Yoga, the Sanskrit word for "union", is a practice that uses posture and breathing techniques to induce relaxation and improve strength, and its health benefits may surpass those of any other activity.
'Prana and Ayama'.'Prana' means life or life force. 'Ayama' means development or control. Therefore Pranayama is the development and control of life force. It is a form of breathing exercise, very important in yoga. It goes along with the asanas or exercise
Breath is the life force that sustains life. Nobody can survive more than a few minutes without air. When the breath stops, life ends. The Forefathers of Yoga developed a special system- 'Pranayama' to increase, develop and control this life force. Normal breathing uses only a fraction of our potential respiratory capacity. Pranayama helps to control this life force in a superior and extra ordinary way to reap maximum benefits.
Asanas' in Sanskrit means posture. There are around 84 asanas - each one has a special name, special form and a distinct way of performing. Asanas are designed to promote, a state of mental and physical well-being or good health.
This may be defined as the condition that is experienced when all the organs function effectively under the intelligent control of the mind. Asanas have an extraordinary capacity to overhaul, rejuvenate and bring the entire system into state of balance.