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4.8 out of 5 stars
Yoga:  The Iyengar Way
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133 of 136 people found the following review helpful
on August 14, 2000
Format: Paperback
"Yoga: the Iyengar Way" suceeds where other yoga books fail because of its superior pictures, which give extreme detail to all of the asanas (poses). It's always better to get guidance from a good teacher, but for home practice, this is one of the best books out there and is a great supplement to group practice. As its title implies, Iyengar yoga is taught in the book, and thus the use of props and alternative poses allows for those of different levels of experience to do as much of the asana as they can.
In short, if you're going to own one yoga book, make this the one -- its pictures are MUCH better than either "Yoga for Dummies" or the "Complete Idiot's Guide to Yoga." In fact, if there's a yoga book with better photography and presentation, I haven't seen it.
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81 of 83 people found the following review helpful
on January 2, 2000
Format: Paperback
This book is great for anyone who is interested in learning yoga. I have been doing yoga for a couple of years now, and this was the first yoga book that I bought. The book is well illustrated and contains more poses than any other yoga book that I have seen. Each illustration shows the correct form for each pose and also gives modifications for those who are not quite as flexible as the people in the illustrations. The book also contains a section with over 60 different yoga routines from begining levels to advanced, so you don't have to try to plan out which poses to do in what order. For those of you who are more interested in a "Power Yoga" routine, I have also found that adding a sun salutation as a transition between the standing poses in the routines adds a little more spice to the practice.
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44 of 45 people found the following review helpful
on November 4, 1999
Format: Paperback
This is a wonderful book based on the teachings of B.K.S. Iyengar. The poses are explained in an easy-to-understand way, with large, color pictures. Highly recommended, especially for beginners who may be intimidated by Mr. Iyengar's more comprehensive book "Light On Yoga."
Buy both books. Study them daily, do the poses, and in every way your life will begin changing for the better.
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91 of 100 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
Such is the celebrity and influence of B.K.S. Iyengar as a teacher of yoga that a book with his name in the title virtually guarantees publishing success.

This book is a fine example of the phenomenon. It is an attractive, coffee table type yoga book for the nineties written by students of Iyengar. Perhaps the most important feature is the beautiful (and non glamorous) photos that illustrate the asanas with an almost mystic power. There's some irony here because it was the photos of Iyengar himself demonstrating asana (over six hundred of them) that more than anything catapulted him to fame some years ago with his now classic Light on Yoga, which I highly recommend as an extension of this book.

Obviously this is a different sort of book, aimed at beginners, but with some depth. It is more generic in a sense as it delves only lightly into the ideas underlying yoga while concentrating on the practical. Indeed its philosophic stance is succinct, and perhaps that is best for an approach focused on the physical health aspects of yoga. One weakness is that it is a little short on pranayama, and consequently on meditation.

Iyengar does contribute a foreword, however, and his spirit is apparent throughout. Overall this is excellent of its type, reminding me of something by Richard Hittleman from some years ago.

--Dennis Littrell, author of "Yoga: Sacred and Profane (Beyond Hatha Yoga)"
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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
on October 26, 1998
Format: Paperback
My yoga instructor recommended this book, and she was right! Not only are the pictures of the asanas clear and helpful, but they include many helpful hints for holding the pose correctly, and suggest modifications for yogis of different levels. There is also a lesson plan at the end of the book, which is helpful for people who wish to follow a yoga exercise regime at home. I love it!
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53 of 61 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
This book provides excellent information on a wide variety of yoga poses, or asanas. Each asana is clearly illustrated and accompanied by step-by-step instructions on how to complete the pose; the information provided is detailed and straight-forward. The asasas are broken up into groups--standing poses, seated poses, etc.--and each individual pose is clearly labelled for level of difficulty, from one star (beginners) to four stars (advanced). At the end of the book, suggestions for various yoga practices are provided based on the the four levels of difficulty.
Although the information contained in this book is exemplary, there are several reasons why I do not feel it would be appropriate for beginners. First of all, I found the tone to be somewhat snobbish at times, such as when it suggested that if you have difficulties in a pose, you might need to go to a yoga teacher for "correction." Secondly, I have been practicing yoga for two years, and many of the poses labeled as either appropriate for "beginners" or "general practice" are still quite challenging to me. Third, throughout the book, poses are referred to by their traditional Indian names rather than the common names which are used today--ie, Tadasena rather than Mountain Pose. This is not a problem when you're looking at the actual pose, but the practices at the end of the book refer to the Indian name only and without photographs, which necessitates flipping back and forth through the book in order to attempt a practice. Finally, although modifications are suggested for each pose, many of these are not illustrated, which would make it difficult for beginners to follow along.
I think this book would probably be most appropriate for intermediates looking to further their practice. For beginners, I would recommend Rodney Yee's "Yoga: The Poetry of the Body" as an alternate yoga book, or Patrica Walden's video "Yoga Practice for Beginners," which also closely follows the Iyengar method.
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27 of 29 people found the following review helpful
on April 8, 2002
Format: Paperback
Want to learn how to do a large number of asanas safely and without having to struggle through a lot new agey jargon? This book is brilliant, it's sober and analytical, clearly written and illustrated (meaning no guessing, no chance for injury), philosophically rooted without being polemic. I've had mine for years, it doesn't get old or dated. Use in good health.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
on March 24, 1999
Format: Paperback
This book completes a set for any dedicated yoga practitioner, the other two being Light on Yoga and Gem for Women. There is nothing beyond this; just devoted practice.
Just looking at the clear pictures will be an important reference point one can return to time and again. The brief explanations of Yoga, the postures and tips dotted here and there are free from esoteria and go to the heart of the matter.
I would stronly recommend that beginners look at the poses in this book for fifteen minutes each day. For those a little more advanced, return to this book with humility and reconsider the basics.
For the really advanced, you shouldn't be reading this anyway!
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on August 10, 2001
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
I have been practicing yoga for several years using videos and have been searching for a comprehensive book that explains the most used asanas. This book had been incredibly helpful... each pose is explained in detail with all the "hints" to help you remember to keep perfect form. The index also gives great recommendations for using poses in a series. Great for beginners or those that want to take their yoga practice further!
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
I own several dozen wonderful yoga books and learn something new about the vast subject of yoga from all of them. However, Yoga: The Iyengar Way, is the timeless classic I turn back to over and over again when I feel the need for outside discipline to help me organize my personal home practice. On Sunday mornings, when I have the leisure to practice several hours, I make my way through all the catagories of poses, including all the Standing Poses, Inverted Poses and Backbends, by turning the pages of this book. The clear photographs continually inspire my practice and remind me not to skip more challenging poses I might otherwise be tempted to avoid. I highly recommend this book to students of all levels and their teachers. Namaste.

Suza Francina, yoga teacher and author, The New Yoga for People Over 50 and Yoga and the Wisdom of Menopause.
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