Iyengar Yoga

What is Iyengar Yoga?

Iyengar®Yoga is a form of Hatha Yoga. It’s grounded in the teachings of the yoga master B.K.S. Iyengar. His approach to yoga was firmly based on the traditional eight limbs of yoga expounded by the sage Patanjali in his classic treatise, The Yoga Sutras, written over 2,500 years ago. Mr Iyengar spent 75 years researching and developing this style, while teaching millions and practicing daily until his death in 2014 at age 96.

A Global Inspiration

B.K.S. Iyengar is often credited with bringing yoga to the Western Hemisphere. He created a teaching methodology that his students could easily understand, experience, assimilate and integrate into their daily lives. Iyengar®Yoga is accessible to all ages, body types and abilities.

Some benefits of practicing yoga:

  • Pain relief & prevention
  • Improved sleep
  • Increased energy
  • Reduced chronic backache
  • Increased stamina & strength
  • Better circulation, no more cold feet!
  • Improved digestion
  • Increased flexibility
  • Greater mobility & awareness
  • Reduced anxiety
  • Less depression
  • Greater self awareness
  • Improved breathing
  • Straighter spine
  • Increased mental clarity
  • Relieved neck pain
  • Improved balance & stability
  • Boost in self confidence 
  • Great posture
  • Relieved chronic shoulder pain
  • Optimised health
  • An overall sense of well-being
  • Greater sense of connection
  • Optimum blood pressure

Wouldn’t you like to…

  • experience profound depths of clarity, as the postures are expertly explained and guided?
  • understand your yoga practice, why you practice, and how to improve your practice?
  • gently lengthen the spine and open the heart space to support a deep and subtle healing?
  • feel calm, clear, reconnected and with a general state of well-being?

How long have you been suffering?

  • Do you have a chronic pain or recurring injury in the feet, ankles, knees, hips?
  • Do you suffer from spinal injury, scoliosis or chronic back pain?
  • Do you have weakness, pain or unhealed injuries in the hips, shoulders, elbows, wrists or hands?
  • Do you want better quality sleep?
  • Do you want to feel stronger, calmer, more confident, and more energetic?
  • Learn about our Iyengar Home Practice and get immediate resolutions today!

My sister recommended Maya to me for my shoulder and neck pain. With Maya’s precise instructions and carefully designed yoga sequences, my neck and shoulder pain disappeared and my mobility increased after just 4 months of practice with her. She has a really direct and gentle way for healing the body. She even taught me how to use Tadasana while washing dishes and in 1 week my lower back pain disappeared.

– Elly Puspasari, Indonesia

 

“Yoga is about the will, working with intelligence and self-reflexive Consciousness. It can free us from the inevitability of the wavering mind and outwardly directed senses.” 
– BKS Iyengar, Light on Life

 

Aligning the Body & Mind

The Iyengar style emphasizes detail, precision and alignment in the development of the posture (asana) and breath control (pranayama). During an Iyengar practice the posture may be held for longer periods. Also props may be utilized for training, understanding, development and during restorative sequencing. Once the practitioner has a mature and intelligent practice Vinyasa sequences are also used.

Healing Body & Soul

Iyengar Yoga is used also for therapy and healing chronic and degenerative ailments. As such, this yoga style was developed for all body types, ages, and abilities: young, old, fat, thin, stiff, tired… Through the regular practice of Iyengar Yoga with a qualified and certified instructor, the development of strength, mobility and stability is achieved in not only the body, but also the mind and the spirit.

Practice at home on line. Learn more about our

Iyengar Home Practice Monthly Suscriptions

Technical Alignment?

“Those who categorize Iyengar Yoga as an “alignment base” miss the point. The physical is a manifestation of the spiritual. Those who see Iyengar Yoga as very technical, their vision is rooted in ignorance. Each instruction is like a dynamic mantra, that awakens and ignites consciousness in specific areas in the body. The way you present the asana shows the habitual patterns of energy in your body. So even if we imagine ourselves to be as a very spiritual beings, the state of our being is reflected through the physical body. We come to realize the big dichotomy between what we actually are and what we imagine ourselves to be! The instructions that were discovered by B.K.S Iyengar were meant to awaken the potential energy patterns in the body or the archetype, so the body functions in its natural state which is the expression of supreme Intelligence.”

Private Yoga Sessions

  • Do you have a chronic pain or recurring injury in the feet, ankles, knees, hips?
  • Do you suffer from spinal injury, scoliosis or chronic back pain?
  • Do you have weakness, pain or unhealed injuries in the hips, shoulders, elbows, wrists or hands?
  • Do you want better quality sleep?
  • Do you want to feel stronger, calmer, more confident, and more energetic?

Tailored yoga sessions to fit your specific needs, you will be guided with detailed, aligned & safe instruction in English, French or Italian.

Relax and explore your body with yoga sequences, designed specifically for you. With private sessions we will outline your abilities and challenges and set to achieve your personal goals. When necessary, props may be used to find and understand the alignment, organization and benefits of each posture in your sequence. 

You will be guided into mental quietness and full body exploration, as you re-align your spine and re-establish physical motor competency. As you gently lengthen the spine and open the heart space, you will acces a deep intelligence of the body and subtle healing of the mind and spirit. Your sessions will leave you feeling calm, yet energized, reconnected and with a general state of well-being.

Could one conversation change your life?

Find out by scheduling a free 20-minute Mind Body Soul Chat. Explore how Iyengar yoga sessions, individual coaching sessions and online mastery programs can work for you. Click the green WhatsApp button located at the bottom right side of this page or add us to your contact list and email us at info@mindbodysoulretreats.org

 

 

For many years I was practicing another style of yoga, until I got a really bad injury and stopped. I was overjoyed when I found Maya teaching Iyengar Yoga. Maya is adept in her training, clear and precise in communicating body movement and stillness of the mind. She helped me to understand and work with my injury, to regain confidence in my practice and restore my faith in yoga. She’s an exceptional teacher.

– Max, Ohio



Maya Michelle’s classes are well worth the investment. In a world where yoga retreats and trainings are taught by people with a mere basic understanding of yoga poses, the depth and quality of her teaching cannot compare with the bare 200 or 800 hour YTT that anyone can buy.

– Mathias, Florence

A Brief History of Mr Iyengar

Sri Yogacharya BKS Iyengar was born into a large improvised family. The youngest child of 13 siblings, he struggled with malaria, tuberculosis, typhoid fever and general malnutrition. His arms and legs were notably thin and weak. He suffered from a distended belly and his head used to hang down. His physical limitations made him the victim of jest by his peers. Life for him was marked by great physical effort and debilitating pain.

When he was 15 years old, BKS Iyengar was sent to Mysore to live with his brother-in-law, Sri Tirumalai Krishnamacharya, of whom it could be said is the grandfather of all modern-day yoga. The idea was for Iyengar to find relief and perhaps even some recovery from all of his illnesses. Instead Iyengar developed a keen interest in yoga and asked Sri Krishnamacharya to teach him. Sri Krishnamacharya was not particularly enthusiastic nor optimistic, but obliged, allowing BKS Iyengar to study in the Yogashala with the other pupils.

BKS Iyengar’s tutelage with Sri Krishnamacharya was a struggle. Learning the 200 Asanas, Iyengar had many physical challenges to overcome in comparison with the other students. But his luck changed one day when Keshavamurthy, Krishnamacharya’s favorite pupil left for the day, and Iyengar was able to earn his master’s attention. The guidance Iyengar sought from Krishnamacharya was hard fought, but his influence on Iyengar was life-changing and positive, and is what made Iyengar into the international phenomenon to which he became, publishing dozens of books, bringing yoga to the West, and inspiring millions of yoga practitioners.

Ashtanga and Iyengar

Many people ask about the difference between Iyengar Yoga and Ashtanga Yoga. A simplistic answer might be that Ashtanga Yoga is for able-bodied practitioners, who already have strong body intelligence and awareness, whereas Iyengar Yoga is an alignment-based practice for anyone, of any age, ability, or life circumstance.

It is interesting to note that at the age of 12 Krishna Pattabhi Jois, the founder of Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga, also studied in Mysore with Krishnamacharya around the same time that Iyengar was a resident there. Robust, vital and bold, Pattabhi was born into a Brahmin family, his father was a priest, astrologer and land owner.

Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga is an energetic series of yoga poses (Asana) that are linked with breath and flowing movements (Vinyasa). As mentioned before Iyengar Yoga is a form of Hatha Yoga. Both Pattabhi and Iyengar studied and applied the Yoga Sutras of Pantanjali and the  and Hatha Pradipika. The practice of Iyengar Yoga includes Ashtanga (the study of the 8 limbs of yoga), including Vinyasa, but only once the students have demonstrated awareness, strength and competency for those dynamic series.

Both Ashtanga Yoga and Iyengar Yoga have given rise to many spin-off western yoga styles and both teachers were influential to many famous yoga teachers today. As the traditions of yoga have been commercialized by western capitalism, the roots of Ashtanga Yoga can be seen in stylized forms like Power Yoga and Vinyasa Yoga. Likewise Iyengar Yoga has been used as a source by many popular modern yoga forms like Anusara Yoga, Fly High Yoga, Yin Yoga. Any yoga class that uses a prop has borrowed from Mr Iyengar, who spent decades tirelessly researching and inventing specific materials (bricks, belts, planks, weights, stools, bars, chairs, suspension ropes, bolsters, blankets…) to facilitate the postural practice. 

I really enjoyed Maya’s classes. What impressed me most was her attention, care and concern for every student. She’s a very talented teacher with deep knowledge of the human body. It was a great discovery for me. 

– Jean Pierre, Paris



I really wish I could have brought Maya back home with me. Her voice reconnected me with something deep. There was peace, clarity and understanding.       

– Tracy, Sydney

I took a few yoga classes in different studios in Bali and always felt lost, but not with Maya. Her classes are superb. Each practice with her I understood more about yoga and more about myself. She inspired me to practice at home.

– Chloé, Paris



I’ve been to many workshops and trainings, and have been teaching yoga classes for a couple of years now. Maya Michelle struck me as one of the most competent yoga teachers I’ve ever studied with. I never felt more safe in a yoga class. Her instructions are very clear and her eyes are very sharp.  

– Sarah, Melbourne


 

Any chance I can study with Maya, I make time. She’s very precise in her instruction, I always leave class feeling connected, relaxed, alive, and with a better understanding of my practice. She has eagle eyes. Spotting and correcting every error, and clarifying or providing alternative poses when I needed.

– Amit, Singapore

I started my yoga practice in 2008 and has since practiced many different yoga “styles” with many yoga teachers. I have been always seeking for authenticity in yoga practice; for presence, for connection with the body and the Self. Maya’s yoga teaching is all about that.

She helps me keeping my practice inwards and present. Her knowledge of human body is outstanding. She recognises the different needs of human bodies and made adjustment to each. Her yoga asana alignment is exceptional. She notices even the slightest misalignment and made correction promptly.

I have been studying yoga asana regularly with Maya for over 2 years now, and through her teaching, I feel and see the improvement in my body strength and most importantly the calmness of my mind during a “challenging” asana.

I highly recommend Maya Michelle.

– Evi Puspasari, Indonesia

Maya’s teachings made lasting impressions on me. Though I was curious about yoga and completely new to it, she was quickly able to open in me a dimension that was deeply submerged, but I know now that I have it. I don’t expect to find a master like her in Chile, but she has inspired me to search. I can’t wait to return to Bali next year or to meet her elsewhere in the world to study with her again.  

– Alberto (Moto) Maffei, Scupltor, Chile

Could one conversation change your life?

Find out by scheduling a free 20-minute Mind Body Soul Chat. Explore how Iyengar yoga sessions, individual coaching sessions and online mastery programs can work for you. Click the green WhatsApp button located at the bottom right side of this page or add us to your contact list and email us at info@mindbodysoulretreats.org

 

Studies & Certification  

2019 Junior Intermediate I & II Training. IYENGAR YOGA PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT with Olop Arpipi, Senior Teacher. BALI, INDONESIA

2015 Junior Intermediate I & II Training. IYENGAR YOGA PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT with Carole Beillargeon, Senior Teacher. BALI, INDONESIA.

2015-2017 Workshops and Retreats with Judith Adank, Senior Teacher. BALI, INDONESIA.

2014 Yoganusasanam with Geeta S. Iyengar. RAMAMANI IYENGAR MEMORIAL YOGA INSTITUTE. PUNE, INDIA.

2013 – 2019 Iyengar Yoga Institute with Olop Arpipi, Senior Teacher. BALI, INDONESIA.

2013 Certified Iyengar®Yoga Instructor, Introductory II (880 hours). ANUTTARA INSTITUT DE YOGA IYENGAR with Christian Pisano, Senior Advanced & June Whittaker, Senior 3 Teacher. NICE, FRANCE.

2013 Certified Iyengar®Yoga Instructor, Introductory II (880 hours). ANUTTARA INSTITUT DE YOGA IYENGAR with Christian Pisano, Senior Advanced & June Whittaker, Senior 3 Teacher. NICE, FRANCE.

2012 Convention Nationale, Association Française de Yoga Iyengar with Senior Iyengar Teachers from RIMYI including Abhijata S. Iyengar,  NANTERRE, FRANCE.

2012 Iyengar Yoga Instructor, Base II (880 hours). ANUTTARA INSTITUT DE YOGA IYENGAR with Christian Pisano, Senior Advanced & June Whittaker, Senior 3 Teacher. NICE, FRANCE.

2011 Iyengar Yoga Instructor, Base I (880 hours). ANUTTARA INSTITUT DE YOGA IYENGAR with Christian Pisano, Senior Advanced & June Whittaker, Senior 3 Teacher. NICE, FRANCE.

2008 – 2013 Anuttara Institut de Yoga Iyengar with Christian Pisano, Senior Advanced & June Whittaker, Senior 3 Teacher. NICE, FRANCE.

2007 – 2008 Iyengar Yoga Institute Milano with Eugenia Dalla Valle, Junior Intermediate Teacher. MILAN, ITALY.

References

Geeta S. Iyengar’s Guide to a Women’s Yoga Practice by Lois Steinberg.

Awareness Through Movement: Easy-to-Do Health Exercises to Improve Your Posture, Vision, Imagination, and Personal Awareness by Moshé Feldenkrais.

Iyengar Yoga for Motherhood:  Safe Practice for Expectant Mothers by Geeta S. Iyengar, Rita Kellar & Kerstin Khattab

Light on Pranayama: The Definitive Guide to the Art of Breathing by B.K.S. Iyengar.

Light on Yoga: The Classic Guide to Yoga by the World’s Most Foremost Authority B.K.S. Iyengar.

The Bhagavad Gita by S. Radhakrishnan.

The Bhagavad Gita: A New English Translation by Stephen Mitchell.

The Hero’s Contemplation: Yoga in the Light of the Teachings of Yogacarya Sri B.K.S. Iyengar and Non-Dual Kashmir Saivism by Christian Pisano.

Yoga: A Gem for Women by Geeta S. Iyengar.

Yoga and Scoliosis: A Journey to Health and Healing by Marcia Monroe, Loren Fishman, B.K.S. Iyengar

Yoga for Scoliosis by Elise Browning Miller.

Yoga Pradipika: A Guide to Hatha Yoga by Yoga Swami Svatmarama with foreword by B.K.S. Iyengar.

Yoga: The Iyengar Way by Silva Mehta, Mira Mehta & Shyam Mehta.

Yoga: The Path to Holistic Health by B.K.S. Iyengar.