Ashtanga yoga makes you healthy and agile

During my first trip to Thailand I came into contact with Ashtanga Vinyasa yoga. I had never done yoga before and I can tell you that this was a baptism of fire. Ashtanga yoga is a rather dynamic form of yoga, which requires a lot from the body. But after getting on the mat every morning for two months in a row, I was hooked. I came home completely detoxed – mentally and physically cleaned – healthy and agile.

Primary series

With Ashtanga yoga you start with the so-called primary series. This is a series of asanas. Asanas are poses that you do in a fixed order using Ujjayi-breathing. You may only continue with a next pose, if you can do the previous one correctly. That is how you slowly build towards more flexibility and strength, which you need for all asanas in the primary series. The asanas are built up in a special way to detoxify the different organs in your body and to strengthen your muscles.

Mysore style

The traditional way to practice this form of yoga is the Mysore style. This means that you have to be on the mat every morning at the same time, you practice the primary (or more) series at your own pace and a qualified teacher is walking around to help you. This is the way how Mysore is trained in India in the family house of the late Sri Krishna Pattabhi Jois, the yogi that has made this form of yoga famous in the West.


Many people know Ashtanga as a kind of power yoga. That is how it is often commercially offered in gyms. Ashtanga yoga is however, just like other forms of yoga, a way of life. The difficult Asanas are designed to make you strong and flexible, so you are able to be in meditation for hours. Which is the ultimate end goal. The Ashtanga Yoga School in Amsterdam offers the Mysore style. Click here for more information.

Would you like to make yourself stronger and more flexible; maybe try Ashtanga yoga!