| The world’s most widely practised method of yoga is that taught by Yogacharya Sri BKS Iyengar of Pune, India. |
Born in 1918 in Bellur, India, he studied andpractised yoga continuously for 75years. He died on 20 August 2014 in Pune.
Iyengar’s thorough study, understanding & mastery of yoga are unrivalled in modern times.
Having taught for over 75 years in all five continents, he won worldwide respect and recognition for his achievements and made yoga accessible and relevant to people everywhere, no matter what their physical or mental ability. He set the standard for his teachers and students while his numerous textbooks on yoga have all become classics.
He set up The Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute in Pune, India, where his daughter Smt. Geeta ( sadly now parted in 2018) son Sri Prashant Iyengar and granddaughter Abhijata are directors.
In 2004 BKS Iyengar was listed as one of the 100 most influential people in the world in Time Magazine. There are over 1000 qualified Iyengar yoga teachers inthe UK alone, and thousands more in over 40 countries. There are over 20 national Iyengar yoga associations worldwide.
The Teaching System
BKS Iyengar has evolved precise posture (asana) and breathing (pranayama) techniques with a firm philosophical base in the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali.
Patanjali lived about 1700 years ago in India. He is credited with collating and writing the first records of Yoga, Ayurvedic Medicine and Sanskrit Grammar, which consist of 196 sutras (aphorisms) which cover all aspects of life and are still more than relevant in today’s society.
The Iyengar system of teaching is methodical and progressive, emphasising detailed correctness and absolute safety. When necessary, it uses supports called “props” that allow students to progress in their practice of postures safely at their own pace, where there is stiffness or injury. Beginners work in a basic way on simple postures according to their capabilities. As they develop they then move on to more refined ways of working as well as on to more complex postures.