Recently, an article appeared in a local paper about the popularity of yoga. What was perhaps most unsettling was a sidebar definition of Ashtanga Yoga:
“Ashtanga: Faster-pased ‘power yoga’ for those raised on video games or have no patience.”
I was shocked and disappointed to read such a dismissive definition of Ashtanga Yoga aimed at a certain "category" of people.
Whoever did (or did not do) their research seems to think that if you are impatient, this is the yoga for you, since it is faster-paced (five breaths in each posture). In fact, Ashtanga Yoga consists of eight limbs, and asana (posture) is only one of those eight limbs.
Ashtanga Yoga demands patience and persistence, but if you are lacking in those areas, you will certainly benefit as the asana practice alone increases your patience, persistence, focus, concentration, respiration, balance, strength, and flexibility.
Learning a series of postures by memory over a period of months and years, learning the next pose when your teacher feels you are ready, certainly requires patience. Memorizing a set sequence of postures requires a great deal of focus and concentration. The postures themselves ask you to give your full attention to the details of the posture as you align your movements to the breath. Digging deeper into all eight limbs will help to strengthen your character and the quality of your life.
Ashtanga Yoga is for everyone, actually anyone who has the determination to stick with it.