And....breathe... Developed by Swami Satchidananda in the 1960s, Integral Yoga brings together (or integrate - you see, it’s not just thrown together) several branches of yoga and aims to improve the body and the mind to achieve a truly peaceful and harmonised life.
Swami Satchidananda himself described the practice as: "a flexible combination of specfic methods designed to develop every aspect of the individual: physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual. It is a scientific system, which integrates the various brances of Yoga in order to bring about a complete and harmonious development of the indiviudal".
Integral Yoga includes teachings from:
For a typical Intregral Yoga session you’ll need to wear clothing that allow freedom of movement, and it might be a good idea to dress in layers so that you’re comfortable throughout each section of the class. You’ll need a yoga mat and possibly a cushion as well, so check whether these are provided by your centre or not. The classes are described as ‘moving meditations’ and are intended to help you on the path to inner peace and joy. Ahh...we’re more relaxed already.
If you’re new to Yoga, or simply love all forms of it too much to stick to just one – Integral Yoga could be the perfect option for you. It’s an all-rounder, so you’ll get a strong body, a clear mind, a sharp intellect and a full, devoted life – all for the price of one. The style is predominantly gentle with a few more challenging poses mixed in - so it's suitable for everyone and some centres even offer pregnancy or children’s classes.
There are more than 50 Integral Yoga Teaching Centres around the world.