• Sri Tirumalai Krishnamacharya

    Sri Tirumalai Krishnamacharya

    Looking back to the tradition of Ashtanga Yoga, even before Pattabhi Jois’ time, one comes across Sri Tirumalai Krishnamacharya. This great sage and yogi travelled to the Himalayas in 1916 to master the practice of yoga, after his professors induced him in doing so at the univerisity. His apprenticeship next to Sri Ramamohan Brahmachari lasted seven and a half years. In 1933 he teaches for the first time in Mysore, India and later on in Madras, India to various Hindu and Westen students. He is considered as the establisher of contemporary yoga, since he was the first that used sequences of asanas in combination with breath and movement. Vinyasa Krama has been a teaching methodology over the years, upon which Pattabhi Jois’ teaching in the Ashtanga Vinyasa System was based.

  • Sri K. Pattabhi Jois

    Sri K. Pattabhi Jois

    Shri K. Pattabhi Jois was born in 1915 in Kowshika, at the state Karnataka of southern India, and he was the fifth in line from the nine childern of his family. Everyday he walked 8 kilometres to go to school in the neighbouring town of Hassan. In November 1927, at the age of twelve, he witnessed a yoga demonstration from Tirumalai Krishnamacharya and enchanted by the spectacle, he seeked his Guru the very next day, and asked him to become his apprentice. He training started immediately. A few years later, as he tirelessly attended all the classes in the Sanskrit university, he continued his yoga practice and he made his living by giving yoga demonstrations. In 1932 in a yoga demontration which was conducted by the university, he met his Guru again, who had moved in Mysore the previous year (1931). Their second teacher - student reunion lasted twenty five years. The Maharaja was particularly fond of Jois and asked him to perform morning yoga demonstrations for his guests. In 1937 due to Krishnamacharya’s tour in India, the Maharaja placed Jois in charge of the yoga shala in the palace, giving him scholarship, food and a salary although Jois had not completed his studies at the time. In 1948 he founded the AYRI (Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute) to further study the therapeutic benefits of the practice. Even though Jois taught the Ashtanga sequence as we know it today, back then he adjusted the sequence depending on his students needs. What contributed to that was the fact that he also worked in the Ayurvedic hospital in which he had to deal with serious cases of diabetes, leprosy, elephantiasis etc. Shri K. Pattabhi Jois, also known as Guruji, taught uninterruptidly for seventy years in a row until the age of ninety one. He remained authentic, and loveable until his death on May 18th, 2009. His whole family including his son Manju Jois, his daughter Saraswathi Rangaswamy, his grandchildren Sharath Rangaswamy and Sharmila Rangaswamy learned the yoga practice from him and continue the diffusion of his teachings keeping Guruji’s spirit alive.