International Infopage for Ashtanga Yoga

Tradition: the legendary history of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga

Generations of great yogis have shaped the living tradition of Ashtanga yoga for centuries: Learn why Ashtanga is like yoghurt fermentation, yoga is more than just a kaleidoscope and why ants are responsible that we cannot read an important document about it's Vinyasa system.

The Ashtanga Yoga practice fascinates us through its elegance and power - and it intrigues us by its ancient tradition. Every movement, every breath and every line of vision has been practiced for thousands of years, just like today. To be a part of a tradition that was practiced and passed down through generations of yogis is a magical idea.

Sometimes we hear that Ashtanga Yoga has no tradition all. It is said: "Ashtanga Yoga is just a modern invention." It is true that much of the Ashtanga Yoga tradition is difficult, if not impossible, to prove. But do we always need proof?

From one point of view, life is like looking through a kaleidoscope. You see wonderful colors and geometric patterns. If you are interested only in the physical reality, you will deconstruct the kaleidoscope, and come to the conclusion that all the beauty you have seen comes from only a few splinters of old colored glass. You are disillusioned. The dream of the kaleidoscope has been destroyed.

The Who's Who of the Ashtanga Yoga tradition

Looking back at the legendary lineage of the Ashtanga tradition: From Patanjali to Vamana Rhishi, and Krishnamacharya to BNS Iyengar and Pattabhi Jois - an ancient yoga tradition with refreshing vitality in the present. more »

Krishnamacharya – the guiding light of Ashtanga Yoga

Ashtanga yoga, as well as many other types of yoga in the world, would probably be absent without him: Sri Tirumalai Krishnamacharya (1888-1989) saved traditional yoga from oblivion and created the basis for our present-day yoga practices. Just a myth? more »

How Ashtanga Yoga found its way to the West

It was just a small photo in one of many yoga books. And yet this picture set a revolution in motion. It brought Europeans and Americans to Pattabhi Jois in India, and Ashtanga Yoga to the West. more »

Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga travels the world

From Jivamukti to Sharon Gannon and David Life, to Brian Kest’s Power Yoga - many modern styles of yoga are children of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga. So you can be anywhere in the world and feel a bit at home... more »

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