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Structural Yoga Therapy: Adapting to the Individual Hardcover – January 1, 2001

4.6 out of 5 stars 39 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

Structural Yoga Therapy has been written for teachers and serious practitioners who want to use yoga to bring complete balance to the body. Mukunda Stiles begins by providing a comprehensive overview of the spiritual philosophy of yoga, and its many branches. He discusses everything that a beginning student needs to consider when choosing a practice, including how to find a yoga teacher. He also shares his solid understanding of anatomy and kinesiology (how specific muscles and bones react during movement) so that you can understand how each asana affects your body. Structural Yoga Therapy "TM" involves a series of 24 asanas. You'll learn "body-reading" to determine what your posture reveals about muscular imbalances. You'll find out about joint mobility and muscle strength and learn how to work with a series of joint-freeing exercises to strengthen muscles. Once you are fully acquainted with your individual needs, Stiles teaches you how to synthesize a personalized program from the 24 Structural Yoga asanas to optimize health and healing. This valuable textbook is also useful for anyone working in physical therapy, myofascial release techniques, or other forms of massage.

About the Author

Mukunda Stiles has been a student of yoga since 1969, living and teaching in ashrams in both India and America. He has been on the board of directors of several international yoga organizations and has directed residential yoga centers in California, Boston, and most recently the Yoga Therapy Center near Boulder, CO.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 360 pages
  • Publisher: Weiser Books; First Edition edition (January 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1578631777
  • ISBN-13: 978-1578631773
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 8.2 x 10.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #296,482 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By P. Baldwin on April 8, 2001
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've looked at many books about yoga for various physical needs, and this is the most knowledgable and comprehensive book I've seen. Reading Peg2's comments, I can see what she means about photos. They would have been nice, or at least drawings of the postures in various phases, but in my mind this "inadequacy" is greatly overshadowed by other aspects of this book. Charts and comprehensive details about muscles need to be strengthened or stretched. There is a great deal of information about body structure, and the reader is guided through an analysis of their own posture problems. I have suspected that my shoulder, back, and knee problems were related to each other in some way. This book confirmed it. I have been doing recommended postures for a few weeks and am seeing real progress. I feel like I'm equipped to go into a yoga class and modify or substitute postures for to meet the needs of my body. The author has a physical therapy degree and well as yoga training and his knowledge level is very apparent in this book. I can't recommend it enough! This information is not available anywhere else that I know about, in this beautifully organized, accessible way.
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Format: Hardcover
This is an excellent book from which one can create one's own "basic" yoga practice. Please understand- basic does not necessarily translate to beginner or easy. I have used this sequence with some of my classes and while there are some postures that most people do not feel a Herculanean challenge in, there is no one who feels that this sequence is a walk in the park.
I believe most people are going to come to this book for a sequence grounded in a solid anatomical understanding of the body and the effects of common yoga postures and breathing techniques on the body. While this book does that, it also presents a framework upon which one can build one's own total yoga practice- incorporating mantra and meditation as well as breathing and posture. Stiles has a way of writing about both the very scientific and very spiritual at the same time and bringing the concepts together in such a way that one wonders why one ever thought of them as distinct in the first place.
Though the practice he outlines is very valuable, his suggestions for body reading and use of the asanas for addressing postural problems makes this manual stand out. In addition to evaluating standing posture, he also outlines a 21-movement Joint Freeing Series. While a useful diagnostic tool, it is also a satisfying practice on it's own (if one's mobility or stamina is compromised) or in conjunction with the asanas. He also outlines six Spine Freeing exercises which can aid in gently increasing mobility of the spine.
If you want the nitty gritty anatomical detail of why yoga "works", this isn't your book. Check out Couler's Anatomy of Hatha Yoga for that. However, this book will give most readers the level of detail that they need to understand their own physical issues and how yoga can help them.
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By A Customer on March 20, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Want to create a yoga routine that is tailored for your needs? Structural Yoga Therapy is the book for you. Mukunda Stiles guides you through setting goals, body reading, freeing your joints, breathing and so much more. Charts and worksheets help you determine what muscles need strengthening and stretching. It is not a book for those who like sexy, glossy pictures but more a textbook for those who want more from their routine. I started yoga to relieve stress and to improve my posture and found that after six months I wasn't getting any further. Mukunda Stiles has made it easy for me to target problem muscles and joints and free my body into poses I never thought possible!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have just started a Yoga practice, and I am interested in the therapeutic use of asanas. This book goes in depth enough to help me in this way. Mr. Stiles makes it possible to learn about and self treat all types of musculo-skeletal issues safely, though he does recommend having a teacher to supplement your own practice. This book has explained what muscles I need to stretch and strengthen. The history and background of yoga given in the introductory chapters is well written and interesting to read, which was an unexpected bonus for me. I am looking forward to using the exercise series outlined in the book.
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By A Customer on April 2, 2002
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This wonderful gem came across my desk quite by accident and I am ever so thankful. The book is clear, concise and well written just for starters but more importantly gives very detailed advice for tailoring a yoga program to meet individual needs. The book is limited to a fewer number of asanas than many books but for most people this is enough when dealing with structural issues. The book also provides clear tools for evaluating structural abnormalities and suggestions for particular asanas. In addition, the discussion of yoga philosophy and traditions, as well as personal anecdotes all add to this books charm. One of the best I have come across.
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Format: Hardcover
I used this book as a part of my study and research for my Yoga Teacher course. It is completely awesome! This book is chock of very useful and informative information!! I passed my Yoga Teacher diploma course with an A+ and I believe that this book had a great deal to do with my achievement!!!
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