Yoga Systems: Ashtanga • Viniyoga • IyengarGeneral Yoga

Viniyoga™ (prefixes vi and ni plus yoga) is an ancient Sanskrit term that implies differentiation, adaptation, and appropriate application. The practices of Yoga provide the means to bring out the best in each practitioner.

Main Theory

This requires an understanding of a person’s present condition, personal potential, appropriate goals and the means available. Just as every person is different, these aspects will vary with each individual.

The American Viniyoga™ Institute uses the term 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 – giving each practitioner the tools to individualize and actualize the process of self-discovery and personal transformation.

This approach to yoga evolved out of the teachings transmitted by T. Krishnamacharya and T.K.V. Desikachar of Madras, India.

There are four points that characterize the main difference between the Viniyoga™ approach and most other forms of asana practice.

  1. The use of repetition into and out of postures in addition to holding postures.
  2. The emphasis on function rather than form in asana practice, and the science of adapting the forms of the postures to achieve different results.
  3. The emphasis on breath as the medium for movement in asana, and the science of adapting the pattern of breathing in asana to produce different effects.
  4. The refined art and science of combination which allows teachers to create sequences of different orientation, length, and intensity to suit the intention and context of each practice.

Program Director

Mirka Kraftsow, Director of The Viniyoga Program at Westside Yoga Studio

Mirka Scalco Kraftsow has been a health practitioner and educator since 1974. Born and raised in Italy, Mirka traveled and studied different modalities of dance, movement, psychology and meditation in India, Europe and the United States. Over the years Mirka has helped hundreds of individuals develop and maintain a personal practice and manage challenging personal and therapeutic conditions.

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