Best Books On Yoga To Go Beyond The Mat
Looking for more out of your yoga practice?
Movement based yoga practices give us a glimpse into the power of the ancient, beautiful practice of yoga, but yoga goes so much deeper than this. In this post, you’ll find 5 of the best books on yoga to help you to go beyond your mat so you can experience the depths of what this practice has to offer.
About This Yoga Book List
Below I’ve compiled a diverse selection of yoga books that cater to practitioners of all levels.
These recommendations are valuable resources for both yoga teachers seeking profound inspiration for their classes and students eager to deepen their understanding of this magnificent practice. The suggested books encompass a wide range of subjects, from classic yogic texts to the explorations of chakras & mantras.
Additionally, I’ve included a book that delves into the postures of movement-based yoga practices with a profound and meaningful perspective.
My intention is that these books will accompany you on your yoga and spiritual journey, providing you with valuable insights and guidance along the way.
And here is your list on the best books on yoga! Derived from my experience as a yoga teacher & my reading experience. 🙂
5 Best Books On Yoga
Dive Deeper Into Your Practice
1. The Yoga Sutras of Patangali
Translation & Commentary By: Sri Swami Satchidananda
I figured we’d begin our exploration with a timeless classic that was written approximately 2000 years ago.
This profound text gathered the wisdom of yogic teachings from that era and distilled them into concise sutras. Sutras are brief, profound statements written in Sanskrit, encapsulating deep wisdom.
This book serves as a guide, unraveling these sutras and providing the author’s interpretations to aid in understanding their significance.
For a more profound experience, you can engage in a mantra practice with these sutras and allow them to resonate within you to uncover their personal meaning.
This book truly encompasses the essence of yoga. It’s not one to be devoured in a single reading session; instead, it’s best savored slowly, spending ample time with each sutra before moving forward to the next, allowing the wisdom to permeate your being.
2. Wheels of Life
Written By: Anodea Judith
Among the plethora of books available on the chakra system, this particular gem holds a special place in my heart.
It gracefully illuminates each energy center, providing profound insights as well as practical yoga poses aimed at restoring balance to these energetic areas.
In the contemporary landscape, chakras have gained significant popularity within various energetic practices. Yet, it’s crucial to recognize their ancient origins. The earliest recorded mention of chakras can be traced back to the Vedas, the world’s most ancient spiritual texts and the very source of yoga’s traditions.
It’s for this reason that I include this book on our list of the best yoga books. Delving into the chakras helps you gain a deeper understanding of your body beyond the realm of the physical. This book serves as a powerful tool for exploring these energetic pathways and unlocking the profound wisdom they hold.
3. Myths of the Asanas
Written By: Alanna Kaivalya & Arjuna van der Kooij
If you find joy in practices like vinyasa yoga, then this book is sure to captivate your interest. It takes a delightful plunge into the enchanting myths and profound symbolism underlying our beloved yoga poses.
Within it’s pages, you’ll uncover the fascinating stories behind postures such as Warrior Pose, Fish Pose, and many more, helping you to gain a deeper appreciation for their significance.
This book not only offers an intriguing learning experience, but also holds the potential to elevate your yoga practice to new heights. By understanding the deeper meanings embedded within yoga poses, you can unlock additional benefits from these postures.
Instead of merely practicing Eagle Pose (Garudasana) for balance and flexibility, you can embrace the story of Garuda and connect with a deeper essence that this pose imparts. It reminds us that we are spiritual beings embarking on a human journey, inviting us to tap into our spiritual selves.
This book is a gateway to help take your movement based yoga practice to the next level.
4. The Bhagavad Gita
Introduced & Translated By: Eknath Easwaran
This book not only serves as a vital source of information on yoga, but it also holds the distinction of being the most widely read spiritual book in the world! Isn’t that amazing?
This book is a dialogue between Arjuna and Krishna. Set on a battlefield, the Gita explores profound themes surrounding the nature of existence and offers guidance regarding the quest for spiritual enlightenment.
In terms of yoga, the Gita explores various yogic paths, including Karma Yoga (path of selfless action), Bhakti Yoga (path of devotion), and Jnana Yoga (path of knowledge).
The Bhagavad Gita presents timeless teachings that offer insights into self-discovery, inner peace, and the pursuit of higher consciousness.
5. Sacred Sound
Written By: Alanna Kaivalya
I absolutely love the practice of mantra and kirtan so it’s no surprise that this one is on my book list. Your voice is a tool that can help you break through barriers and reach higher states of consciousness.
Whether you choose to sing, speak, or silently repeat mantras, the power of mantra should not be underestimated. This book specifically focuses on mantras from the Vedic tradition. The Vedas are the world’s most ancient spiritual texts and they also happen to be the source of yoga’s traditions.
Within the pages of this book, you’ll be introduced to Sanskrit mantras, each accompanied by an explanation of their meanings. Similar to the yoga sutras, this is not a book to be rushed through, but rather one to be actively engaged with.
The author goes the extra mile by providing audio files on her website, allowing you to access the correct pronunciation of the mantras featured in the book.
By immersing yourself in the teachings of this book and incorporating a mantra practice into your life, you can tap into the transformative energy that these sacred sounds hold.
The books recommended on this ‘best books on yoga’ list offer gateways to venture into the realms of philosophy, spirituality, and self-discovery.
These books can help you to discover that yoga is not limited to physical postures, but encompasses a profound tapestry of teachings and practices that can enrich every aspect of our lives.
Whether you’re a dedicated practitioner or a curious beginner, these books will serve as trusted companions, guiding you on a path of self-realization, connection, and inner growth.
So, step off your mat, dive into the wisdom of these extraordinary texts, and allow them to elevate your yoga journey to new levels!