Kim is trained in the Kripalu and Pranakriya yoga traditions, both of which have a much lesser emphasis on the various flow vinyasa practices currently popular in the United States.
The Legacy of Swami Kripalu
Both Pranakriya yoga and Kripalu yoga are based on the original teachings of Swami Shri Kripaluvananda (1913-1981). Affectionately known as Bapuji, Swami Shri Kripaluvananda was a renunciate Kundalini yoga master who came to the United States from India in 1977 after receiving several invitations from his disciple, Amrit Desai (1932- ). Swami Kripalu chose to remain with Desai and his followers for the next four years, directly teaching a small number of Desai’s disciples while also making weekly appearances within a growing Kripalu community. He remained in the U.S. with Desai’s Kripalu community until September 27, 1981. With his health deteriorating, he chose to return to India, and he passed away on December 29, 1981.
Muktidam, Swami Kripalu’s residency while in the US, is located in Sumneytown, PA and is preserved and maintained by the Kripaluvananda Yoga Institute (KYI). Read a very brief biography of Swami Kripalu and learn more about KYI.
Read a more in-depth history of Kripalu yoga and the current Kripalu Center located in Stockbridge, MA.
View an in-depth explanation about Yoganand Michael Carroll’s Prankriya yoga philosophy and how the Pranakriya practice includes Swami Kripalu’s valuable and lost teachings.
Kripalu yoga was formed and developed by Amrit Desai (1932- ) in the early- to mid-1960s under the guidance of Swami Kripalu after he had a direct experience of spontaneous bodily movement through yoga postures without direction from his mind. This profound experience transformed Desai and moved him to teach.
Kripalu yoga is based in the tantric hatha yoga traditions and is seen as a unique way to integrate body, mind, and spirit through the
Kripalu yoga takes the practitioner through three stages:
- Stage 1 (emphasis: willful movement, body, and breath awareness) begins with an experiential approach to understanding the details of alignment and the coordination of breath while moving in and out of postures.
- Stage 2 (emphasis: holding the posture, inner focus, and concentration) involves focusing attention on inner sensations, thoughts,
andemotions. The practitioner learns to hold the postures for longer periods of time while cultivating compassion and awareness.
- Stage 3 (emphasis: “meditation-in-motion,” absorption) is a unique and personal expression of Kripalu Yoga. It is the practice of moving in response to one’s own bodily wisdom, with postures flowing from one into the next without conscious thought. This experience is often described as a state of prayer expressed by movement.