Hatha yoga
Home  /  Yoga Vidya

What is Hatha yoga | History | Benefits | Poses | Hatha vs vinyasa

Hatha Yoga is a branch of yoga that focuses on physical postures (asanas), breathing techniques (pranayama), and meditation. It originated in India in the 15th century, although some of its practices can be traced back to ancient Vedic traditions.

One of the oldest yoga types in the world is – Hatha Yoga. It was practiced by yogis and sages in ancient times. But now gradually it became very popular among the people.

In this yoga, different types of asanas depend on the body, different types of Pranayama depend on Prana, And with the mixture of these two ( Body, Prana) different types of mudras, bandhas, and other activities are performed and meditation is also done simultaneously.

What is Hatha Yoga?

Hatha yoga is made up of two words Ha and Tha where Ha means Sun and Tha means Moon and the word yoga combines both. Hatha Yoga means to balance the Sun and Moon in your body. The state of simultaneous equilibrium of the Sun and Moon is called Hatha Yoga.

In other words, the yoga which is done forcefully, perforce, using all its power is called “Hatha Yoga“. The synonyms of Hatha are stubbornness.

It is a very powerful way of living in which such asanas or Yogasanas of yoga are used. By practicing this, one can change and enhance the way one think, feel, and experience life.

It is a scientific method that unifies the various branches of yoga and brings harmony in a person’s life. Regular practice of yoga helps in achieving good health and strength.

Hatha Yoga: History

This Yoga style is believed to be older by thousands of years. But there is no written fact that when it was being practiced for the first time, there was no transmission other than the spoken word.

Shaivism is the mainstream of Hatha Yoga practice. Yogi Matsyendranath, the founder of Hatha Yoga is associated with yogis of the Nath sect. And this is credited to Gorakhnath or Gorakshanath, a disciple of Matsyendranath. Apart from Shaivism, Buddhists also adopted the method of this Yoga.

According to some beliefs, This yoga was first performed by Lord Shiva. This style of yoga is considered to be the oldest mode of Indian Yoga and has been practiced by yogis of India for many centuries.

Hatha Yoga Benefits

Hatha Yoga has gained immense popularity in recent times. Many people know the benefits of yoga. This style of yoga gives you weight reduction, a strong and flexible body, enhances strength, flexibility, and balance, beautiful glowing skin, a peaceful mind, and good health – whatever you want. It Promotes not only physical but also mental health. by regular practice, You can get also the health benefits of hatha yoga.

Physical Health Benefits of Hatha Yoga

This style of yoga gives numerous physical health benefits.

Enhances Strength, Flexibility, and Balance

This style of yoga is a great way to Enhances Strength, Flexibility, and Balance. It works by stretching your muscles. They can help you move better and feel less stiff or tired. Improved flexibility is one of the first and most obvious benefits of hatha yoga.

Weight Loss

Hatha Yoga benefits for Weight loss– One of the main things about Hath Yoga is that it is an aerobic exercise that is done with moderate speed can prove to be very beneficial in weight loss. This does not only reduce the fat stored on the body but also makes the body flexible so that you stay healthy. For this see- best yoga for weight loss.

Beautiful Glowing Skin

People use a variety of products to enhance the glow of the skin. But there is some hatha yoga asana that can be used to increase skin glow or improves skin tone by regular practice. Yoga for glowing skinSarvangasana, Trikonasana, Dhanurasana, etc.

This style of yoga encourages proper blood circulation. This, in turn, improves the skin as it provides essential nutrients to the cells and flushes out toxins.

Pain Reduction

Over the years, many research and studies have proven that hatha yoga is quite effective when it comes to relieving pain. It combines breath control, meditation, and movements to stretch and strengthen muscles as well as helps relieve chronic pain. Apart from this, In case you are suffering from arthritis, migraine, fibromyalgia, yoga plays an effective role in reducing pain due to all these ailments. When it comes to people suffering from back pain and shoulder pain, this style of yoga has provided relief to millions of them.

Promote Overall Health

Good health is not only to stay away from diseases but to establish a balance between your mind and emotions. This style of yoga gives you complete health, it not only eliminates diseases but it makes you dynamic, happy and enthusiastic.

Mental Health Benefits of Hatha Yoga

Aside from the physical benefits, one of the best benefits of Hatha yoga is how it helps a person manage stress.

Stress Reliever

A number of studies have shown that Hatha yoga may help reduce stress and anxiety. It can also enhance your mood and overall sense of well-being. These types of yogic kriyas combine many techniques used to reduce stress.

Enhanced Mental Health

Hatha Yoga offers countless mental health benefits. It helps in attaining lower stress levels, helps in reducing hostility towards oneself and others. It controls anxiety and provides motivation.

Improves memory and concentration

Hand yoga and pranayama have a very important contribution to awaken and activate different parts of the body. Doing this not only enhances our intellectual power, but it also increases our concentration as well as a memory by solving many problems.

Inner peace

We all like to visit peaceful, beautiful and natural places. When we feel that this peace is inside us, we can experience this short holiday at some time during the day. This short holiday with hatha yoga and meditation is the best way to calm your anxiety-filled mind.

Connects the mind with spirituality

Hatha Yoga provides practical ways to control the body and mind. It focuses on experience, That is a physical, mental, and spiritual experiment to organize human life in a comfortable and natural environment.

It works by removing various disorders of the body and returning the lost mental peace and keeping the mind calm, increasing the resolving power and awakening the mysterious powers of the soul.

7 Best Hatha Yoga Poses for Beginners

Some people do not practice Hatha Yoga because they feel that this yoga is very difficult or they will not be able to do it. Some people start yoga with some Yoga Poses which are a bit difficult and provide difficulty in getting started, due to which they leave Yoga.

Today, we will tell you the best easy Poses for Yoga beginners as well as the health benefits available from them. So let’s know what are yoga postures for a great start.

1. Tadasana or Mountain Pose

When we talk about yoga poses Tadasana comes first in our mind. children or old people, everyone can do it, which is not disabled.

Tadasana is just that basic standing pose asana which is easy to perform and carries various health benefits.

How To Do Tadasana or Mountain Pose

  • First of all, stand straight with the help of your feet.
  • Make a little space between your two legs.
  • After that, with the help of fingers of your feet with a long breath, lift the body up a little and raise both your hands slowly. After that, connect the fingers of one hand with the fingers of one hand.
  • Look slightly in upward directions.
  • Stay in this posture for at least 10-40 seconds and pull your body upward.
  • After that, slowly bring your hands to the normal position.

Benefits of Tadasana or Mountain Pose

  • It increases Height. Also known as the Palm tree pose, is outstanding amongst other Yoga stances to build the tallness of developing kids.
  • Not only abdominal fat but also play a huge role in reducing excess body fat.
  • Tadasana yoga is very beneficial for foot problems like swelling, pain, numbness, burning sensation and tingling.

2. Uttanasana or Standing forward bend Yoga

Uttanasana is a Sanskrit word derived from the words Ut means intense, Tan means to stretch and extend and asana means posture.

How To Do Uttanasana or Standing forward bend Yoga

Uttanasana Yoga Standing forward bend posses Steps benefits
  • First of all, stand straight with the help of your feet. Take a deep inhalation, stretch your arms up toward the ceiling.
  • Exhale while bending forward slightly at a 90-degree angle, lengthening your torso.
  • Now bend your elbows down the ground and touch your feet with your hands.
  • After this bend your torso such that your torso and chest touch your thighs.
  • Hold this pose for 50-60 seconds.
  • Though practitioners can go up to 15 minutes for spiritual benefits.

Benefits of Uttanasana or Standing forward bend Yoga

  • Uttanasana strengthens your thighs and knees.
  • It helps in reducing headaches, fatigue, and insomnia.
  • It tones and activates the muscles of the abdomen.

3. Vrikshasana or Tree Yoga Pose

Vrikshasana is like a steady and graceful tree. It is termed after Sanskrit words Vriksha meaning tree and asana meaning pose. 

How To Do Vrikshasana or Tree Yoga Pose

  • First of all, keep both your hands beside and stand upright.
  • After that, carefully keep your right leg on the thigh of your left leg and stand straight.
  • After that, slowly join both hands and move upwards and pray.
  • Make sure that your spine is straight. Also, you need to keep the body taut as well as elastic.

Benefits of Vrikshasana or Tree Yoga Pose

  • Tree pose tones the muscles of the legs while making the tendons as well as ligaments of the feet stronger.
  • It makes the knees stronger and loosens the hip joints.
  • Therapeutic for sciatica.

4. Sukhasana or Easy Pose

We talk about the common seated pose in yoga for everyone Sukhasana holds no one positions.

How To Do Sukhasana or Easy Pose

  • Comfortably sit with the legs folded on the yoga mat to do the practice the easy pose. 
  • Feet bend in such a way that the lower part of one leg is seen outside and the other under the thighs of the next leg.
  • Makes sure your pelvis is neutral.
  • Place the palms of both your hands upon your knees and wear the Gyana Mudra.

Benefits of Sukhasana or Easy Pose

  • Sukhasana recommends in kids yoga sequences because it helps grow children’s height.
  • Sukhasana makes body posture perfect.
  • It improves the sense of mind.

5. Paschimottanasana Yoga (Seated Forward Bend)

In this yoga pose the upper body folded forward. It is a classic pose from Hatha yoga, that covers the stretching of the whole body from head to heels so it is called as Paschimottanasana.

How To Do Paschimottanasana Yoga Seated Forward Bend

Paschimottanasana Yoga Seated Forward Bend Steps Benefits
  • Sit with your legs spread out in front, keep the spine straight,
  • While breathing, raise both hands above the head and pull.
  • While exhaling, lean forward from the hips joint, towards the chin toes, keeping the spine straight, focus your attention on moving the claws instead of bending over the knees.
  • Keep your hands on the feet, wherever they reach.
  • Do for 30-60 seconds in the beginning. For health benefits 3 – 5 minutes every day is good enough.

Benefits of Paschimottanasana Yoga Seated Forward Bend

  • It also helps to reduce the stomach as well as dilute the waist.
  • Benefits of Paschimottanasana Yoga improves the flow of blood throughout the body, which brings sharpness on the face, removes weakness.

6. Balasana Yoga or Child Pose

Balasana is also called Garbhasana and Shashankasana. It promotes positive feelings, transporting you back to your childhood days and stripping you off ill feelings and arrogance.

How To Do Balasana Yoga or Child Pose

  • Sitting down on your heels and keep your hips on the heels or Vajrasana.
  • Now, lower your forehead to the floor while exhaling deeply.
  • Keep the arms alongside your body. Keep your hands overhead and palms facing up. Relax your elbows completely.
  • Make sure to bring your hands at the back alongside your thighs and the head touching the ground.
  • Holding this pose for about 1 to 2 minutes.

Benefits of Balasana Yoga or Child Pose

  • The benefits of Balassana relieves constipation.
  • It makes the body flexible as well as back muscles.
  • It increases blood circulation also.

7. Shavasana or Corpse Pose

Savasana practice end of yoga sessions to relax the whole body. In this yoga, the body postures the same as the corpse so this is also called corpse pose.

How To Do Shavasana or Corpse Pose

  • In Shavasan, the bus is to lie down. Lay a pedestal or mat and lie on your back.
  • Keep both hands at least 4-5 inches away from the body.
  • Keep a distance between both legs.
  • Place the palms towards the sky and leave the hands relaxed.
  • Leave the body loose.
  • Close your eyes. Now take a little breath.
  • Now focus all your attention on your breath.

Benefits of Shavasana or Corpse Pose

  • By doing Shavasana, the body is free from tension. As a result blood circulation starts flowing smoothly.
  • It improves sleep & cures insomnia.
  • To improve sex life, it is necessary to calm the brain. Shavasana releases new energy into the body. So do shavasan to improve sex life.

Hatha Flow Vs Vinyasa Flow

Now, we will discuss the differences between Hatha flow and Vinyasa flow or vinyasa yoga. Both styles are equally important to us. We cannot have the same practice every day.

Hatha Flow-

Hatha Flow is a slower-paced style of yoga that focuses on holding poses for longer periods of time, allowing for a deeper stretch and more mindful awareness of the body. In Hatha Flow, the emphasis is on the breath, and each pose is typically held for several breaths before moving on to the next one. Hatha Flow classes may also include some pranayama (breathing) exercises and meditation.

Vinyasa Flow –

Vinyasa Flow, on the other hand, is a more dynamic and fast-paced style of yoga that emphasizes linking breath with movement. In Vinyasa Flow, the poses are typically sequenced together in a flowing, continuous movement, with each movement coordinated with an inhale or exhale. Vinyasa Flow classes may also include some challenging poses and inversions and can be quite physically demanding.

Hatha Yoga VS Raja Yoga

Generally hath yoga represents physical exercise to generate energy in the body. raja yoga is 8 limbs of the yoga journey in this a yogi practices all limbs of yoga to get higher level results called spiritual liberation,

Hatha Yoga and Raja Yoga are both branches of yoga that have different approaches and goals.

Hatha Yoga is primarily concerned with the physical body and aims to prepare the body for meditation. It involves practicing asanas (physical postures), pranayama (breathing techniques), and other physical practices to purify and strengthen the body. The ultimate goal of Hatha Yoga is to achieve physical health and balance, as well as to prepare the body for deeper spiritual practices.

Raja Yoga, on the other hand, is concerned with the mind and aims to control the fluctuations of the mind in order to achieve spiritual liberation. Raja Yoga involves practices such as meditation, pranayama, and self-reflection to quiet the mind and gain mastery over the senses. The ultimate goal of Raja Yoga is to achieve self-realization and spiritual enlightenment.

While Hatha Yoga and Raja Yoga have different goals, they are not necessarily mutually exclusive. In fact, many Hatha Yoga practices such as asanas and pranayama are also a part of Raja Yoga, and practicing both can be complementary to one another.

Overall, the choice between Hatha Yoga and Raja Yoga comes down to personal preference and what type of practice resonates most with you. If you are interested in physical health and balance, Hatha Yoga may be the best choice. If you are interested in spiritual liberation and self-realization, Raja Yoga may be more suitable.


Today, Hatha Yoga is widely practiced around the world and is often used as a therapeutic tool for a variety of health conditions. While the physical postures and breathing techniques are an important aspect of Hatha Yoga, the ultimate goal is to achieve a state of inner peace and spiritual awakening.


The content is purely informative and educational in nature and should not be construed as medical advice. Please use the content only in consultation with an appropriate certified medical or healthcare professional