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Yoga Terms For Beginners: A Basic Approach

Do you feel like in foreign lands in a yoga class? That might be because of the vocabulary or yoga terms used in a yoga class. Although it is not at all mandatory to cram all the yoga terms however, knowing yoga terms will help you in the long run. Hence, learning yoga jargon or Sanskrit words has become important to make the most of your yoga practice.

Basic Yoga Terms For Beginners

Here are some yoga terms for beginners you should be aware of. Yoga terms in hindi wordic Read on.

1. Asana

The physical yoga poses are what you call as the ‘asanas’. Every possible yoga pose has a Sanskrit name that ends with asana. Hence, it denotes the physical stances or postures done in various flows or intensities. In case you want to have an in-depth analysis of various yoga poses, you can always join a yoga course. Going through 200 hour yoga teacher training syllabus gives you a better insight into the matter.

2. Abhyasa

The daily practice of the yoga asanas are what you refer to as Abhyasa. Furthermore, a focused approach to yoga ensures you undergo a perfect practice session.

3. Ahimsa

The practice of non-violence you find in the moral codes of Yoga Sutras is what you call as Ahimsa. It considers not just killing but also not harming living beings under any circumstances. Furthermore, Ahimsa comes at the top in the category of Yamas. Ahimsa also preaches not eating animal products.

4. Ashtanga

It simply means ‘Eight Limbs’. In the context of yoga, Ashtanga refers to the ‘8 Limbs of Yoga’. Sage Patanjali wrote about these in the Yoga Sutras. Each of the eight limbs cover the eight dimensions or phases of life for practitioners seeking samadhi or enlightenment.

The eight limbs of yoga associate with different practices in life that help you experience spiritual awakening. It is one of the yoga terms for beginners that you would hear from yoga gurus.

5. Bandha

Bandhas are locks, seals, or knots in your body that restrict the flow of energy or prana. To unlock these knots, you have to contract a certain muscle. Furthermore, Hatha yoga practitioners usually practice Bandhas to have optimum muscle control and health.

The three primary Bandhas are Root Lock (Mula Bandha), Navel Lock (Uddhiyana Bandha), and Throat Lock (Jalandhara Bandha).

6. Chakra

Chakra are the energy points or energy centers in your subtle body. These swirl in motion and contain energy and light. Each chakra has a specific color, emotion , or element.

Every yoga chakra has a link to the another in an upward motion. The energy flows from the lowest chakra in the body to the highest present chakra. Once you activate all chakras, the Kundalini Shakti awakens.

7. Dhyana

You practice Dhyana in the form of meditation in yoga. It consists of sitting comfortably with eyes closed (mostly) and focusing on your mind. Yoga masters use Dhyana and meditation interchangeably that might confuse you. Hence, just keep in mind that Dhyana practice relates to calming your mind.

8. Japa

Reciting Sanskrit mantras comes under the category of Japa. However, it depends on your personal preference whether you practice Japa aloud or deep within. Japa is commonly used in mantra meditation or mantra recitation.

Also, various mantras are recited while saying affirmations throughout the yoga practice.

9. Namaste

Namaste is a form of salutation which you say either at the beginning or at the end of a yoga session. You fold both hands in front of your body just like you do when praying. Further, to show a more humble attitude, a person can bend a little while saying Namaste to the other person.

It is pronounced as ‘Nah-mah-stay’. This practice is there to give birth to compassion, humility, or down to earth attitude.

10. Om (Aum)

It is a universal sound that unites various dimensions in a single place. Om is one of the most common mantras recited in every yoga session. Moreover, it is used as a common prefix to various Sanskrit yoga mantras.

11. Mantra

It includes sacred Sanskrit words or sounds. Mantras have transformational effects on your mind and body. Furthermore, mantras are recited while doing yajnas or meditation.

12. Niyama

Niyama comes in second place in Patanjali’s Eight Limbs of Yoga. Niyamas have further five categories that imply what you should practice in your daily life. The five Niyamas are Saucha, Samtosha, Tapas, Svadhyaya & Ishvara Pranidhana.

13. Prana

The energy force flowing within your body is called prana. It is vital to do everyday tasks without any hassle. Moreover, prana energy ensures you remain in the best mental and physical shape.


The above-given are just a few yoga terms for beginners you should know about. You can join a 300 hour yoga teacher training in India to have deep knowledge about all these terms. Once you dive deeper, you learn much more. Knowing these terms make your yoga practice easier and successful.


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Written by Dr. Ozair (CEO of SignSymptom.com) as physician writers are physicians who write creatively in fields outside their practice of medicine.

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