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 Post subject: Anyone do Kundalini yoga?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 07, 2010 4:13 pm 
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My job requires me to get more than the average amount of exercise, so my Dr. suggested Kundalini yoga as way for me to deal with stress without further taxing my body. Does any practice this that can tell me more about it?


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 Post subject: Re: Anyone do Kundalini yoga?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 07, 2010 6:00 pm 
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I have a DVD and tried it a few times. It felt like a active meditation for me.

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 Post subject: Re: Anyone do Kundalini yoga?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 07, 2010 7:30 pm 
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Did it once when a class that was supposed to be a core focused exercise type yoga was suddenly turned into a kundalini class (the regular instructor was sick and had somebody fill in for her at the last minute)

It was very different than the yoga I'm used to. The kundalini class consisted of different breathing techniques and a lot of chanting. I wasn't really sure what I was doing though, since I was just thrown into it.

I'm much more of a vinyasa and bikram yoga person now, so kundalini wasn't really for me. I find bikram to be a great stress relief and a more healing workout for my body than vinyasa, but it is active, not to mention really hot.

If you are looking more for pure stress relief without any movement attached, you could also look into guided meditation.


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 Post subject: Re: Anyone do Kundalini yoga?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 07, 2010 8:03 pm 
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I first tried it with videos by Ana & Ravi and I liked their videos a lot because they were physical but had a lot of relaxation in between sets. They also explain why you are doing everything you are doing which I like. I also learned a lot of meditation/stress reducing techniques that are really helpful for me. A lot of people think it is kind of crazy because there is chanting and talk of chakras and stuff like that so if you can't get past that definitely don't try Kundalini! Here is a clip from a video in case you are interested to see what the videos are like http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UU7C2OFazz0

I have taken live classes too but I didn't like them as much because a lot of it is really hard but not in a workout way. There is a lot of sitting with your arms straight up over your head and chanting and I am not a fan of that. But, I did find that learning the chants and doing them on my own is really calming if my mind is buzzing.

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 Post subject: Re: Anyone do Kundalini yoga?
PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 11:46 am 
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LazySmurf wrote:
I have taken live classes too but I didn't like them as much because a lot of it is really hard but not in a workout way. There is a lot of sitting with your arms straight up over your head and chanting and I am not a fan of that. But, I did find that learning the chants and doing them on my own is really calming if my mind is buzzing.

Yeah, this is true.

I wouldn't say Kundalini isn't physical, it can be very physically challenging but as LazySmurf says in a different way than other yogas. I find Kundalini builds the will and teaches you to move beyond physical discomfort and use meditation as a focus to get through difficult things--hence exercises like keeping your arms in the air for a long time while chanting or doing a specific breathing pattern--it's training you to switch to a strong mental focus and move beyond exterior discomforts and stay on course. In the broader picture, I believe this sort of training can be applied to life and I think that's one of the philosophies behind it, or at least that's part of my understanding of that one facet of it.

I've been practicing it on and off since 2002 and I think if I had to pick one yoga to practice forever, Kundalini would be it. I really like Ashtanga and vinyasa yogas too though. But yeah, Kundalinia is not for everyone, there is talk of chakras and stuff and some chanting. Our instructor more or less explains briefly what the exercise cycle we'll be doing that particular day will be working on, it's not a sermon or anything, just a brief talk about what Yogi Bhajan says these particular exercises will benefit.

I personally find Kundalini yoga to be very helpful and have found it to be a great stress reliever that does indeed build the will, helps me stay calm and enhances focus. I also find the meditation and corpse pose period to be longer in Kundalini classes and I think that's excellent because meditatation is very beneficial and I have some trouble with it, but the extended period of relaxation after the physical part of Kundalini class helps me with that. Also, practicing Kundalini has helped me understand the benefits of meditation more than any other style I've tried and has given me better tools to work with to get me to that place.

Anyway, I'm definitely a fan but I think as a yoga style, it can be somewhat of an acquired taste. If I need to do something I think takes courage, I always try to do a Kundalini session the day before because maybe it's a placebo effect, but I really think it helps. <3

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 Post subject: Re: Anyone do Kundalini yoga?
PostPosted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 10:26 pm 
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I love Kundalini yoga. At first, I wasn't crazy about it because it was so different than the Westernized yoga that I was used to (because of what others have mentioned. . . the chanting, different pranayamas, holding poses for long periods of time, etc.), but I kept going because, at the time, it was the only yoga class that I could get to. It's grown on me over the past year or so, and now I really look forward to going to class.

I think Kundalini can be pretty physically intense sometimes, but sometimes not. It depends on what "set" of poses you do. Each "set" has different benefits, and some--like sets for the heart--include more cardio-type stuff, while others are a lot more gentle and involve more meditation. I feel like I usually get a decent "workout" from class, even if it's a more gentle set, because the warm-ups we do are fairly intense (like rapid spinal twists, shoulder shrugs, and spinal flexing; also, a series of sun salutations before beginning the actual practice).

The DVDs that Lazysmurf suggested sound really good, but try to get to a class if there are any near you. It may not be the type of yoga for you, but it's worth a try. I love my Kundalini yoga teacher and have learned so much from her.

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