:

4. Restorative

If you’d rather relax after a hard day than sweat it out, restorative yoga is probably the best style for you. This practice focuses on healing the mind and body and incorporates simple (and often floor-only) poses that are held for a long time. The aim here is to focus on breathing, stretch deeply and remain present minded.

Who it’s good for

If you’re feeling anxious or stressed (especially about things like COVID-19), this is the perfect style of yoga for you. A daily restorative yoga practice is the best way to get some quality time in with yourself and switch off the day’s hardships. Try this practice as a way to runway down into sleep.

Why it’s good for yoga at home

Restorative yoga isn’t as demanding as many other practices, so you don’t need much prior experience or a lot of space to practice it. Instead, it’s about meditation and relaxation, which are two things best focused on at home anyway.

Where to begin

Explore these restorative yoga classes:

5. Ashtanga

Ashtanga yoga is a popular style to practice at home. It incorporates a Vinyasa-style practice, but uses only six-pose sequences at a fast pace. It also focuses on pairing breathing with poses to help you better connect with yourself. 

Who it’s good for

This is a fast-flowing yoga style, so at pace, it’s best suited for those who have a foundational understanding of the various poses. But, it can equally be performed at a slower pace, which makes it more accessible for beginners. This is a methodical yoga style, so those who enjoy moving quickly but repeating a flow, this is for you.

Why it’s good for yoga at home

Given that ashtanga yoga only incorporates six-pose sequences, this is perfect for those who may have limited knowledge of a lot of yoga poses and who instead want to build up experience practising the basics. Find a flow with poses you know and follow an ashtanga practice to build a deep understanding of how they work.

Where to begin

Explore these ashtanga yoga classes:


There are many other styles you can practice at home

These foundational yoga styles are just the tip of the iceberg; there are many other yoga styles you can practice from the comfort of your own home. We shared these five styles because they work great for all levels of experience, but if you’re looking to try a lesser known practice, consider exploring:

How to decide which style of yoga is right for your home practice