Yoga in the Iyengar Method

Awareness must be like the rays of the sun: extending everywhere, illuminating all. — BKS Iyengar

Guruji & Leigh 2002

With Mr. Iyengar in Pune

A dynamic approach to classical yoga, developed by Mr. Iyengar of India, whose contribution to yoga in the 20th century is unparalleled, leading the Oxford Dictionary to add the term “Iyengar Yoga” to the most recent addition. He is the author of Light on Yoga, considered a master treatise on yoga practice and the innovator of the use of props, commonly used in many yoga studios around the world today. Longer holdings and study of the asana (poses) cultivate the structure for the breath and take the student deeper inward. The Iyengar method of yoga is known for detail, alignment and sequencing, which ultimately work on the consciousness, moving the student towards dhrana, dhyana and samadhi, embracing all eight limbs of yoga.

I have been practicing and studying yoga in the Iyengar method since 1982. Recommending yoga asana and breathing techniques, yoga classes and teachers, to my massage clients led me to pursue my own studies in yoga further and inspired me to teach. In 1999 I entered a three year Iyengar method teacher training program and certified as an Iyengar yoga teacher. I travel to India annually to study directly with the Iyengars at RIMYI (Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute) in Pune. Since 2002 I have been very fortunate to study with Mr. Iyengar, his daughter Geeta and son Prashant on many occasions, having traveled many times to the Iyengar Institute in Pune as well as seeing Geeta abroad. I have been fortunate and grateful to receive direct teaching from each of them. The study of yoga has enriched my life far beyond what I could have imagined. I continue to study as well as teach and travel to India every year. Most recently to continue my studies with Fr. Joe Pereira in the field of yoga, chronic pain and addiction support.

Leigh Anne Milne with Father Joe Iyengar

With Fr. Joe Pereira in Goa

Leigh Anne Milne with Patricia Walden

With Patricia Walden in Bellur

Kripa Iyengar Yoga is a therapeutic branch of Iyengar yoga developed by Fr. Joe Pereira with Mr. Iyengar’s blessing. Kripa Iyengar yoga is a heart centered practice to provide support to those in addiction recovery. Focusing on breath, meditation and is a parasympathetically directed practice to boost the immune system and decrease pain and suffering. I was fortunate to meet Fr. Joe in the 1990s when I was captured by his enthusiasm for this work. Fr. Joe is an Indian-Portuguese Priest, mentored by both Mother Teresa and Guruji BKS Iyengar. I continue to study with Fr. Joe, a few years back he blessed me to teach his Kripa method of Iyengar yoga in the guru–shishya tradition.

In keeping with tradition I wish to express my gratitude to my many great teachers, most notably Guruji, Mr. BKS Iyengar, and his daughter and son Geeta and Prashant Iyengar. Their sincere commitment and burning zeal for yoga is a gift of light.

I would also like to thank my western teachers who have shared from their own experience and kept the teachings pure: Patricia Walden, Janice Vien, Shirley Daventry French, Maureen and Dr. Bruce Carruthers, Marlene Mawhinney and Fr. Joe Pereira (of India).