Iyengar Yoga is named after B.K.S Iyengar who developed it after experimenting with yoga for years. Iyengar yoga is a type of Hatha Yoga which gives importance to detail, accuracy, and alignment while performing any asana. Through the practice of asanas in a systematic way, it aims to unite the body, mind, and spirit for health and well-being.
Iyengar yoga is considered by its practitioners to be a powerful tool to relieve the stresses of modern-day life, in turn helping to promote total physical and spiritual well-being. After performing asanas regularly strength, mobility, flexibility, and stability is achieved by the practitioners.
B.K.S. Iyengar has organised over 200 classical yoga poses and 14 different types of Pranayama (with variations) ranging from the basic level to advanced. This organized sequence helps students to move slowly from simple poses to advanced poses. This detailed and step-by-step approach helps yoga students in developing their mind, body, and spirit.
Iyengar Yoga is identified by exceptional attention to detail and precise focus on body alignment. Iyengar founded the use of "props" (aids in performing asanas) such as cushions, benches, blocks, belts, blocks, and blankets, straps, bolsters and sandbags which function as aids allowing beginners to perform asanas more easily and completely than might otherwise be possible without several years of practice. Props help older people, an injured or ill person to perform the asanas and enjoy their benefits. Props provide support to the body which in turn requires less muscular effort to perform asanas and prevents the body from the risk of injury and strain.
Iyengar Yoga is solidly based on the traditional eight limbs of yoga described by Patanjali in his Yoga Sutras.
Iyengar yoga is different from other styles of yoga due to its 3 main elements: Technique, Sequence, and Timing.
- Technique - Technique means the accuracy of the body alignment and the execution of pranayama.
- Sequence - It means the sequences or order in which asanas and breathing exercises are practised in Iyengar yoga. To achieve the desired result a specific sequence is very much necessary to be followed as only a combination of certain yoga asanas (poses) and pranayama (breathing techniques) can help in achieving the desired result.
- Timing - It refers to the time spent in performing each yoga pose or pranayama.
Everyone can easily practice Iyengar Yoga irrespective of age, health status or gender, etc with the help of supported method (props).