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What is Yoga?

Yoga is derived from the Sanskrit root yujir meaning to bind, yoke or join together. Yoga is the union of the individual self with the universal self. Patanjali who wrote The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali says in Sutra 1:2  “yogash citta vrtti nirodha": meaning yoga is the quieting of the movements in the consciousness. Through the practice of the 8 limbs of yoga, the yoga practitioner can cultivate a stillness of mind both on and off the mat. Yoga is a philosophy and also a practice.

What is Iyengar yoga?

BKS Iyengar lives in Pune, India. He has dedicated his life to practicing and teaching the art of yoga. His unique and popular method of hatha yoga is practiced all over the world. He systematized over 200 asanas (postures) and 14 types of pranayama (breath control).

Here are the hallmarks of the Iyengar method:

  • Precise instruction with careful attention to alignment allows each student to practice intelligently to avoid injury or pain.
  • The use of props  (blocks, belts, chairs,blankets)  were developed by BKS Iyengar and used to position the body correctly for maximum benefit.  The use of props can help to deepen the understanding of how to work in the asanas.
  • Various sequences of asanas/pranayamas are linked together to produce variable effects on the body and mind.
  • Timing in the poses varies to intensify the desired effects of the practice.
  • Rigorous process to become a certified Iyengar teacher.

To learn more about Iyengar yoga, see www.iynaus.org

What are the benefits of yoga practice?

  • Improved strength and flexibility
  • Improved balance and stamina
  • Decreased stress levels and improved relaxation
  • Improved mental clarity and calmness

Can anyone practice yoga?

People of all ages and abilities can practice yoga. It’s important to choose a class level that is appropriate for your experience level and ability. If you have health concerns that do not allow you to participate in a group class, private individual yoga instruction would be an option to consider.