Light on Yoga by B.K.S. Iyengar
Anyone interested in pursuing a serious yoga practice.
In a nutshell:
Iyengar provides a summary of the history of yoga, beyond what many folks consider when attending yoga classes or watching videos.
“The study of Yoga is not like work for a diploma or a university degree by someone desiring favourable results in a stipulated time.”
Why I chose it:
Part of my goal for 2021 is to live more of the life that I want, and building a consistent yoga practice is high on that list.
This is an interesting book. I’ve always known yoga is not just breathing and stretching, but based more in a broader way of living. As a white woman raised in the US, most of my exposure to yoga has been through Lululemon view. A way to stretch and build strength and relieve stress, without really looking at where yoga comes from. I’ve been in classes where there’s some lip service paid to it, but nothing more.
Obviously, one isn’t going to understand an entire cultural concept like yoga from reading one book. But this is a good starting place. It discusses the connection between what is going on with the body and what is going on in the mind. I’ll need to read it over a few times to understand it better, but again, a good place to start.
After the introduction, Iyengar offers instructions and photos of over 200 poses, which are quite easy to follow. He then has put together three ‘courses,’ spreading across 300 weeks (yes, you read that right). Today I started with course one, which lasts about 32 weeks. It’s been seven or eight years since I regularly practiced yoga, and I can feel it, but I can also see how this is going to work, and I’m excited about it.
Videos are definitely an easy way to start learning yoga, and I don’t think a book can fully replace that for more visual learners, but I do think this book is a great place to start.
Keep it / Pass to a Friend / Donate it / Toss it: