Yoga for the Three Stages of Life: Developing Your Practice As an Art Form, a Physical Therapy, and a Guiding Philosophy

Overview

Essential reading for those looking to customize their practice to life's changing needs.

• Includes sections on vedic chanting, throat breathing, and exercises for women.

• Presents a unique portrait of T. Krishnamacharya and his teachings.

For 33 years Ramaswami studied with the legendary T. Krishnamacharya, teacher of B.K.S. Iyengar, Pattabhi Jois, and T.K.V. Desikachar and perhaps the most influential figure in the field of yoga in the last 100 years. Since that time he has ...

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Yoga for the Three Stages of Life: Developing Your Practice As an Art Form, a Physical Therapy, and a Guiding Philosophy

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Overview

Essential reading for those looking to customize their practice to life's changing needs.

• Includes sections on vedic chanting, throat breathing, and exercises for women.

• Presents a unique portrait of T. Krishnamacharya and his teachings.

For 33 years Ramaswami studied with the legendary T. Krishnamacharya, teacher of B.K.S. Iyengar, Pattabhi Jois, and T.K.V. Desikachar and perhaps the most influential figure in the field of yoga in the last 100 years. Since that time he has developed Krishnamacharya's teaching into what may be the most highly evolved program available for making yoga a way of life, rather than simply a routine. In seventeen chapters Ramaswami lays out the whole philosophy of yoga, including principles for right living, postures, breathing practices, meditation practices, and mental disciplines.

Key to Ramaswami's teaching is the focus on adapting yoga to individual needs and to different stages of life. During the early part of life, learning yoga as a physical art form is most beneficial for the self-confidence and discipline it instills. In middle age, yoga should focus on physical therapy and maintaining optimum health as far into life as possible. In the last stages of life, the practitioner will be ready to focus on the ultimate goal of yoga—true understanding of the philosophy behind it and the realization of truth.

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Editorial Reviews

Yoga Connoisseur
"The title of this book gives you a good indication of what this excellent book is about. A lot to live up to, but this book lives up to it. The author points out that there have been more books on yoga in the past twenty years than ever before.The author thought that he had something to add to the discussion, and after reading this book, I agree. I strongly recommend this book. It is not for beginners, as the author points out, but can be used as a reference for ongoing practice. It it well written and well organized. The book is great. It encourages the reader to explore the science of yoga, and go beyond the asanas and exercises to expand on the union of yoga."
Networking News
"Ramaswami, a student for 33 years of the legendary yoga master T. Krishnamacharya, has developed and expanded those teaching to include a key element: the need to take into consideration the individual's stage in life while practicing yoga."
Reviewer's Bookwatch
"Individuals ready to devote their lives to the field of yoga will find Yoga for the Three Stages of Life an excellent introduction which blends the usual guide to postures and meditation practices with insights on adapting yoga to individual needs and different stages of life. Young and old receive appropriate discussions of yoga techniques geared to age, sex and ability."
Paramarth Tatwam
"The book by Sri Srivatsa Ramaswami is much more than a compendium of Asanas; it captures the spirit of the Hindu view of life of which hatha yoga is a part. This is a wonderful book that makes an excellent reference for the practitioner of hatha yoga, and a great reading for the non-practitioner."
Yoga Journal
". . . Many of the asana variations are seldom seen in most contemporary hatha yoga books. . . . There is much fruit here for the experienced, motivated student to harvest."
Hinduism Today
"Young, old or in between, this book will give you a complete yoga routine."
Int'l Journal of Yoga Therapy
"This is a thoroughly enjoyable book, written with the sincerity and wisdom you would expect from a long-time, dedicated student. More experienced students, teachers and Yoga therapists will certainly want a copy of this book in their library."
New York Spirit
"Yoga for the Three Stages of Life has a clarity and simplicity unlike many of the other books recently published."
From the Publisher
". . . Many of the asana variations are seldom seen in most contemporary hatha yoga books. . . . There is much fruit here for the experienced, motivated student to harvest."

"Yoga for the Three Stages of Life has a clarity and simplicity unlike many of the other books recently published."

"Individuals ready to devote their lives to the field of yoga will find Yoga for the Three Stages of Life an excellent introduction which blends the usual guide to postures and meditation practices with insights on adapting yoga to individual needs and different stages of life. Young and old receive appropriate discussions of yoga techniques geared to age, sex and ability."

"Ramaswami, a student for 33 years of the legendary yoga master T. Krishnamacharya, has developed and expanded those teaching to include a key element: the need to take into consideration the individual's stage in life while practicing yoga."

"The book by Sri Srivatsa Ramaswami is much more than a compendium of Asanas; it captures the spirit of the Hindu view of life of which hatha yoga is a part. This is a wonderful book that makes an excellent reference for the practitioner of hatha yoga, and a great reading for the non-practitioner."

"The title of this book gives you a good indication of what this excellent book is about. A lot to live up to, but this book lives up to it. The author points out that there have been more books on yoga in the past twenty years than ever before.The author thought that he had something to add to the discussion, and after reading this book, I agree. I strongly recommend this book. It is not for beginners, as the author points out, but can be used as a reference for ongoing practice. It it well written and well organized. The book is great. It encourages the reader to explore the science of yoga, and go beyond the asanas and exercises to expand on the union of yoga."

"This is a thoroughly enjoyable book, written with the sincerity and wisdom you would expect from a long-time, dedicated student. More experienced students, teachers and Yoga therapists will certainly want a copy of this book in their library."

"Young, old or in between, this book will give you a complete yoga routine."

July/August 2001 Yoga Journal
". . . Many of the asana variations are seldom seen in most contemporary hatha yoga books. . . . There is much fruit here for the experienced, motivated student to harvest."
October & November 2001 New York Spirit
"Yoga for the Three Stages of Life has a clarity and simplicity unlike many of the other books recently published."
May 2001 Reviewer's Bookwatch
"Individuals ready to devote their lives to the field of yoga will find Yoga for the Three Stages of Life an excellent introduction which blends the usual guide to postures and meditation practices with insights on adapting yoga to individual needs and different stages of life. Young and old receive appropriate discussions of yoga techniques geared to age, sex and ability."
June/July 2001 Networking News
"Ramaswami, a student for 33 years of the legendary yoga master T. Krishnamacharya, has developed and expanded those teaching to include a key element: the need to take into consideration the individual's stage in life while practicing yoga."
Journal of Sringeri Vidya Paramarth Tatwam
"The book by Sri Srivatsa Ramaswami is much more than a compendium of Asanas; it captures the spirit of the Hindu view of life of which hatha yoga is a part. This is a wonderful book that makes an excellent reference for the practitioner of hatha yoga, and a great reading for the non-practitioner."
Online magazine at yogacritic.com Yoga Connoisseur
"The title of this book gives you a good indication of what this excellent book is about. A lot to live up to, but this book lives up to it. The author points out that there have been more books on yoga in the past twenty years than ever before.The author thought that he had something to add to the discussion, and after reading this book, I agree. I strongly recommend this book. It is not for beginners, as the author points out, but can be used as a reference for ongoing practice. It it well written and well organized. The book is great. It encourages the reader to explore the science of yoga, and go beyond the asanas and exercises to expand on the union of yoga."
September/October 2001 Hinduism Today
"Young, old or in between, this book will give you a complete yoga routine."
International Journal of Yoga Therapy
"This is a thoroughly enjoyable book, written with the sincerity and wisdom you would expect from a long-time, dedicated student. More experienced students, teachers and Yoga therapists will certainly want a copy of this book in their library."
From the Publisher

"Yoga for the Three Stages of Life has a clarity and simplicity unlike many of the other books recently published."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780892818204
  • Publisher: Inner Traditions/Bear & Company
  • Publication date: 1/28/2001
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 1,130,356
  • Product dimensions: 8.00 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Srivatsa Ramaswami has taught yoga in universities, hospitals, and schools in India for more than twenty years. A familiar figure on Indian radio and television, he now teaches workshops throughout the United States as well.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments

Introduction

Part One: Yoga Siddhanta, or Theory 

1. My Studies with Sri T. Krishnamacharya and Others
2. The Story of Patanjali
3. What Is Yoga?
4. Advanced Yoga
5. Mantrayoga
6. The Eight-Part Yoga and Its Ten Commandments

Part Two: Yoga Sadhana, or Practice
7. Standing Postures
8. Supine Postures
9. Sarvangasana and Sirsasana
10. Prone Postures and the Spine
11. Pascimatanam
12. Padmasana and Other Postures for Yoga Sadhana
13. Yogic Breathing Exercises and Their Health Benefits
14. Yoga for Women
15. Yoga Texts
16. Antaranga Sadhana
17. Freedom

Glossary

Index

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 8, 2001

    Review of Yoga for the Three Stages of Life

    YOGA FOR THE THREE STAGES OF LIFE is an extensive resource for anyone seeking an authentic, detailed description of yoga theory and practice. Srivatsa Ramaswami is an erudite scholar of yoga and an experienced teacher and practitioner. His teacher, Sri T. Krishnamacharya was also that of B. K. S. Iyengar and J. P. S. Pattabhi Jois, who both currently have extensive followings in the west. It may only be a matter of time before this is true of Ramaswami as well. The first section of this two part book is filled with innumerable quotes and references to authentic yogic texts. Here Ramaswami gives in-depth explanation of yoga, and the meaning of yogic terminology and its practical import. He also tells the story of Patanjali, the ancient sage credited with codifying the system of yoga. This theoretical section of the book alone was worth its price. I own many yoga books that only give a small portion of the information available in this text. The second section is on practice and presents the unique system of 'vinyasa krama', which coordinates movement into and out of the classical yoga postures with the breath. All major areas of practice are included and there are some quite advanced postures described and depicted. The section on breathing is one of the most detailed you will ever find short of going to India and training at the foot of a master. Ramaswami not only describes the practices but also explains how these exercises benefit health at every level of being. Because this is not a watered down introductory book, any yoga enthusiast will find expert guidance into expanding capacity. There are also chapters on practices particularly beneficial to women and on more esoteric aspects of yoga, such as stilling the mind and yoga's ultimate goal of freedom. Srivatsa Ramaswami has provided an enormous amount of information, detail, and source material for the benefit of the entire yoga community, and especially for the experienced practitioner who wants to improve and learn even more.

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