Power flow yoga is a dynamic and vigorous form of vinyasa yoga that links poses together using the breath to create a continuous flow. This style of yoga is perfect for those looking for a more strenuous workout and provides many benefits, such as increased strength, flexibility, and energy.
Power flow may be perfect if you're looking for an invigorating and challenging yoga class. In this type of class, you'll move from one pose to the next without stopping, creating a fluid sequence that will test your strength, flexibility, and stamina.
What is Power Flow Yoga?
Power flow yoga is a type of yoga that includes increased intensity and emphasizes linking poses and breaths together in a continuous flow. This style of yoga is perfect for those looking for a more strenuous workout, as it requires significant strength and stamina.
Power flow can be taught or practiced at any level while increasing intensity by changing speed, sequence, temperature, posture accessibility, posture duration, and intensity of posture by accessing large muscle groups. Power flow classes often incorporate inversions and arm balances, which can help build strength and improve your balance.
What are the Benefits of Power Flow Yoga
Some of the benefits of Power flow Vinyasa yoga include:
- Improving strength and stamina by using large muscle groups and increasing cardiovascular intensity with postures and movements that increase your heart and breathing rates.
- Entering the zone, also known as the flow state, where your brain waves shift, your conscious mind quiets, and your subconscious mind becomes focused and engrossed in the experience.
- Improved gross and fine motor skills
- Improved balance, which prevents falls or injury
- Improved joint movement, stability, and mobility
- Improves circulation, which is essential for providing nutrients, hormones, and oxygen to tissues, muscles, and organs throughout your body.
- Aides in recovery due to circulation benefits
- Reduces stress by shifting brain waves and hormones
- Improves sleep-wake cycles by providing an opportunity to rest and digest, and shift hormones
Classes with heat have the added benefit of aiding in heat acclimatization. Heat acclimatization is improving the ability to function in heat that comes from increasing the duration or intensity of work performed in heat.
If you are new to yoga or looking for a more challenging practice, then power vinyasa yoga might be for you. Remember to listen to your body and mind, and take breaks when needed.
What to Expect in a Power Flow Class
Most Vinyasa Flow yoga classes have a format. Power flow may have a shorter or more intense warm-up and a longer peak flow portion. Power flow yoga usually increases in intensity during class, and there are many ways to do this.
Power or intensity will go up by increasing any of the following during a yoga class
- Duration of holding the pose
- Flow or movement speed
- The sequence of poses, stringing challenging postures together
- Temperature of room
- Posture accessibility or level of difficulty
- Accessing large muscle groups
- Duration of class
Power flow classes may stay at beginner-level accessible postures, but the cardiovascular intensity may increase, which can still be considered power flow vinyasa.
How to Prepare for a Power Flow Class
Find a studio near you
Many studios have an introductory special for new members. You can typically try a few classes out for a minimal cost.
For your first class, bring water, a yoga mat, a beach towel, or a yoga towel.
The towel should be large enough to cover your yoga mat. Most studios have these items for sale and mats and towels to rent.
Wear clothing that is dry wicking and comfortable
Be prepared to sweat. Power flow yoga classes increase your blood circulation and endurance. It's recommended to purchase yoga-specific or athletic clothing beforehand for class.
Book online if your studio offers it and arrive early to class.
Many studios have a guided tour and information to help you feel comfortable for your first class. Arriving last minute may take away from your experience. Call your studio to find out if there's an app or online portal they have to allow members to book classes.
Avoid a heavy meal or drinking lots of water before class
Avoid eating a heavy meal or drinking too much water the hour before class. Additionally, if you've started a new medication or are getting ready to, consult with your doctor to determine if it's safe to take before exercising in a heated room.
During class, keep an open mind. Be prepared to try new things.
This is your yoga practice, so make it what you want it to be. The teacher is there to guide you, but ultimately you should feel free to modify any posture or take a break as you need.
Listen to your body
Feel free to back off a pose if needed. Always move in a way that works for your body. Teachers will provide cueing and pose options, but remember that each person is different, and no single cue can encompass an entire class.
How Does Power Yoga Compare to Other Styles Of Yoga?
Power yoga vs. Ashtanga Yoga
Power yoga is an ever-changing flow with no two classes alike, and Ashtanga yoga is a set series of postures called asanas.
Power yoga vs. Restorative Yoga
Power yoga is vigorous and flows between yoga postures which may not be held very long, and Restorative yoga is relaxing into one posture at a time for a longer duration while using props such as blocks or bolsters (large pillows) to raise the floor up to the practitioner and support them into a restful posture.
Power yoga vs. Gentle Flow
Power flow and Gentle flow can both be taught or practiced at any level. Power flow increases intensity and accessibility, and Gentle flow decreases intensity and accessibility by changing speed, sequence, temperature, posture accessibility, posture duration, and intensity of the posture by accessing large or smaller muscle groups.
Power yoga vs. Bikram yoga
Power yoga is vigorous and flows between yoga postures linking movement to breathing, and each class may have unique cueing depending on the teacher.
In power yoga, postures may not be held very long due to moving in and out of them in a flow. Bikram yoga is a set series of one posture at a time, holding in stillness while breathing normally for a longer duration, during which each pose has a specific set of instructions. Originally Bikram yoga was always 90 minutes, and now you may find 60 min classes.
What is the difference between yoga flow and power yoga?
Power flow yoga is a type of vinyasa yoga that includes high intensity and emphasizes linking poses and breathing together in a continuous flow. Yoga flow is a type of vinyasa yoga that includes low to medium intensity and emphasizes linking poses and breathing together in a constant flow.
What type of yoga is power flow?
Power flow is usually high-intensity vinyasa yoga. Vinyasa yoga sequences yoga postures together seamlessly linked by breath and movement.
Can beginners do power flow yoga?
Absolutely! Power flow classes may stay at beginner-level accessible postures, but the cardiovascular intensity may increase, which can still be considered power flow vinyasa. Be sure to ask the studio or read the fine print if the class is labeled beginner friendly.