While modern yoga is often dealt with as a means of workout, it was originally meant as a spiritual, mental, and physical journey into self-awareness. Typically, it was done in a series of positions without repetitions and held from anywhere in between two seconds to 10 minutes, depending on the kind of yoga. Many yoga sessions will include asanas, or postures, diaphragmatic breathing and reflection.


While the precise origins of yoga are shrouded in secret, according to Lavanya Yoga, Indian sage Patanjali is often referred to as the creator of yoga, and his works, the Yoga Sutras date back to around 200 B.C. The Hindu holy book, the Bhagavad Gita also describes the presence of yoga, and researchers believe it might really date back to 3000 B.C., based upon yoga poses shown on rocks found belonging to this time-line. According to the internet site, ABC of Yoga, yoga’s history can be divided into four periods: the Vedic period, pre-classical period, classic duration and contemporary period.

Vedic Period

The Vedas are blessed scriptures or a collection of hymns of appreciation and poems, and are the earliest understood yogic teachings. Initially transmitted by word of mouth, they were ultimately written in Sanskrit and primarily consist of four collections: Rig-Veda, Sama-Veda, Yajur-Veda and Atharva Veda. In these collections, yogis instruct their fans to live a basic life of divine harmony. According to Swami Sivananda who runs the Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centers, the Vedic period played a strong role in influencing Jnana yoga or the yoga of will certainly and intelligence. The Surya namaskar or sun salutation, a common sequence of asanas is also derived from sun worship applauds in the Rig-Vega.

Pre-Classical Period

This yoga was recorded in the Upanishads, 200 scriptures, which explain the connection between God (Brahma) and the soul (Atma). This period likewise marks the intro of Gautama Buddha to yoga, where he established the idea of meditation in yoga practices. The Bhagavad Gita, a compilation of 18 chapters and over 700 verses, which appeared during 500 B.C., also mentions the ancient history of yoga. According to the web site, Bhagavad Gita, there are 3 paths as specified by yoga postures and laid out in the holy book: the yoga of best devotion (Bhakti yoga), the yoga of perfect expertise (Jnana yoga), and the yoga of best actions (Karma yoga). Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, author of Bhagavata Purana notes that these three courses are discussed in chapter 6 of the Gita, entitled The Science of Self-Realization.

Classical Period

The first organized discussion of useful yoga is outlined in Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras, and it’s called the most definitive deal with Ashtanga yoga, which is equated as eight limbs of yoga. Researchers on the web site, Discover Yoga Online think that from around 500 A.D. to 1500 A.D., a number of yoga educators started to develop ashrams and sanghas, or neighborhoods, to focus solely on teaching yoga in its totality– poses, meditation and breathing techniques– to change an individual and extremely spiritual movement into a more collective one.

Modern Era or Post Classical Yoga

Indian yoga professional and teacher, Swami Vivekananda is credited with introducing yoga to the West in the late 19th century. In the last 100 years, there’s actually been a spurt of Asian instructors who’ve brought various yoga practices into the west, including Bikram yoga, Hatha yoga, Zen yoga, Tantric yoga and Kundalini Yoga. While the postures share a common root, the practice frequently differs and they’re carried out in various conditions, such as in a heated space for Bikram yoga.