“Mission to carry forward the subject of Yog through asana and pranayama as taught by Guruji BKS Iyengar”
Rajashree is the founder of Shriyog Institute in Pune, India and one of the senior disciples of Guruji BKS Iyengar. She has been trained with guruji at the Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute (RIMYI), Pune since 1993. She has been privileged to have closely worked and trained with guruji’s son Shri. Prashant Iyengar and daughter Dr. Geeta Iyengar. She started teaching at the RIMYI from 1997 and has given lectures at the Institute from 2008-2009 on beginner’s practice.
In her classes, Rajashree follows the principles of constitution, seasonal conduct and daily conduct as stated by Ayurved and spirituality on the basis of Bhagwad Geeta. The original text of Bhagwad Geeta was simplified by a saint of Maharashtra 700 years ago in his work of Dhyaneshwari. By the grace of her guru Shri. Sudhakar Lalsare, Rajeshree is working to share this knowledge too on the platform of yog. Dr David Frawleys books are a part of learning for the interested students in her center.
For Rajashree, Yog is a holistic science, asana and pranayama is the beginning of the journey taking one towards dharana and dhyana (mediatation). Her passion is to share with every person the true pulse of Yog. She considers it a blessing of her guru to be able to share this science.
Rajeshree’s Yog Journey
I was introduced to Yog at the Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute in Pune in 1993. It was the beginning of a remarkable journey ahead. The first beginner’s class was like homecoming. I felt I have reached where I belong. I graduated to the next level in 3 months and since then it was no looking back.
In 1995 I was pregnant with my first child and the pregnancy practice amazed me further as I was comfortable in the head and shoulder stand even in the 9th month. Guruji BKS Iyengar has not only invented a system with detailed instructions in asana and pranayama for the body, breath and mind but also invented props that help asana and pranayama accessible to every person in every aspect of life. I experienced just that in my initial years of learning during my pregnancy. The attention and specific instructions I received from Geetaji (Dr Geeta Iyengar) in reference to the fetus and the changing body left me in awe of the subject. It was here that I received flexibility of the body, adaptability of the mind and a feeling of total surrender to the subject. This is when I decided that I would study and prepare myself to teach the subject.
I commenced teaching in 1996 in my house garage with one student. I lived on the outskirts of Pune city so accessibility was difficult for people that made me rent a small place which started with 50 people. The teaching continued with students providing good feedback of good health and stable mind that led to various opportunities as teaching in schools, IT companies and various residential societies. The blessings from the Ramamani Institute to send people from my area to learn at my classes was a big aid. It was during that time that I got the opportunity to work with Dr Nishin Tambay M.D (sports medicine). I could understand the human anatomy to a great extent with his training but felt the lack of understanding human constitution. That opened an opportunity to learn Ayurved and so studied for a year Lifestyle Management through Yog and Ayurved. The approach to teach post understanding of Ayurved helped me teach better according to each person’s constitution and as per the mechanics of the human organs and mind. It has been a beautiful journey.
With the dedication to carry on the work forward led to Shriyog Institute in Pune, I use the combination of Yog, Ayurved and Indian Classical Music in all the classes. It is an Institute which accommodates students from ages 8 to 80. Classes are conducted specially for children, teenagers, ladies, senior citizens besides general classes and therapy classes.
I also teach in a nearby village where I get to interact with the farmer ladies where health is not a priority. This activity has been going on for the last 8 years and every class with them makes me humble and gives me the contentment and motivation to keep walking on this path. Shriyog Institute has been involved in teaching senior managers of some top automobile and IT companies in Pune besides several celebrities like ShahRukh Khan and Hritik Roshan.
As yoga has helped all the above people in their journey of life, my faith, dedication and commitment to the subject only keeps growing.