Ashtanga yoga gets its name from asha and tanga, eight limbs. It is based on ancient yoga text thousands of years old that stated there were eight limbs, or supports, that serve as the foundation of a yoga practice. Yoga means union, so the eight limbs help unite body, mind and spirit. The eight limbs are:
Yama refers to a person's moral and ethical standards and personal integrity. The five yamas that lead to decent behavior are:
* Not killing or doing harm (ahimsa)
* Not being envious
Niyama refers to self-discipline and spiritual practice in one's daily life. This can be gained through meditation, the practice of mindfulness, and/or attending a house of worship and leading a good life.
There are five niyamas: