Learn a bit more...

Yoga is an age old tradition that was founded in India and was later introduced to the rest of the world. Everyone is familiar with the "Asana" aspect of yoga, or simply the postures, but are unaware that Asana is only one of the 8 limbs of yoga!


For those interested in learning a bit more about the other "limbs" we have gathered some information that will help you along the way with your yoga practice! 


And of course, if you have any questions or would like to learn a bit more please feel free to talk to any of us here at Santosha, we're always excited to discuss our passion!



"Practice, and all is coming."- Sri. K. Pattabhi Jois


Ashtanga Sequence


Yoga, as defined by Patanjali in the Yoga Sutras, is comprised of eight limbs. The outer limbs (Yama, Niyama, Asana and Pranayama) are practiced over time with consistency and purpose. The Yama and Niyama limbs, although somewhat universal principles, have to be interpreted in relation to our own culture and our place in its society. 


The inner limbs (Pratyahara, Dharana, Dhyana and Samadhi) evolve naturally when the outer limbs are established correctly. 


**Pranayama is the practice of breathing, inhale (puraka), exhale (rechaka), and retention of breath. It is only learned after asana has created a strong and balanced body.


Ashtanga-8 limbs (astau-8 anga-limb)


Ashtanga Yoga is a set sequence that uses the union of the breath with movement to help bring stillness to the mind. The format of the practice always remains the same and as a student's practice develops the teacher gradually adds additional postures. The benefit of Ashtanga Yoga is that the postures become engrained in the memory and the practice then becomes your own. Although the postures are never changing, the body is continuously adapting and adjusting and we begin to find change within each posture. 


As is common with most yoga practices, Ashtanga yoga moves through postures in a Vinyasa style. visit Sri K Pattabhi Jois Ashtanga Institute website for an excellent description of the significance of this practice.

Outer Limbs (Bahiranga)

1. Yama

      ( how we relate to others)

2. Niyana 

      (how we relate to ourselves)

3. Asana 


4. Pranayama 

      (Controlling the Breath)

8 Limbs of Yoga

Click photo

to enlarge

Inner Limbs


5. Pratyahara

      (withdrawal from the senses)

6. Dharana


7. Dhyana 


8. Samadhi


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