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Asana, Pranayama, Mudra and Bandha Paperback – 1 Aug 2003

63 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Bihar School of Yoga,India; 4 Reprint edition (1 Aug. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 8186336141
  • ISBN-13: 978-8186336144
  • Product Dimensions: 3.2 x 14 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (63 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 16,413 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


Excellent book which explains to some degree the "inner posture" with each asana discussed. Unlike most books, you can actually perform the asana from the instructions in this book alone. Stops short of explaining the effect of the various asanas on the Doshas (in Ayurveda) but does list the benefits of the poses. A must have book for any student of hatha yoga --By A Customer on July 12, 2002

There are innumerable books on yoga to be found; some emphasising the practical aspects with postures (asana), complete with colour photos - and some impossibly esoteric, meant for the select few with mystical leanings. This book combines a comprehensive overview of asana; while at the same time giving clear explanations of the deeper aspects of yoga, including breathing (pranayama), body attitudes (mudra), energy locks (bandha), energy centres (cakra), and yogic cleansing (hatha yoga). The roots of yoga are in the ancient vedic and tantric texts; many of which have remained inaccessible to western readers until the last century. Much of the teachings were kept secret; firstly, because they had been banned by a Hindu priesthood that felt threatened by anarchic schools of self-liberation; and secondly, for fear that the powerful techniques could be misused by misguided opportunists. Swami Satyananda Saraswati was one of the renegades who shocked the yogic establishment by not only translating the texts and teaching the techniques to western students; but then went on to publish an entire series of books, clarifying and promoting yoga in an unprecedented way. Satyananda's other significant move was to bring yoga into the domain of medical science, and explain esoteric techniques in terms of western anatomy and physiology. He started the Bihar Yoga Bharati, which offers undergraduate and postgraduate studies in subjects like Yoga Psychology and Applied Yoga Science; and initiated the Yoga Research Foundation which studies the medical effects of yoga. --By Gerald Lopez on November 7, 2005

About the Author

Swami Satyananda was born at Almora in 1923.In 1943 he met Swami Sivananda in Rishikesh and adopted the Dakshnami sanyasa way of life. In 1955 he left his guru's ashram to live as a wandering mendicant and later founded the International Yoga Fellowship in 1963 and the Bihar School Of Yoga in 1964.Over the next twenty 20 years Swami Satyananda toured internationally and authored over 80 books. In 1987 he found Satyannada Math,a charitable institution for aiding rural development, and the Yoga Research Foundation. In 1988 he renounced his mission, adopting khestra sanyasa, and now lives as a paramahansa sannyasin.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

188 of 188 people found the following review helpful By YogiEdwards on 11 April 2004
Format: Paperback
Published by the Bihar School of Yoga in India, this book aspires to be a university-level academic and practical studfy book, acknowledging both Western and Indian health traditions. It is very comprehensive with easy-to-understand step-by-step instructions as to how to perform the exercises, along with clear illustrations. It covers Asana – the stretching exercises (which many people confuse as the be-all and end-all of yoga) – basice, intermediate and advanced, Pranayama – the breathing exercises, Bandha – holding exercises to control the flow of “prana” energy in the body, Mudra – gestures and positions to promote the flow of psychic energise in the body, Shatkarma – methods of physical cleansing of the body (some rather grim) so as to better perform the exercises, and an introduction to Yogic physiological theory – chakras, prana and the like.
I like this book because it does not reinforce the Western body-mind separation inherent in our habitual distinction between Yoga (more correctly Asana) and Meditation, but treats both as part and parcel of the pursuit of holistic health and spirituality. However the book is versatile enough for one to pick and choose exercises as one likes. There is also a very handy therapeutic index at the back which advises which exercises are most appropriate to which ailments.
This is the only book that I refer to on an almost daily basis. I have to admit that I haven’t got an adonis body or achieved oneness with Godhead yet, nor have I even attempted any of the intermediate or advanved asanas, but these things can take time – and I’m feeling better all the time.
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163 of 165 people found the following review helpful By donca vianu on 1 Aug. 2001
Format: Paperback
It is difficult to find a book which really stands apart from other books on Yoga, and this book really does. Swami Satyananda's covers all aspects of Hatha Yoga in a very detailed way. Each and every asana is explained in step by step easy to follow manner. Nothing is missed out. It has a beginner, intermediate and advanced sections to suit all and also to progress slowly and steadily which is the real key in Yoga practice. There are seperate sections on Pranayama, Bandha, Mudra and Shatkarma making it a comprehensive treatise. It has an appeal for both a beginner and advanced student of yoga. Benefits and contraindications of all asanas are given. Those looking for a hatha yoga book with spiritual insight will also find very informative. On the whole this is the best book on Hatha Yoga I have read and I wholeheartedly recommend it.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By W. John on 4 April 2009
Format: Paperback
The Bihar School have made a wonderful reputation for themselves by teaching yoga, and publishing books on yoga, using carefully researched and tested information of the highest quality.

I use the book all the time - I teach yoga, to people wanting to lose weight, relax, to excited kids and people who are sick, pregnant, or have some physical problem, and I find the advice and suggestions (from the therapeutic index at the back) incredibly useful.

I use the segmented structure to manage my classes - teaching the first series to all beginners, and selecting asanas (yoga postures) from the other sections as my students need - depending on the advice from the index. I depend on this book to check any doubt when it comes to a yoga pose or a student's special needs - the illustrations and descriptions of the poses, references to prana/energy movements and focus points, and carefully listed contra-indications have never let me down.

And I think if you are practising at home without a teacher this could be the bible of yoga you need - with the clear line drawings, you are more likely to get the pose right without a teacher, than with other more lavishly illustrated photo-guides where its not always clear how to get into the position. I've learned quite most of my more advanced asanas or postures from this book.
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49 of 52 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 31 July 2004
Format: Paperback
As BWY teacher, this was one of the main course books we referred to during training and is therefore something of a bible. It is very easy to follow and gives both the physical and spiritual aspects of yoga techniques which are easy to follow.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Alchemma on 8 Nov. 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book covers almost everything you will ever need to know about Satyananda style yoga. It starts by intoducing very simple preparatory exercises and progresses through to very advanced asanas with good line drawings throughout. It also covers breathing. cleansing and spiritual practices in depth. I have been dipping in and out of yoga for 20 years and can honestly say this is the best yoga book I have ever owned!!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By George A. Watts on 5 Jun. 2011
Format: Paperback
When doing my Yoga Teacher Training course with the BWY, this book was one of the books on the recommended books list...and for very good reason.

If you teach yoga, this is one of those must have resources for yoga teachers.

Other great yoga teacher resources include...

Yoga Teacher Lesson Plan Kit [DVD], which inludes 1001 Yoga Lesson Planning Tips, Tools & Templates For Yoga Teachers.

Yoga Teacher Business Kit [DVD], which inludes 201 Business Tips, Tools & Templates For Yoga Teachers.

Quick Yoga Sites [DVD], which shows yoga teachers how to set up a great looking website with zero technical skills.

Yoga Studio Business Plan Kit [DVD]which inludes 201 tips, tools and templates to help you build and grow a successful yoga studio.
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