Hatha Yoga is the term used for the physical branch of yoga that leads one to the fruits of the practise, namely Raja Yoga. The word Hatha is a construct of the words "ha" (meaning sun/masculine energy) and "tha" (moon/feminine principal), both of which inhabit ones body. "When the light of the sun and moon comes into contact with objects, shadows are created" *
Hence, the result of Shadow yoga (Chaya Yoga) is the dissolution of these shadows, or obstructions. Thus, Shadow Yoga is purely a synonym of Hatha Yoga. It was developed by Zhander (Shandor) Remete after many decades of dedicated research and experience, not only in the field of non-commercial Hatha Yoga but also in the ancient martial arts and traditional Indian dance. This system promotes an understanding of the primary principles of movement through the application of marmasthana (the vital energetic points in the body), the system of pranic winds known as vayus and the nadi, or the subtle "corridors" the vayu traverses. If a student has a wilful desire to do the seemingly more elaborate aspects of a practise, without first being grounded in the foundations of the system one is learning, it exposes them to potential cycles of injury, confusion and the prospect of one day having to back track and undo.
Hatha Yoga, as with any discipline, cannot and should not be rushed.
Therefore, the Shadow System of Hatha Yoga utilises the preparation work found in the traditional martial, dance and yoga disciplines. It uses simple joint work (calanas) to release excess stiffness and first engage ones attention on the natural, inherent movements of the body. The student is then gradually taught one of three preludes.
These sequences each develop slightly different aspects of the practise and within these preludes lays the ground work for the appropriate asana, suited to the individual. Uddiyana bandha (abdominal "conditioning") is used to stimulate the inner "fire" or agni, tone the organic structure and develop a clearer sense of centre.