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of course, once you bite into ashtanga, there is so much you want to know straight away. so i got myself some books to set me off.

1. david swenson’s ashtanga yoga: practice manual

i have to say i got this book after some research online as people were very complimentary about it. i did use it for maybe a week but once i went into the class, i did not need it anymore. i appreciate david’s approach and poses for beginners but i have a feeling that once you go the easier way, you will not be working hard enough to manage to do a full pose. i prefer the idea of doing little but correctly and adding new poses only when you have mastered the previous one. i guess it is a nice reference book and he seems an amazing person but i do have to say i preferred my second book choice

2. gregor maehle’s ashtanga yoga: practice and philosophy

it is a brilliant book for anyone who wants to get into ashtanga yoga. gregor writes and explains in detail how all your muscles work and warns you about the main dangers when working on each individual asana. it is well illustrated and very easy to read. i have been coming back to it regularly as it does describe in detail which muscles to engage in each pose.

apart from the introduction to ashtanga and the asanas of the primary series, the last part of it is of course the philosophy behind the practice – i am still to read through it in detail (history of lineage and yoga sutra).

3. sri k. pattabhi jois’ yoga mala

no special introduction for this one. the path and philosophy explained by the guruji himself. a must-read for any self respecting fellow ashtangi.

i am of course on the lookout for the new and exciting read. i have heard ‘guruji’ is an inspiring book. would love to hear from anyone out there for suggestions and comments.

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