Yoga Pioneer B.K.S. Iyengar Passes Away


You’d be hard-pressed to find a dancer who hasn’t taken yoga to supplement her training. Many don’t realize, however, that B.K.S. Iyengar is to thank for the Eastern practice’s proliferation in the U.S. The legendary yoga guru died this morning at 95 in Pune, India.

Iyengar began practicing yoga to restore his poor health as a child and went on to develop his own system, notable for its use of props and for breaking down asanas (poses) into digestible steps. He first brought yoga to the U.S. in 1956, and by the early '60s the practice was already growing immensely in popularity. He founded yoga institutes on six continents, including one in Pune. There are now more than 100 Iyengar yoga institutes around the world. His best-selling book, Light on Yoga (1966), has been translated into 17 languages. He practiced asanas well into his 90s. Read more about Iyengar and his influence on the dance world here.

Photo by Raya UD, courtesy of Iyengar Yoga Association of Greater New York

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