Kraftsow, Gary. Yoga for Wellness.
Gary Kraftsow, founder of the American Viniyoga Institute, teaches in the lineage of Krishnamacharya and Desikachar and is well-known in the world of yoga.
An overview with points I like or consider important:
Part I Yoga: A Developmental Approach
Chapter 1: Principles of Practice
- in discussing the form/function problem concerning the relationship between classical form and practical function of postures: "The true value of these postures lies in their functional benefit to our own body, not [emphasis mine] in the objective character of their classical form."
- a great section on why we adapt postures and various explanations and photos that illustrate adaptations
-methods of adapting the breath to "deepen the practice and produce different effects."
- information about using sound and props and on sequencing.
Chapter 2: Biomechanics of Movement
- the primary and secondary intentions of movements
- postures are discussed and there are plenty of photos that illustrate problems in postures, as well as info on common risks and sequencing
Part II Yoga Cikitsa: An Introduction to Yoga Therapy
- The orientation of tradional medicine is "to treat the disease; the Yoga orientation is to treat the person. In Yoga therapy, therefore, we are first and foremost seeking to change attitudes and actions tha inhibit the natural healing process."
- "Viyoga literally means separation. In the context of Yoga therapy, Viyoga refers to the process of separating ourselves from whatever is undesirable in our lives." It is a process of elimation and "includes letting go of unhealthy attachments, giving up self-destructive behavior, and breaking detrimental relationships."
-"Samyoga literally means linking together. In the context of Yoga therapy, Samyoga refers to the process of linking to whatever is positive and productive in our lives. It involves the development of mental qualities such as kindness, courage, patience, and compassion. It also involves establishing appropriate priorities, practicing virtues, and cultivating positive relationships."
- "Our health problems may be related to congenital factors; patterns acquired in early childhood; the result of an accident, an unhealthy lifestyle, chronic stress; or any combination of these or other factors."
The 3 chapters in Part II, deal with Common Aches and Pains, Chronic Disease, and Emotional Health. Kraftsow frequently points out that in many situations, the practitioner will need to see a doctor in order to combine the benefits of traditional medicine and Yoga. The chapters cover in some detail the various systems of the body (skeletal, muscular, digestive, respiratory, etc.) and various asana sequences developed to deal with specific problems.
This is another book that is informative on many levels. Kraftsow is thorough and the book is full of practical knowledge and inspiration. Another great reference!
Nonfiction. Yoga. 1999. 328 pages.