Light on Yoga: The Bible of Modern Yoga

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The definitive guide to the philosophy and practice of Yoga–the ancient healing discipline for body and mind–by its greatest living teacher. Light on Yoga provides complete descriptions and illustrations of all the positions and breathing exercises. Features a foreword by Yehudi Menuhin. Illustrations throughout.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Schocken; Revised edition (1979)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0805210318
  • ISBN-13: 978-0805210316
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 1.1 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds

Customer Reviews

Excellent text and reference guide for Yoga and Breathing techniques

54 people found this helpful
 on July 14, 2015
By Medha A
This is a truly classic and the most comprehensive text of Yogasanas. What I liked about the book in addition to intricately detailed steps of achieving poses is — (1) For difficult poses, it also gives alternative preparatory poses that a beginner can start following to graduate to the actual pose, (2) Towards the end of the book, Shri Iyengar has given week-by-week yoasana guide to start following and go from being a complete novice to the most advanced practitioner. On average it takes 3-6 months to achieve decent skill, and up to 2-3 years to become a master. (3) Also towards the end of the book are given specific Yogasanas to be done for specific health problems, like migraines, heart trouble, high/low BP, backaches etc. (4) The guidance given on how to practice Yogasanas and Pranayama together is excellent. It shows the depth at which Iyengar himself had studied the theory of yoga and pranayama! Excellent!!! People who have criticized this book saying it’s not for the beginners, should note my point #2 above. I think these people have not paid attention to ALL the sections in the book, and hence have felt discouraged.

Changed my Yoga Practice!

12 people found this helpful
 on June 6, 2016
By Ayrs2014
Aside from the fundamental knowledge that I’ve received from the yoga asanas out of this book, the Introduction (Part 1) was such an enjoyable read! Part One touched on everything in the stages of yoga (from the niyamas and yamas to samadhi) and how to obtain enlightenment. I felt B.K.S Iyengar was very compassionate and loving in his words to the reader. Light on Yoga is definitely a comprehensive read for the yogi and provided the photographs of each posture (along with the reasoning behind each asana (dedication), and how to safely get into the posture and the effects each posture has on the body. There is also an entire section dedicated to pranayama and the technique. Highly recommended read for those on the spiritual path of yoga.

Thank You BKS Iyengar!

6 people found this helpful
 on June 20, 2018
By Steve Normand
This book is wonderful! I’d like to start by saying Yoga is an entire system, not just Hatha Yoga poses. Not only does this book provide the Asanas (Hatha Yoga poses) preformed perfectly by the author, but BKS also does an excellent job explaining the Yogic philosophy (which is a must if you are looking to receive the full benefit of Hatha Yoga). If you fully apply the teachings in this book daily you will become far more than just a flexible body (: Apply as much or as little as youd like but rest assured that this book and the Master that wrote it knows what he’s talking about and has made a convenient map for you to follow that even includes an ‘Asana Courses’ in the appendix that map out your entire 300 week Hatha Yoga regimen. Give the book a try, you will be glad you did.

From A Newbie

28 people found this helpful
 on May 22, 2014
By M. Briden
My massage therapist is also a certified Iyengar yoga instructor. After a year plus of massage therapy, she suggested that I might have greater benefits working with her one on one in Iyengar yoga. In my early 60s, I have had lumber surgery and a cervical spine fusion. I was very hesitant to try this but she has taken additional classes in working with people like me. In order to learn more about Iyengar yoga, I purchased this book – it was very illuminating and answered many of my questions – the lead one of which was ‘what am I getting into’……..Well I am several weeks into working with my instructor and it was a good decision for me, between the use of blocks, the yoga strap, the 3-minute-egg, the folding chair, the ropes anchored to the wall, and an amazing, patient teacher, I can do this. I recommend this text by the founder of Iyengar yoga and I know that I will reread it again. PS: I had studied t’ai chi for several years back in the ’90s (remember those?

Inspire your practice and your teachings by picking something that looks impossible

3 people found this helpful
 on May 23, 2018
By Teresa G.
This book helps inspire my practice over and over again. Just flip it open to some amazing pretzelly pose, and then read through the instructions for how to get there. I may never get to the pretzel demonstrated, but enjoy the process of breathing my way into each of the stages on the way there. Definitely helps when I’ve run out of ideas for a class I need to teach.

A Treasure Trove of Yoga knowledge!

3 people found this helpful
 on June 8, 2018
By Ali J.
This book is a treasure trove of information for beginning yogis such as myself! The section that talks about ailments and the yoga poses to alleviate said issues was worth the price of this book alone!

Has the best appendices I’ve ever seen in any Yoga book

16 people found this helpful
 on July 24, 2014
By Julieann
From http://booktalksbyjulie.blogspot.com/ – One of my great passions in life is yoga and even though a lot of other activities have been put on hold during my pregnancy, yoga has been a lifesaver. If anyone has any type of condition and/or just wants a deeper understanding of the yoga poses, “Light on Yoga” is highly recommended. It is broken down into three sections. The first section as an introduction to yoga, starting with its origins in India and going through the transitions yoga has experienced. The second section is a dedicated to the yoga poses and covers each one in detail with photographs and step-by-step instructions of how to reach the pose. What I liked most about this section is the inclusion of the benefits of each pose, the ailments that can be helped by that pose, and the precautions of the pose. The last section is dedicated to describing yoga breathing and the concept of Pranayama. I will admit that this is my least referenced section of the book but it covers the techniques of breathing, its effects on the body, and how to maintain it through your practice. Most of the time, I don’t reference appendices much. But that is not the case with “Light on Yoga”.

The introduction is a fantastic lecture on the different aspects of yoga

6 people found this helpful
 on November 15, 2015
By Chris Emmett
This is the classic dictionary of asanas. The introduction is a fantastic lecture on the different aspects of yoga. The draw back is this does not actually show the Iyengar method, which you have to go to a teacher for. It does not show Mr. Iyengar’s ingenious prop/equipment methods for supporting asana alignment. No restorative yoga.