Hatha Yoga History

A couple centuries subsequent to the death of the sage Patanjali, Yoga masters in India created a system of practices that were specifically designed to revitalize the body as well as extend one's lifespan. These masters refuted the traditional teachings of the ancient texts and, rather, accepted the physical body as the manifestation of the Self, in a bid to attain enlightenment.

As a result, they came up with the concept of Tantra Yoga.


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This Yoga technique included revolutionary techniques for purification of the body and mind. They were more done in order to snap the ties that bind us to physical existence. This study of these physical-spiritual links - not to mention body centered practices - resulted in the development of a whole new system of Yoga, one called Hatha Yoga.

In the late 1800's and early 1900's, Indian yogis started moved to the West. The result of their preaching and demonstrations was a lot of attention and followers. During the 1920's, Hatha Yoga was robustly promoted in India thanks to the lifetime efforts of one yogi named T. Krishnamacharya . This yoga Master traveled throughout the length and breadth of India giving demonstrations of yoga asanas and opened the first Hatha Yoga institute.

Krishnamacharya trained 3 students, successfully. They were to be handed down his legacy and boost the popularity of Hatha Yoga. These 3 Yoga stalwarts were B.K.S. Iyengar , T.K.V. Desikachar and Pattabhi Jois .

Yoga's importation continued to grow in the West until, in 1947,one woman yogi, Indra Devi founded a yoga institute in Hollywood. Ever since a lot of Western as well as Indian teachers turned pioneers, popularizing Hatha Yoga and attracting millions of followers worldwide. Today, Hatha Yoga has a number of schools or styles, all of which emphasize the many different aspects of Yoga practice.

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