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THE BIG BOOK OF YOGA: ADDITIONAL READING

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Yoga & Kriya by Swami Satyananda Saraswati

More from Bihar. If the previous title is their Hatha Yoga manual, this is like the Hatha Yoga encyclopedia. Contains a massive amount of information and techniques, including, as the title would suggest, all the Kriyas (purification practices).

The Yoga Tradition of Mysore Palace by N. E. Sjoman

Traces the T. Krishnamacharya lineage of Hatha Yoga (which includes Ashtanga Vinyasa, Iyengar Yoga, and other major branches) back to his early days teaching at Mysore palace in southern India. Notes the remarkable similarities between the Sritattvanidhi, a palace exercise manual of British naval exercises and Indian wrestling, and the system of physical conditioning which eventually became known as Krishnamacharya's Hatha Yoga. Does this lineage owe the majority of its Yoga teachings to an old book of wrestling exercises? This book attempts to answer this question, and to provide a better context for Hatha Yoga in the 20th century. It's an interesting read, well researched - and it makes one wonder!

Asana, Pranayama, Mudra, Bandha by Swami Satyananda Saraswati

Bihar School of Yoga's comprehensive manual of Hatha Yoga. It's a good reference to keep around. Note that its statements about which asanas activate which chakras is strictly the opinion of the Bihar School - other systems may differ.

Hatha Yoga Anatomy & Physiology

Yoga Anatomy by Leslie Kaminoff

Good anatomical reference written in an accessible tone and clear format. Covers all the essentials of Hatha Yoga anatomy and physiology.

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Anatomy of Hatha Yoga by David Coulter

Coulter does an excellent job of moving these rather dry subjects into an accessible, easy-to-read format. Includes photographs and illustrations. Covers major categories of asanas (forward bends, backward bends, inversions, twists, etc), as well as bandhas and some mudras. A great reference for anyone interested in getting to know their bodies better through Hatha Yoga.

Chakras, kundalini & subtle energy

The Serpent Power by Sir John Woodroffe (aka Arthur Avalon)

Technically this is a work of translation - Woodroffe makes translation and commentary on two 18th /19th century texts which deal with the classical Hindu understanding of the chakras and Kundalini energy. This is a rather dry scholarly work, but it is the first, and in many ways still the best, exposition in English on the classical chakra system.

Laya Yoga by Shyam Sundar Goswami

This is an incredibly in-depth look at all the textual references on chakras from all the many Indian esoteric traditions. Documented with painstaking detail, this work covers both major and minor (secondary) chakras. In some places it seems to copy what Woodroffe did in The Serpent Power, but it usually exceeds its predecessor in the quantity and scope of its referenced material.

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