B.K.S. Iyengar

Yoga Master B.K.S. Iyengar is one of the world's principal yoga masters, renowned for his study, practice and innovative teaching of yoga. He committed his life to yoga and generated a student and teacher base of hundreds of thousands of people worldwide.

In 1975 the Ramanani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute (RIMYI) was opened in Pune, India with the assistance of students from many countries. Mr. Iyengar's daughter, Geeta Iyengar, and son, Prashant Iyengar, direct the Institute, where more than 1400 students travel to study each year.

Mr. Iyengar was a pioneer in several respects. He made the practice of yoga asanas (postures) into an art form, experimenting on himself over years of intense practice. After observing where his students needed support in their asanas, he was the first to introduce the use of props in yoga. He was also one of the first yoga teachers to instruct large groups of students.

Named in Time Magazine (April 2004) as one of the 100 most influential figures in the world, Mr Iyengar was placed in the heroes and icons category. In the accompanying article, actor Michael Richards (Kramer in Seinfeld), wrote, "The beauty of Iyengar yoga in particular is the revelation that there is a living architecture hidden in all of us that only needs unveiling."

In fact, given the breadth of Mr Iyengar's influence, all yoga in North America can be called "Iyengar-influenced," simply because he created the context. In doing so he has given millions of people the key to finding the intelligence of their own bodies, and shown us how we might move through body to spirit.