Viniyoga Tradition

From the ancient text the Yoga Sutras, comes the term viniyogah. We understand viniyoga to mean appropriate application of tools for each stage of development – a step by step process for growth in Yoga, or self-discovery and personal transformation.

The American Viniyoga ™ Institute uses ‘viniyoga’ to refer to an approach to Yoga that adapts the various means and methods of practice to the unique condition, needs and interests of each individual.

To offer the best practices of Yoga, teachers must understand the beginning place for each student: the present condition, goals and means available.  As we all differ and constantly change there can be no ready-made lessons.

What you will experience

This Viniyoga approach choses from the comprehensive teachings of Yoga: asanas, pranayama, meditation, sound, rituals and philosophy and offers these in stages determined appropriate to the group or individual.

Although practices continually evolve and there are no set series of movements, there are core principles particular to this approach.

  • During asana practice, students learn to synchronize the breath and movement.
  • Postures are adapted to the individual and not the  individual to the postures.
  • The repetition in and out of postures as well as holding of postures in accordance with student’s abilities.
  • The art and science of sequencing of postures & breath techniques to achieve a certain result from the practice.

Viniyoga can challenge the strong, restore the tired and support the injured and those who require special care.The therapeutic and comprehensive nature of this approach requires long-time study by committed teachers.

The tradition from which this approach evolved comes from T. Krishnamacharya and his son T.K.V. Desikachar of Chennai, India.

Further Reading

  • Kraftsow Gary, Yoga for Transformation. New York, Penquin Group, 2002.
  • Kraftsow Gary, Yoga for Wellness. New York, Penquin Group, 1999.
  • Desikachar T.K.V, The Heart of Yoga, Developing a Personal Practice. Vermont, Inner Traditions International, 1995.
  • Desikachar T.K.V, Desikachar Kaushtub, Moors Frans, The Viniyoga of Yoga, Applying Yoga for Healthy Living,
  • Krishnamacharya Yoga Mandiram, India, 2001.


tasya bhumisu viniyogah

Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

Sutra III.VI

Your deepest presence is in every small contracting and expanding, the two as beautifully balanced and coordinated as birdwings.