In the hectic western life, 2 hours of daily Hatha Yoga practice should be done to get most benefits. There are two stages – energizing and deconditioning. You need energy for deconditioning and living with clarity. The upside down poses are energizers. When you have taken tensions away, you decondition and then recharge yourself with Hanging Sirsasana and Shoulderstand.
Do standing poses every day, every second day backbends or twist and forwardbends.
Give pranayama at least half an hour and always do Viparitakarni before that. Pranayama shouldn’t be done immediately after asanas with the exception of Viparitakarani.
You cannot do pranayama without asanas. The other way around is possible. Hatha Yoga texts say that asana is absolutely essential – it is the first practice.
Himalayan Iyengar Yoga Centre
Yoga master teacher Sharat Arora
Article derived from the Intensive Yoga Course at the
Himalayan Iyengar Yoga Centre in Arambol, North Goa, 2000