After hours spent scouring Amazon, I found 10 of the top yoga books for you to consider adding to your collection. Because whether you’re looking to get through a yoga sequence or refine your technique, it can be nice to have a read on hand. No matter if you’re a total beginner or an advanced practitioner, these are the ones that you should add to your library right here and now.
Top 10 best yoga books in the UK 2021
Here are our top 10 best yoga books for you to expand your practice.
1. The Yoga Beginner’s Bible
If you want to do a little homework before hitting your first yoga class, check out “The Yoga Beginner’s Bible.” This book features clear illustrations of poses to know and instructions on how to do each one. If you’re not as bendy as you would like to be (yet), the pages include creative modifications that you can use in class (your teacher will be able to provide more of these too, so don’t be afraid to ask). An added bonus: This book also lays out breathing exercises, which are key to your practice.
2. LIGHT ON YOGA
Iyengar sets out the postures, breath work, and mindfulness essential to a yoga practice. It’s comprehensive, and it includes hundreds of images of the physical postures, as well as instructions for pranayama (breath work) to marry breath, mind, and body. Note that the images here will be intimidating for beginners—it’s intimidating to me as an advanced yoga practitioner—and Iyengar himself is hypermobile. Consider the images templates from which to work, as opposed to the be-all, end-all.
3. Yoga: Relaxation, Postures, Daily Routines
This is no doubt one of the best yoga books for beginners, thanks to the introduction that it gives to each of the main yoga traditions, starting with the ancient discipline that began in India over 5,000 years ago.
It includes practical photography in a step-by-step format, meaning that following this book as an inexperienced yogi is easier than ever, as you don’t have to worry about being overwhelmed by the more advanced poses. Even when you do decide to try them, you’ll be able to do so with confidence!
4. Insight Yoga by Sarah Powers
Beautifully laid out, this synthesis of wisdom traditions is filled with a generous amount of information, photos and insights. Sarah’s description of meridian theory and how it so beautifully connects with yoga practice is unique and refreshing.
The book’s main focus is on yin yoga, and Sarah offers a number of yoga sequences that are designed to pressurize certain meridians and help heal specific organs, while dividing each yoga practice into a long and short version so you can more easily adapt them to your schedule. She completes this wonderfully written book with seated pranayama practices, basic Buddha dharma and suggested mindfulness meditations.
5. Bringing Yoga to Life
Internationally renowned and bestselling author Donna Farhi moves yoga practice beyond the mat into our everyday lives, restoring the tradition’s intended function as a complete, practical philosophy for daily living.
Expanding upon the teachings of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras, the core text of the yoga tradition, Donna Farhi describes yoga’s transforming power as a complete life practice, far beyond its common reduction to mere exercise routine or stress management. This is the philosophy of yoga as a path to a deeper awareness of self. Drawing upon her years of teaching with students, Farhi guides readers through all the pitfalls and promises of navigating a spiritual practice.
6. Science of Yoga
The benefits of yoga cannot be refuted, but many of these are explained from a spiritual or energetic perspective. For instance, not everyone believes in Chakras or vibrations.
By learning about the science behind yoga, readers will get to understand the benefits of yoga from a secular, non-spiritual and objective point of view. I think this is a very powerful thing to possess, not just for your personal practice, but also when sharing yoga with others. You would be able to connect better to different people, especially those require ‘hard’ evidence about yoga and its benefits.
7. Yoga and the Luminous: Patañjali’s Spiritual Path to Freedom
Christopher Chapple is an Indologist and yoga scholar who is a professor at Loyola Marymount University in California. This book compiles several essays he wrote about the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali and also includes his translation of the sutras.
While no translation can be truly unbiased, this version of the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali may just be the least biased translation you will find. Many authors use the Sutras as a way to indoctrinate you into their belief system, but Christopher has done an exceptional job of presenting the text as it is, without colouring the content with ideals or intent. His translation is exceptionally clear and accessible.
8. Yoga: The Spirit and Practice of Moving Through Stillness
In this spiritual yoga guidebook, the reader is able to discover a path to inner peace using Hatha yoga. Using Yoga strategies created by author and world-renowned yoga expert Erich Shiffmann. This excellent book offers easy-to-follow techniques that help people find inner peace and the beauty in life.
This Yoga book uses simple instruction and helpful illustrations. It shows the reader over one hundred poses and routines that geared toward all levels of ability. These moves help slow or reverse aging, increase strength, and tone the body. The complete program of meditation helps promote self-realization, decreases stress, and increase creativity.
9. The Secret Power of Yoga
For anyone interested in studying yoga beyond the physical representations in a class, this is a wonderful rendition of the sutras from a heart-centered perspective. The Secret Power of Yoga is written for women, and it’s all about the emotional and spiritual benefits of yoga. In The Secret Power of Yoga, Nischala Joy Devi guides readers through exactly how to capture the spirit of each sutra. The spiritual wisdom you will gain from the guiding will weave together a beautiful tapestry of essential wisdom and insights that unify the mysteries of knowing our Divine Nature.
10. Yoga For Wellness by Gary Kraftsow
Yoga for Wellness is a book for those of you who are looking for a better understanding of basic alignment, and for those of you who are looking to build your own practice. This book also has many different practices for those who want to build more virility, or are suffering from depression. There’s more to yoga than stretching and bending and twisting.
In Yoga for Wellness, one of America’s top yoga teachers gives a clinic on the holistic nature of yoga practice, especially in regard to healing and well-being. With over a thousand photographs, Gary Kraftsow covers the basic postures, the specific movements of each posture, and how to sequence postures in a routine.
How to choose the best yoga books
Best-sellers are not necessarily the best for you
Many people refer to the best sellers list to get an idea of what they should be reading. Or sometimes they’ll just choose something at random, pick up a book and hope for the best. That’s fine for entertainment purposes, but not so much for your development.
It would better benefit us if we took the time to consciously choose what to read based on the skills we want to improve, or the mindset that we want to hone. If we don’t make that choice for ourselves, then the best sellers list will make the choice for us. The real issue here is that while we’re wasting our time reading mediocre books, we’re missing out on ones that could really benefit us or even change our lives.
Never judge a book by its cover
The book cover and the content hiding inside are two separate entities. An author could have created great content, but their book will get overlooked if the title & cover are not eye catching. On the other hand, a book might have a great cover, but the contents are just full of fillers and empty statements.
We hope that you’ve enjoyed reading our ultimate list of the best yoga books, and that you’ve found the perfect read to inspire your yoga journey!