AYI.info - The International Ashtanga Yoga Information Page

Not only about Ashtanga Yoga: traditional practice and innovative alignment, vivid philosophy and age-old tradition, word-by-word translations of mantra, Yoga-Sutra and more, Sanskrit pronunciation and writing - THE info page with international teacher directory.

"Ashtanga Yoga is 99% transpiration - and 1% explanation"

Sri K. Pattabhi Jois

All you need for your 99% practice of Ashtanga Yoga - and certainly also the 1% theory: Dive into the details of the traditional series of Asana, as taught by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois. But you will also find forms for a therapeutic approach to them. Join us for online yoga classes, learn about innovative alignment and philosophy. Our yogi finder will help you finding your way to a teacher nearby. Best to start with the most popular pages on AYI.info:

The AYI method


"Pure for Sure!"

A proverb from Mysore (The city where Ashtanga comes from)

Tradition and Innovation can form a team: We help you gaining always new perspectives on traditional Ashtanga Yoga. Therefore we have been active for you. These articles and online yoga classes are brand new on AYI.info:

Inspiration for your practice

Tristana – The Lotus Blossom of Ashtanga Yoga

When movement and breath fuse together, the energy carries the body seemingly effortlessly and focus moves from the exterior to the interior, we reach Tristana. Or: through vinyasa, bandha and drishti we achieve the spiritual dimension in Ashtanga yoga practice.


Rules on final sounds

The rules on final sounds facilitate the pronunciation of words when they stand alone, before suffixes are added and before further Sandhi rules are applied. According to these rules, words can only finish with a vowel, a Visarga (ḥ) or nine specific consonants (k, ṅ, ñ, ṇ, n, m, ṭ, t, p).


Internal Sandhi

Internal Sandhi describes the phonological change within a word after a grammar ending has been added.


Fricatives and Aspirates

On the articulation of a fricative, a confined space is created. The air streaming out is swirled and creates a fricative. Compared to semivowels, which also count as approximants, the tongue moves closer to the confined space, though without the contact necessary for a plosive. In Sanskrit, there is a semivowel for four of the five places of articulation (h, ś, ṣ, s).


Roman transliterations with diacritical signs

From 1816 (Franz Bopp) onwards, Western Indologists started to represent the Sanskrit language or, respectively, the Devanagari characters faithful to the correct pronunciation in Roman letters. This formed the basis for the IAST and Kalkata Standard 2001 and finally resulted in today's ISO 15919 norm.



Palatals are produced by a vibration or stricture at the palate. In Sanskrit, there is a palatal for each sound class: vowel (i / ī), plosive (c,ch,j,jh), nasal(ñ), semivowel (y) and fricative (ś).


Technical encoding

With the spread of computers and the Internet in particular, technical encoding systems developed such as ITRANS, Harvard-Kyoto, Velthis and SLP1. With these systems, Sanskrit texts can be spelled in the correct pronunciation on a regular keyboard.



The retroflexes characteristic of the Sanskrit language are produced with the tongue rolled back behind the teeth: vowel (r̥, r̥̄), plosive (ṭ,ṭh,ḍ,ḍh), nasal (ṇ), semivowel (r) and fricative (ṣ).



Gutturals are produced deep down at the back of the oral cavity, at the bridge of the soft palate and the throat. In Sanskrit, there are guttural vowels (a / ā), plosives (k,kh,g,gh), nasals (ṅ) and fricatives (h). There is no guttural semivowel.



In contrast to the corresponding German sounds, the tongue is not positioned at the dental root (alveolar) but almost between the teeth (dental) for: vowels (l̥,l̥̄), plosives (t,th,d,dh), nasals (n), semivowels (l) and fricatives (s).



A sound that is produced either at or with the lips is called a labial. In Sanskrit, there are labial vowels (u, ū), plosives (p, ph, b, bh), nasals (m) and semivowels (v). A labial fricative exists only indirectly.



On the articulation of nasal sounds, the closure at the place of articulation is not released. Most of the air streams out through the nose. The closed back part of the oral cavity thus becomes a variable resonance chamber for ṅ,ñ,ṇ,n and m.


Vowels as final sounds

According to this external Sandhi rule, vowels as final sounds merge with the next word if it also starts with a vowel. If the word starts with a consonant, there is no merger.


Visarga (ḥ) as a final sound

As a final sound, a Visarga (ḥ) is adapted to the following word as an aspirate or sibilant.


Consonants as final sounds

As final sounds, consonants adapts to the following word according to the external Sandhi rules described here.

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