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Kripalu Yoga

Kripalu yoga is an exercise system that uses yoga and medititation to encourage the flow of energy throughout the body. This form of yoga uses asana, pranayama and meditation in an effort to generate internal awareness of the flow of participants' "prana" (life force energy) throughout their bodies. This form of yoga consists of three stages of practice that are designed to release prana: asanas that are held for a short period of time to focus on proper alignment and deep breathing; asanas that are held for longer periods of time to allow for a greater awareness of the sensations that are being felt in the body; and a meditative stages, in which participants are expected to use their intuition and the flow of prana to guide their bodies. Beginner kripalu yoga classes focus on the first stage to familiarize participants with the practice, while more advanced classes incorporate all three stages of practice. Like other forms of yoga that have grown in global popularity, it has become increasingly available as a commercialized form of exercise and now carries diverse meanings, both spiritual and secular, in various communities - although, kripalu yoga retains an explicit spiritual emphasis.

Is this activity known by any other names?


What are the origins of the activity abroad and in Canada?

Yoga is estimated to originate during 5th Century BCE, as part of Hinduism and Buddhism, and was introduced to Europe and North American by Indian yoga gurus during the early 20th century. Kripalu yoga was developed in the 1980s and has gained widespread global popularity, including in Canada and the GTA.

Who takes part?

Males and females of diverse ages and ethnocultural backgrounds.

When does it occur / How often do you take part?

Kripalu yoga occurs year round during regular classes in the GTA.

Are there any organized clubs, groups, organizations or leagues?

Sunlilyoga; Yoga Pranayam Centre

Cultural Significance

Historically, yoga has significant cultural significance in Buddhism and Hinduism. Today, yoga has become a popular mainstream form of exercise that may or may not carry spiritual significance, although kripalu yoga has an explicit spiritual emphasis.

Is there anything else we should know?



Exercise System
  • Yoga Pranayam Centre
    348 Danforth Ave, suite #211
    Toronto, ON M4K 1P1
  • Sunlilyoga
    10030 Yonge St.
    Richmond Hill, ON L4C 1T8

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