WHAT IS IYENGAR YOGA?
Iyengar Yoga, based on the teachings of yoga master B.K.S. Iyengar, is rooted in the 2,500-year-old classical yoga tradition of the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. One of the world’s most widely practiced forms of yoga, Iyengar Yoga emphasizes the alignment of body, breath, mind, and spirit within each yoga pose. This precision builds strength and stamina, balance and flexibility, avoids injury and maximizes benefits, and provides a deep sense of well-being.
B.K.S. Iyengar brought yoga to the west with his pioneering teaching in the 1960s and ’70s, ushering in today’s explosive growth in the popularity of yoga. For his seminal role in making yoga a ubiquitous element of mainstream culture, Time Magazine declared Mr. Iyengar to be one of the 100 “most powerful and influential people” in the world.
One of the many reasons for this is Mr. Iyengar’s development of yoga props, which revolutionized yoga teaching. Now used in yoga classes of all styles, the skillful use of equipment such as chairs, straps, blocks, etc. enables everyone regardless of age, strength, or flexibility to benefit from the study and practice of yoga.
From the beginning, Iyengar Yoga develops strength, stamina, concentration, coordination, flexibility, and more. Using physical alignment as a starting point, Iyengar Yoga encourages the spread of intelligence throughout the body, the growth of self-awareness, and an experience of the asanas as a form of “meditation in action."
Iyengar Yoga is far more than simple exercise. What elevates the practice of asana from exercise to yoga is intelligent action and the infusion of awareness throughout your entire being when practicing the poses. When you refine what might otherwise be purely mechanical movement with intelligent action, you transform your practice into a meditation in motion that illuminates the previously dark, unconscious areas of your body and mind with the light of awareness.
B.K.S. Iyengar (1918-2014) was born the 11th of 13 children during an influenza epidemic. He overcame poverty and deadly childhood illnesses to begin his study of yoga at age 16 with his brother-in-law and guru, T. Krishnamacharya. He practiced and studied intensely for years. In the process, he developed encyclopedic knowledge which fueled his teaching. Included among his many influential books are Light on Yoga, Light on Pranayama, Light on the Yoga Sutras, The Tree of Yoga, and Light on Life. Promoting yoga as an art, science and philosophy, Mr. Iyengar made yoga accessible to ordinary people worldwide, regardless of race, gender, age or religion.
Dr. Geeta S. Iyengar (1944-2018) began learning yoga as a child by observing her father. She actively taught at RIMYI and around the world since 1962 and is the author of several books including Yoga: A Gem for Women, a pioneering work on yoga for every stage of a woman’s life.
Sri Prashant Iyengar in addition to teaching daily classes at RIMYI, has written extensively about yoga philosophy and the ancient texts and has made numerous audio recordings on the yoga sutras. He is the director of RIMYI.
Abhijata Iyengar started seriously studying yoga from the young age of 16 under the direct guidance of her maternal grandfather, B.K.S. Iyengar, her aunt, Dr. Geeta S. Iyengar and uncle Sri Prashant Iyengar. She is a senior teacher at RIMYI.
In accordance with his lifetime contribution to the art, science, and philosophy of yoga, B.K.S.Iyengar pursued trademark protection to ensure that yoga associated with his name reflects his work. As of August 14, 2007 the name "IYENGAR" associated with "YOGA" has been registered as a trademark and is protected in the United States in connection with the teaching of Iyengar Yoga.
Because the Iyengar name is trademarked, only Certified Iyengar Yoga Teachers in good standing are permitted to use "Iyengar Yoga" to describe their yoga programs or classes. Teachers who are not certified in the Iyengar method are not permitted to represent or describe their classes using the word “Iyengar” in any way. They may not claim to teach “Iyengar Yoga” or any variant of that label, such as “Iyengar influenced,” “Iyengar based,” or “Iyengar style.”
We, as an organization, adhere to the ethical guidelines set forth by the Ethics Committee of IYNAUS. If you should have any questions or concerns please contact IYNAUS through the link provided.