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What is Yoga?
A system of exercises that help you control your mind and body in order to relax is called Yoga. Yoga originated from India few thousand years back. In the early stage only the Yogis started practicing Yoga Positions so these positions are named after those Yogis as Yoga. Yogi means hermit.

What is Hatha Yoga?
Hatha Yoga is called Power Yoga, which includes postures and breathing. Power Yoga is very popular in the Western countries. Power Yoga is a part of Raja Yoga. In Power Yoga there are few styles known as Iyengar Yoga, Astanga Yoga, Bikhram Yoga, and Integral Yoga etc. These Yoga teach the lessons from Patanjali's Yoga Sutras.

Will practicing Yoga help me lose weight?
If you keep practicing Yoga regularly, you will not look your age. Yoga will make you look younger and feel better. Yoga will help you slim down in two ideal ways. First, the exercises will help you burn calories. In addition, they'll help tone your muscles and improve of your posture.

Yoga is also about healthy living, which includes a healthy diet. It doesn't mean that you need to be a vegetarian. Non-vegetarian food is not formidable. Fresh fruits and vegetables, grains, etc. are good for your health and this practice will control your intake of fast food, oily snacks and fatty food. Power Yoga is the only Yoga, which will help you lose weight in due course. But you should keep practicing Hatha Yoga every morning at least for 30 minutes minimum. Books, videos and website can be a good source of help to start practicing Hatha Yoga. It makes no difference between Hatha Yoga and Power Yoga.

Can Yoga get rid of chronic diseases?
Hatha Yoga only can get rid of chronic diseases if one keeps practicing the Power yoga systematically. For example, if you keep practicing pranayama it will get rid of tuberculosis. If you keep practicing Lotus Position, it will get rid of any chronic stomach pain in due course. Sarvangasana - Shoulder Stand will get rid of number of diseases.

What is the difference between Yoga & normal exercises?
Traditional exercise is normal exercise, which does not control one's mind. But Yoga, by contrast, controls your body and mind simultaneously. The idea is to focus your awareness on what you are doing and how you feel as you perform the Yoga Positions.

In normal exercise, you will fail if you miss your goal. In Yoga, you are sure to succeed when you keep trying. There's also a difference on the physical level. Weight Lifting exercise, for example, makes you stronger by breaking down and rebuilding muscle tissue. As a result you will gain bulky muscle look. Yoga increases strength by toning the muscles.

How many types of Yoga are there?
There are four paths of Yoga:
  1. Gnana Yoga teaches the path of knowledge or wisdom
  2. Bhakthi Yoga teaches the path of devotion towards God
  3. Karma Yoga teaches the path of action; and
  4. Raja Yoga teaches the path of self-control.

What is the ideal time to practice Yoga?
Early morning is the ideal time to practice Power Yoga. Especially your stomach should be empty. No one should practice Yoga after having meals. Your bowel should also be supposed to be empty. So early morning is the ideal time as most of us use to make bowel movement in order to excrete our human waste. One should make him or her clean before practicing Yoga. It's highly advisable to have bath before and after practicing Yoga.

Can a pregnant woman practice Yoga?
Pregnant woman can practice Yoga if she was a Yoga Aspirant before marriage. Pregnant woman should not do any forward bend at all. Beginner should not practice any Yoga Position while she is in the family way. Avoid compressing the belly and abdomen totally.

Should women abstain from doing Yoga during menstruation?
It depends up on the individual. One can decide if or not to practice during this period. Some ladies may not like to practice Yoga during menses and some may prefer to keep practicing without worrying about this period. Anyway it would be highly advisable to keep from practicing inverted Yoga Positions. Also it's advisable to take complete rest during this period for ladies who are suffering from irregular menses period.

What type of food is advisable to a Yoga Aspirant, vegetarian or non-vegetarian?
In fact vegetarian food is good for Yoga Aspirants; but it's not compulsory. You can have non-vegetarian food if you like. But it's compulsory that one should give up smoking before practicing Hatha Yoga Positions.

It will have very good effect on you if you keep yourself from drinking coffee and/or tea. Alcoholic drink is permissible if consumed moderately on health grounds.

Can you please mention the names of the diseases, which can be cured by practicing Hatha Yoga?
Hatha Yoga will help get rid of/help reduce the severity of diseases like Asthma, Allergy, Arthritis, Back pain, digestive issues, Hypertension, menstrual irregularity, mental disorders and sleeplessness and a lot more diseases.

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