Who We Are
The American Yoga Association is a nonprofit, federally tax-exempt, educational organization. Our goal is to provide the highest quality Yoga instruction and educational resources to anyone interested in Yoga. Besides serving as a reliable resource for Yoga students and teachers who have questions and concerns, we also provide educational services to program developers in various health-related fields, and journalists preparing articles and special reports on Yoga-related topics.
The American Yoga Association has taught Yoga consistently and reliably for over thirty years, and has gained a reputation as one of the most respected Yoga schools in the country. The special program "Easy Does it Yoga" for seniors or the physically challenged has earned wide respect for its safety, ease of instruction, adaptability, and effectiveness in helping older adults maintain or regain independence in their later years.
The Association teaches a comprehensive and balanced program of Yoga that includes the Hatha Yoga exercises and breathing techniques as well as meditation and basic theoretical studies. Rather than stressing physical culture for its own sake, our core curriculum acknowledges the deeper possibilities of Yoga by teaching meditation and by encouraging the inner-directed awareness that eventually leads to greater self-knowledge. This reliance on individual experience and feeling is a central theme in the science of Yoga, and it underlies the philosophical system of Kashmir Shaivism, which supports our line of teaching.
Pictured above are Alice Christensen (left), and the two great Yoga masters responsible for her studies, Lakshmanjoo Raina of Kashmir (center) and Rama of Haridwar and Kashmir (right). The high quality of the instructional programs and materials of the American Yoga Association is the direct result of the commitment of these three great teachers to the principles and standards of Yoga education and ethics. It is due to their conscientious efforts that we are able to convey the essence of Yoga philosophy in a manner that is nonreligious, educational, and sensitive to the particular needs of Americans.
Alice Christensen stands out as a Yoga teacher with the rare ability to make the often-complex ideas and techniques of Yoga accessible to our Western outlook and lifestyle. She established the American Yoga Association in 1968, then the first and only nonprofit organization in the United States dedicated to education in Yoga.
She has consistently presented Yoga in a clear, classical manner for over forty years. She presents Yoga without dogma or prescription, as a potent avenue for individual inquiry. She has designed programs of Yoga that can be used to enhance any lifestyle. Whether the goal is to maintain health or to explore the nature of the self, her teachings can be used to achieve a wide range of goals.
To read the first installment of Rama's autobiography, A Bunch of Reminiscences, click here.
Return to Contents Page