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Gentle Yoga vs. Restorative Yoga


Both gentle yoga and restorative yoga allow you to de-stress and gently relax into the posture. The differences between both these styles are that there’s more movement in gentle yoga, and postures are held longer in restorative yoga.


The asanas (postures) in gentle yoga come from hatha yoga but are done very gently and slowly. The slow, steady movements allow you to make modifications in the postures and to listen to your body as you flow with the breath. The gentle, rhythmic motion also enhances joint mobility and massages the internal organs. There’s an increase in circulation and energy, and the nervous system calms down.


The asanas (postures) in restorative yoga are deeply rejuvenating. Geeta Iyengar (daughter of B.K.S. Iyengar) is credited with creating restorative yoga. Geeta found that many people weren’t able to practice so-called “traditional” yoga due to illness, injuries, or other physical limitations. She began using props such as blankets, blocks, the wall, a chair, or anything else she could find to support the body. This developed into a form of yoga that supports the body in postures that are held for several minutes, allowing the body to melt into relaxation.


Props You’ll Need:

· 1 yoga mat

· 1 or more rectangular bolster

· 3 or more Mexican blankets

· 1 yoga strap

· 1 or more yoga blocks (optional)

· 1 eye pillow


Now you can substitute common household items for these props, so that you don’t have to go out and buy anything. Use a bathrobe belt for a yoga strap, a chair or sofa cushion for the bolster, a pillowcase for the eye pillow, household towels or blankets of the same size in place of the Mexican blankets, or a few throw pillows for the blankets.


I combine both these yoga styles to help you de-stress, and to gently and slowly move into the asanas for maximum benefit. My “Gentle and Restorative Yoga” classes are ideal for anyone with an injury, illness, or limited mobility.

Group classes are donation-based, so pay what you can. I take both Venmo and Paypal. We meet Monday evenings at 5:30 am MT (-1 hr for west coast, +1 hr for central time and +2 hrs for eastern time) on Zoom. Go to jlovehealth.com to sign up for a class. Hope to see you there.


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