Yoga Varishta (Issue 4) June 2022
“At the heart of each of us, whatever our imperfections, there exists a silent pulse of perfect rhythm, made up of wave forms and resonances, which is absolutely individual and unique, and yet which connects us to everything in the universe.”
— George Leonard, The Silent Pulse
Yoga — India’s ancient tradition — is a valuable gift to the world. It not only enhances our physical capabilities but is a powerful tool for social-emotional development. During both, private practice and a community yoga practice, we find opportunities to connect with the universe. On this International Yoga Day, we are all coming together to celebrate “Yoga for Humanity”.
This TIME ministry has designed special programs for the specially-abled, transgender folks, women, and children. The 8th edition of International Yoga Day will also witness an innovative program ‘Guardian Ring’ that will see the participation of enthusiasts, along with the sun’s movement, i.e. beginning from the east and marching towards the west. Let us all come together and bring our humanity today and every day for this opportunity to enhance our unique, individual selves. Let us all pledge today to incorporate yoga and its different forms into our every day to live an enhanced version of ourselves.
Yoga from a New Perspective — a peek into Aerial Yoga
As people across the world gear up to mark International Day of Yoga this year too, we will bring you along on a journey introducing you to the newest addition to Maruti Yoga Kendra — Anti-Gravity Yoga. Anti-Gravity Yoga also known as Aerial Yoga or suspension yoga is among the several modern methods applied to the ancient practice.
Has a lot to do with gravity — it helps straighten the spine and increases blood flow to the brain when hanging upside down.
Is astonishingly simple (with a good instructor of course)!
What Is Aerial Yoga?
Aerial yoga combines traditional asana (the physical postures of yoga) and yoga philosophies with the aerial arts. Silk fabrics and/or ropes are hung from above to aid practitioners in forming shapes. You can be fully supported by the silks — even lying down entirely, like in a hammock, or wrap the silks around particular body parts, keeping other parts on the floor. Hanging fully or suspending individual body parts is believed to create attraction and open your body more gently and intuitively than when you’re on the floor. The silks and ropes can also be helpful for balance. With the hammock or yoga swing hanging from the ceiling, about three feet off the ground, practitioners are able to feel supported in backbends and in inversions, like a downward-facing dog. These hammocks can hold up to 900 kilos so they are not only durable but also soft and flowy.
This is why this type of yoga practice is also called anti-gravity or suspension yoga because, for much of the session, you will be suspended off the ground by the hammock. For those with a solid yoga practice, aerial yoga provides a new take on the traditional yoga practice as well as assistance during more challenging postures to help improve alignment and flexibility. For beginners, it offers a level of support in each pose to help students learn and practice proper alignment as strength improves.
For decades the props and equipment used in yoga asana practice have been evolving from their humble beginnings. From simple “bricks” like the ones of stone first used by B.K.S. Iyengar, to walls that resemble a torture chamber with ropes and pulleys, the art of the prop can sometimes be more complicated than the asana that it is designed to enhance. Now throw anti-gravity yoga and aerial yoga into the mix, and you have a whole new approach to the experience of asana! These “slings” or “hammocks” that hang from the ceiling, suspend the practitioner in mid-air for what becomes an acrobatic approach to practicing yoga poses.
In addition to using the blocks, straps, blankets, and rope walls you may see at many studios, Iyengar would hang his students from the ceiling on yoga swings.
The original swings were not like the colorful silk hammocks we see today. They were often made solely of ropes and would be padded with yoga mats or blankets.
Antigravity yoga, as it was originally called, began to gain attraction in the late 1990s.
The yoga hammock — which is one long piece of fabric — and the style name “aerial yoga” started appearing around 2011.
Aerial yoga approaches asana from a playful point of view. Participants are encouraged to stay lighthearted while manipulating the laws of physics as they hang suspended in the air exploring backbends and inversions or wrapping up cocoon-like for a unique expression of savasana. The soft fabric hammock is utilized to change one’s dynamic relationship to the ground, allowing the participant to better understand their body and its relationship to physics. The effects of this experiment claim to make inversions more accessible by alleviating back and neck compression to align the spine and decompress the joints of the body.
A combination of the arts and athletics, aerial yoga offers several physical and psychological benefits. Some of these are:
Improved flexibility, stability, and balance. A 2019 study observed that aerial athletes have exceptional flexibility, balance, and strength (2Trusted Source).
Traction and joint decompression. Hanging upside down and inverting are said to decompress the joints, which can compress over time due to gravity and age.
Reduced risk factors for heart disease. While research on this style of yoga is limited, the most-cited study, conducted in 2016 by the American Council on Exercise (ACE), found a significant reduction in the risk factors associated with cardiovascular heart disease.
Low to moderate intensity. The same ACE-commissioned study found that 50 minutes of aerial yoga can burn upwards of 300 calories, making it a form of low to moderate-intensity exercise.
Improved mental health. A small study noted significant improvements in depression and stress levels when people practiced aerial arts for the love of movement. This seems to bode particularly well for aerial yoga, which applies yogic philosophies and is often less competitive and more accessible than a circus-based or formal acrobatics class.
Important points to be noted before you begin your practice:
Aerial yoga is not recommended for people who are pregnant or for whom hanging upside down is not medically advised.
This includes, but is not limited to, people with eye conditions such as cataracts or detached retina, as well as people with unregulated blood pressure.
Check with a healthcare professional before signing up for your first class.
At Maruthi Yoga, we integrate the format of traditional yoga classes to the swing with a combination of vinyasa-like floor exercises, modified sun salutes, and even savasana. There are countless options when it comes to the types of aerial yoga classes. There are those that focus on high-flying tricks and those that are slower and more meditative. And just like traditional yoga practices, here in aerial yoga we incorporate breath work, cool down like savasana as well as spirituality or chanting in the session.
— Veena Angadi
Yoga for COVID-19
— Gayathri Guruprasad
Linga Mudra and Sahaja Shanka Mudra
— Lakshmi V
— MYK Team
— MYK Team
— MYK Team
Om meditation is a symbolic meditation where one walks through Dharana (determination), dhyana (concentration), and samadhi (stillness). From Japa or one-word mantra chanting you go to Ajapa or complete silence. Om meditation is beginner-friendly and can be done using any symbol. In our version, we have used a picture of the Om Symbol.
— Gayathri Guruprasad
In the Ayurvedic concept, the division of the year is into six seasons namely Shishira, Vasanta, Grishma Varsha, Sharad, and Hemant is based on the movement of the sun into the northern and southern solstice positions which are called Adana Kala (Uttarayana) and Visharga Kala (Dakshinayana) consisting of six months in each side. It is Maruthi Yoga Kendra's goal to assist our readers in navigating the different seasons with ease. Our Ayurveda section in this issue will focus on solutions for the monsoon season.
During the Adana Kala period, the sun takes away the cooling qualities of the earth due to its scorching heat, and the strength of the creatures is diminished. In contrast, in Visharga Kala sun releases strength to the people by empowering the moon and the earth becomes cool due to the clouds, rain, and cold wind.
Ayurvedic regimen during monsoon
Ayurveda describes aggravation of Vata and accumulation of Pita in Varsha Ritu (Rainy/monsoon season). This is the major cause of various diseases occurring during the rainy season. The food and lifestyle should thus be such that they help in balancing Vata and Pitta.
Diet during monsoon
Water available in the reservoirs during monsoon is comparatively heavy to digest and the metabolism is sluggish during this period. An individual is likely to experience a loss of appetite. Hence following changes in diet and lifestyle are advisable during monsoon:
Consume light and fresh foods prepared from barley, rice, and wheat
Include cow’s ghee, lentils, green gram, rice, and wheat in your daily diet.
Consume small pieces of ginger with rock salt before every meal.
Use sour and salted soups of vegetables. Onion and other vegetables.
During cooler days due to heavy rains, sour, salty, and oily diets are preferred.
Drinking boiled and cooled water mixed with little honey is recommended.
The addition of ginger and green gram to the daily diet is beneficial.
Eating warm food and avoiding uncooked foods and salads is better.
Drinking excess fluids to prevent further slowing down of metabolism is advisable.
Avoidance of consuming stale food is beneficial.
Consumption of leafy vegetables needs to be avoided during monsoon.
Avoiding curds, red meat, and any foodstuff, which takes a longer time to digest is good during the monsoon. One may have buttermilk instead of curds.
Consumption of ‘Haritaki /Harad' (Terminalia chebula) with rock salt in the monsoon season is beneficial to health.
Lifestyle during monsoon
Consumption of a healthy diet alone may not provide desired results unless it is supported by a lifestyle beneficial for monsoon. Following are the tips for the important changes in the lifestyle during the rainy/monsoon season.
Avoiding sleep in the daytime is good as it hampers digestion and slows down the metabolism.
Overexertion and overexposure to the sun, especially in the afternoon, is required to be avoided.
Keep the surroundings dry and clean and do not allow water to get accumulated around.
Keep the body warm, to protect against any attack from viruses as and when body temperature goes down.
Avoid entering an air-conditioned room with wet hair and damp clothes.
Avoid walking in dirty/dampened water
Feet are required to be kept dry.
Avoid getting wet in the rain. However, if it happened, changing into dry clothes as soon as possible is essential in order to avoid exposure to infections, as immunity is naturally low during monsoon
Use of Fumigation disinfectants like loban and dry neem leaves for drying cloths and killing insects/bacteria is recommended.
— Lakshmi V, Anupama Y, Gayatri Guruprasad
Introducing the newest section of the e-magazine — the Podcast is our effort to connect the yoga community globally. We will share some of our favorite podcasts and our recordings in our issues. Our community is always open to discussing your thoughts so feel free to message us on Facebook, Instagram, or in our subscribed newsletter.
The first podcast we will be sharing is titled "200 Hours Killed Yoga", an episode of the Yoga is Dead podcast series by two incredible women — Tejal Patel and Jesal Parikh. They started the podcast series with the intention of jumpstarting critical conversations, elevating oppressed voices and perspectives, and exposing the problems felt by anyone who isn’t in the “in” crowd of the yoga industry. These conversations are especially important now with the rapid globalization and colonization of yoga.
Certified Yoga Teacher (YIC) from Maruthi Yoga Kendra
Certified Yoga Teacher (YIC) from
Maruthi Yoga Kendra
Classes and Workshops
All classes are held Monday to Friday at Indian Standard Time (IST). Practitioners around the world are welcome to join us. For more information on the classes and how to join, please feel free to contact us.
!!!FREE YOGA FOR 10 DAYS!!!
In addition to regular yoga classes, we conduct workshops on the weekend for — stress management, obesity, diabetes, hypertension, anxiety, depression, and back pain. Please feel free to contact us for further information.
What can you do with a Yoga Instructors Course (YIC) Certification?
B.Sc in Yoga
B.Sc in Yoga Education
M.Sc in Yoga
M.Sc in Yoga Education
Ph.D. in Yoga
Post Graduation Diploma in Yoga Therapy (PGDYT)
PGDYT Masters in Business Administration (MBA)
PGDYT for Doctors (PGDYTD)
Certification in Yoga
To speak with folks who have completed one or more of the aforementioned degrees or to explore a path that may work for you, please feel free to contact us.
About Yoga Varishta
In 2020, at the beginning of COVID-19, our Yoga Instructor Certificate (YIC) course of 300 hrs moved from in-person to online. During this time, we noticed a lack of resources so our team began gathering information and educating YIC participants. As the year went on, students became invested in researching their own resources and sharing them with their peers. A year later, we accumulated an abundance of knowledge and information and decided to share it with everyone to make it more accessible in the yoga community.
Our mission is to share the knowledge of yoga with our practitioners across the globe and overcome the current barriers through the use of technology.
Our magazine will be a tool to increase accessibility and visibility in the South Asian Yoga Community and make it available on a global platform to allow practitioners around the world to learn more about the roots and growth of Yoga.
Yoga Varishta has been created with the following values
Knowledge and Implementation of Knowledge
Creativity and Innovation
Confidence, Clarity, and Continuity
Honesty, Integrity & Service
Acceptance, Healing & Forgiveness
Optimism, Enthusiasm, & HappinessFrom the Editor
From the Editor
I hope the summer sunshine and monsoon rains have brought peace to you since we last met. Congratulations and Thank you to you, our reader! It has been one year since the first issue of Yoga Varishta and I am so happy you have been a part of our journey. The Maruthi Yoga Kendra team started this magazine with the hopes of being connected during the pandemic. Since that time, we have been through a lot and I hope you have found solitude and community in our space.
Through our magazine, we hope to share our treasure trove of knowledge, continue to learn more, and create an online community that loves yoga in the way we do. Stay tuned for more to come!
— Isha A