Last Updated: July 24, 2017

Definition - What does Alpa mean?

Alpa is a Sanskrit word meaning, "little," "small" or "a collection of many small things." Alpa is a root word and is used in conjunction with other words as an adjective to alter the meaning of the word.

In yoga, alpa is used to inform yogis of how to make movements in asanas, how to control pranayama and how to live a spiritual life.

Yogapedia explains Alpa

Yoga teaches many physical movements, breathing techniques and spiritual practices that require yogis to observe large and small concepts and physical movements. Alpa, when added to the name of an asana or pranayama, directs the yogi to make small movements and small breaths. When alpa is added to a sadhana, or daily practice, it means, "to take or do less." For instance, alpanidra means "sleep less" and alpaahar means "eat less." In this way, alpa can guide the yogi to live a moderate life.

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