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Iyengar Yoga

Iyengar Yoga is a very precise form which uses various props to help students correctly align themselves within each of the postures.

Iyengar yoga practice offers a gentle yet demanding opportunity to learn and understand the physical practice in a precise and well organised set of postures which can lead to greater stamina, strength and physical, emotional and spiritual alignment.

The props used in addition to the obligatory yoga mat, range from wooden and foam blocks through to belts and straps. Each of these are used to assist in achieving correct alignment. For example in a "simple" cross legged sitting posture one might sit on 4 or even 5 foam blocks in order to gently work towards the lotus position. As the body loosens up the blocks can be reduced in height - provided of course the physical alignment is correct.

Props, including belts, wooden bricks and foam blocks are used to assist settling into postures (asana) and aid the movement between many of the yoga positions thereby helping to avoid injury, rather than as a tool to force the body into alignment!  they are an aid rather than a means of self torture!

A brief history of BKS Iyengar

BKS Iyengar was born in 1918 - Bellur Krishnamachar Sundararaja Iyengar.

In 1934 he was introduced to yoga by his elder sister's husband, Sri T Krishnamacharya

In 1936 he was deputed by his guru to teach yoga in Pune, Western India.

In 1943 he married Ramamani. They went on to have five daughters and one son.

In 1952 he met violinist Yehudi Menuhin who was instrumental in introducing Bellur and his form of yoga to the western world.

In 1966 he published Light On Yoga and in 1973 he founded the Iyengar Institute and between 1975-1984 he taught most of the classes personally.

In 1998 he taught over 800 students for week to mark his 81st birthday!

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