Home' Australian Yoga Life : sample issue Contents Geeta Iyengar in Australia
gGeeta Iyengar has practised and taught
yoga all her life, in India and across the
world, under the tutelage of her
legendary father, BKS Iyengar. Given her
authority and experience, it's no wonder
that on Geeta's two previous visits to
Australia -- in 1996 and 2003 -- her
workshops were booked out. This third
visit was no different: despite the
significant price tag you'd expect for a
six-day event at the upmarket Twin
Waters resort in Maroochydore, all places
on the retreat had been filled by the close
of early bird registrations in May.
For Iyengar yoga practitioners, the
Geeta retreat was possibly a last chance
to receive the wisdom of the Iyengar
tradition directly from BKS Iyengar's
daughter. Geeta, now 65 and facing
her own health challenges, indicated
at the retreat that she will soon retire
She said it was for this reason that
her focus was strongly on teachers and
how Iyengar Yoga should be taught.
More than 60% of retreat delegates were
either certified Iyengar teachers or
teacher-trainees. The remaining delegates
-- who required a referral from their
teacher to attend -- were Iyengar students
of more than eight years' practice.
'All I want to do is more yoga'
With three sessions and up to six hours'
yoga practice each day, this was an
intense and demanding retreat that is
likely to leave its mark on yoga in
Australia and New Zealand for years to
come. One delegate summed up the
retreat's inspirational impact: "It was so
intense. I've never experienced anything
like it. It was really hard. I didn't think
I'd get through it. But now all I want to
do is more yoga!"
Practitioners, including those less
experienced, were particularly struck by
the clarity, depth and comprehensiveness
of Geeta's teaching. Her instruction
extended beyond the asanas, pranayama
and remedial teaching to include
chanting and Sanskrit pronunciation,
with frequent references to the Yoga
Sutras of Patanjali.
Geeta's emphasis on the classic
sources and ritual practices of yoga were
well received by delegates. In the 1960s
In September 348 delegates from seven countries attended a six-day
residential retreat taught by renowned Iyengar yoga teacher,
Geeta Iyengar, daughter of revered yoga master BKS Iyengar.
Former Iyengar teacher Michael Hollingworth attended the first two days
of the Queensland retreat and interviewed Geeta Iyengar for AY L .
Open your toes, open your mind.
australian yoga life • december-february 2010
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