The word Vinyasa is an incredibly broad term. Just like the ancient language, Sanskrit, the word comes from, Vinyasa is founded on interpretation. Two of the most accurate definitions I have heard come from three great and admirable teachers. Srivatsa Ramaswami, a 30 year disciple of Sri T. Krishnamacharya, the father of modern Yoga, says in his book The Complete Book of Vinyasa Yoga , "The Sanskrit word vinyasa comes from a prefix vi, which means variation, and a suffix nyasa, which means "within prescribed parameters." " Ramaswami goes onto describe that the parameters are contained in the Yoga Sutra of Patanjali, which are: Steadiness (Sthira); ability to remain steady, Comfort (Sukha); use of breath and the close attention of the mind to the breath, Smooth and Long Breathing (Prayatna Sithila).
Another definition that I love for Vinyasa comes from Richard Freeman. In his audio book, The Yoga Matrix, he describes Vinyasa as in its primary early usage to be a way of empowering things, like empowering a Mantra by repetition, empowering the control of the breath through Sthira Sukham Asanam (Yoga Sutras 2.46). The way to empowerment is various steps to get to a certain destination, which is similar to the definition given by Timo Jimenez, a highly educated and experienced teacher of the Iyengar lineage.
At Yoga Bound we are a Vinyasa Yoga and Yoga Therapy studio. We aim to focus on the steady, comfortable long breath that carries, supports and evolves your Yoga practice through various steps (progressive postures) founded on the breath. Through a comfortable breath and one pointed focus of the mind on the breath you will be able to move gracefully, fluidy with steadiness and ease through your Yoga practice, as well as life.
Namaste, Alana Bray