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The Top Ten Famous Yoga Masters

Yoga originated in ancient India, initially focusing on achieving physical and mental balance through meditation, breathing exercises, and religious rituals. Over time, different schools of yoga developed within the Indian context. In the early 20th century, yoga gained attention in the West when Indian yogi Swami Vivekananda introduced it globally. Today, yoga has become a worldwide fitness and lifestyle practice, emphasizing physical flexibility, strength, mental calmness, and inner balance. Yoga includes postures, breath control, meditation, and mindfulness, helping individuals find harmony in the modern world.

This article primarily introduces ten yoga masters who have had a significant impact on modern yoga.

 1.Patanjali      300 Bc.


Also called Gonardiya or Gonikaputra, was a Hindu author, mystic and philosopher.


He holds a pivotal position in the history of yoga, having authored the "Yoga Sutras," which initially endowed yoga with a comprehensive system of theory, cognition, and practice. Patanjali established an integrated yoga system, laying the foundation for the entire yogic framework. Patanjali defined the purpose of yoga as teaching how to control the mind (CHITTA). Consequently, he is revered as the founder of yoga.


Yoga was elevated to a scientific status for the first time in human history under his guidance, as he transformed religion into a pure science of principles. His role in the dissemination and development of yoga has been significant, and from his time to the present day, people have continually interpreted the "Yoga Sutras" that he wrote.


2.Swami Sivananda  1887-1963

He is a yoga master, spiritual guide in Hinduism, and a proponent of Vedanta. Before embracing spiritual pursuits, he served as a physician for several years in British Malaya.

He was the founder of the Divine Life Society (DLS) in 1936, Yoga-Vedanta Forest Academy (1948) and author of over 200 books on yoga, Vedanta, and a variety of subjects.


Sivananda Yoga emphasizes five principles: proper exercise, proper breathing, proper relaxation, proper diet, and meditation. In the traditional yoga practice, one begins with the Sun Salutation before engaging in the physical postures. Breathing exercises or meditation are performed using the Lotus Pose. A significant rest period is required after each practice.


3.Tirumalai Krishnamacharya 1888 - 1989


He was an Indian yoga teacher, ayurvedic healer and scholar. He is seen as one of the most important gurus of modern yoga,[3] and is often called "Father of Modern Yoga" for his wide influence on the development of postural yoga.Like earlier pioneers influenced by physical culture such as Yogendra and Kuvalayananda, he contributed to the revival of hatha yoga.[

Krishnamacharya's students included many of yoga's most renowned and influential teachers: Indra Devi; K. Pattabhi Jois ; B. K. S. Iyengar ; his son T. K. V. Desikachar ; Srivatsa Ramaswami ; and A. G. Mohan . Iyengar, his brother-in-law and founder of Iyengar Yoga, credits Krishnamacharya with encouraging him to learn yoga as a boy in 1934.


4.Indra Devi 1899-2002



Eugenie Peterson (Latvian: Eiženija Pētersone, Russian: Евгения Васильевна Петерсон; 22 May, 1899 – 25 April 2002), known as Indra Devi, was a pioneering teacher of yoga as exercise, and an early disciple of the "father of modern yoga", Tirumalai Krishnamacharya.

She has made significant contributions to the popularization and promotion of yoga in China, the United States, and South America.

Her books advocating yoga for stress relief, earned her the nickname "first lady of yoga". Her biographer, Michelle Goldberg, wrote that Devi "planted the seeds for the yoga boom of the 1990s".[4]




 5.Shri K Pattabhi Jois  1915 - 2009 


He was an Indian yoga guru, who developed and popularized the flowing style of yoga as exercise known as Ashtanga vinyasa yoga.[a][4] In 1948, Jois established the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute[5] in Mysore, India. Pattabhi Jois is one of a short list of Indians instrumental in establishing modern yoga as exercise in the 20th century, along with B. K. S. Iyengar, another pupil of Krishnamacharya in Mysore.

He is one of the most prominent disciples of Krishnamacharya, often referred to as the "Father of Modern Yoga." He played a significant role in the dissemination of yoga. With the introduction of Ashtanga Yoga to the West, various yoga styles such as Vinyasa and Power Yoga emerged, making Ashtanga Yoga a source of inspiration for modern yoga styles.

6.BKS Iyengar  1918 - 2014 

Bellur Krishnamachar Sundararaja Iyengar (14 December 1918 – 20 August 2014) was an Indian teacher of yoga and author. He is the founder of the style of yoga as exercise, known as "Iyengar Yoga", and was considered one of the foremost yoga gurus in the world.[1][2][3] He was the author of many books on yoga practice and philosophy including Light on Yoga, Light on Pranayama, Light on the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, and Light on Life. Iyengar was one of the earliest students of Tirumalai Krishnamacharya, who is often referred to as "the father of modern yoga".[4] He has been credited with popularizing yoga, first in India and then around the world.


7.Paramhansa Swami Satyananda Saraswati 


He was the Founder of the Bihar School of Yoga. He's one of the great Masters of the 20th Century who brought forth a large body of hidden yogic knowledge and practices from ancient practices, into the light of the modern mind. His system is now adopted worldwide.

He was a student of Sivananda Saraswati, the founder of the Divine Life Society, and founded the Bihar School of Yoga in 1964.[1] He wrote over 80 books, including the popular 1969 manual Asana Pranayama Mudra Bandha.

8.Maharishi Mahesh Yoga  1918-2008

He is an Indian yoga guru renowned for inventing and popularizing transcendental meditation, earning titles such as Maharishi and Yogiraj. After obtaining a degree in physics from Allahabad University in 1942, he became the assistant and disciple of Brahmananda Saraswati, the leader of the Jyotirmath in the Indian Himalayas, playing a crucial role in shaping his philosophical thoughts. In 1955, Maharishi began introducing his ideas to the world, commencing global lecture tours in 1958.

He trained over forty thousand teachers of transcendental meditation, establishing thousands of teaching centers and hundreds of schools. In the late 1960s and early 1970s, he taught notable public figures like The Beatles and the Beach Boys. In 1992, he founded the Natural Law Party, engaging in electoral campaigns in numerous countries. In 2000, he established the nonprofit organization Global Country of World Peace to further promote his ideals.


9.Bikram Choudhury1944-   


Born in Kolkata, India, and holding American citizenship, he is a yoga teacher known for founding Bikram Yoga. The yoga postures are primarily derived from the Hatha Yoga tradition. He is the creator of Hot Yoga, where practitioners typically engage in yoga training in a heated room, usually around 40 °C (104 °F).



Swami Ramdev is a renowned yoga guru in the world, the founder of Pranayama Yoga, and one of the highly acclaimed yoga teachers globally. His Pranayama Yoga advocates defeating diseases through the power of breath, and through dedicated efforts, he has demonstrated that Pranayama Yoga is a natural therapy for various physical and mental ailments. His classes attract a massive audience, with over 85 million people tuning in through television, videos, and other mediums. Additionally, his yoga classes are offered free of charge.



Yoga has brought us health, and we are deeply grateful for the exploration and dedication of the various individuals in the field of yoga. Salute to them!


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Post time: Mar-01-2024