Yoga pose types – What is what?

Hello! Here is a quick but handy post to understand the different yoga position categories. There are so many asanas that it can get a bit confusing when you start practisting, so the following links to the Yoga Journal website come in very handy.

Use them to work on the areas you are more interested in, and enjoy your yoga journey!

Arm Balances – Quite advanced but good for arm and core strength, and looking cool on Instagram! Beginners can start with planks and Dolphin poses to build strength.

Binding – Great to start your practise with, and for beginners. Relaxes your back muscles and give you a good stretch! These are good postures to realise of your flexibility improvement as weeks pass by.

Chest Openers – Specially good if you are feeling nervous, as these asanas will open you chest and heart, and improve your breathing. Good for all levels, but be aware of your neck when doing asanas such as Camel or Fish, keep your head straight if it feels dizzy to bend it back (it happens to me every time).

Forward Bends – One of my favourites… Great for flexibility and for relaxing at the same time. These are perfect to practise at the end of the day, especially if you spent most of it sitting on a chair! All levels will enjoy them and you hamstrings will notice them 😉

Hip Openers – Similar to forward bends, hip openers allow you to stretch and relax at the same time. Amazing poses such as Pigeon and Lizard are not featured in the link, so here you go, do not miss them (but don’t over do it, or your knees will suffer the consequences…)


Seated – Seated poses are the best. Perfect for a lazy day, to warm up your practise or for beginners. They will give you a soft yet good stretch, and help you relax and find some inner peace. Remember, it is not just about the body. Link them to breathing exercises and you will be a new person at the end of it.

Standing – Many of these postures are the ones we relate to yoga. Warrior One, Two, Three, Extended Side Angle, Downward Facing Dog, Eagle pose… There are so many and so beneficial that you should ensure you try them all, you core will thank you!

Twists – Similar to Binding postures, Twists will crack you back and release tension. Likewise, these asanas help you massage internal organs aka wanting to visit the bathroom at the end of the practise. How wants to eat kiwis when you can to Twists?!

Backbends – The golden child of yoga. These are the postures that get the most love and probably yes, the ones that look the prettiest, especially on Instagram! I recommend you to visit Talia Sutra’s page to amaze yourself with what a flexible back can do. Instagram yoga aside, backbends are a great source of strength and flexibility training at the same time. Do the wheel for ten seconds and you will end you breathing as if you ran for 50 meters.

For beginners, Bridge pose is the best start back-bending. Increase your level gradually and only when you back allows you too. There is no rush, it will happen if you keep practising.

Inversions – If backbend is the golden child, Inversions might be golden mama! Who cool and impressive are them? And how difficult? The truth is that you can start slowly and evolve. Handstands aside, which require much strength and practise; beginners can start with asanas such as Dolphin pose, and start working on core strength that way.

Headstands require practise but are achievable. My tip is to start with Tripod (below), then move to a Headstand once your core gets used to the balance required.


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