Ashtanga's Parampara system

Dear Yogis

This weekend I’m attending Led Primary Series practice with Sharath Jois. He is the member of the Jois family who inherited the Ashtanga Shala of Mysore (Shri K. Pattabhi Jois Ashtanga Yoga Institute (KPJAYI)) and therefore its history and its list of authorised teachers. Some call him Sharathji and revere him as the lineage holder of Asthanga Yoga. His official website uses the word Paramaguru. This is because he follows Parampara – he is the follower of a lineage. (It is the Indian yoga institutions that honoured him with the Paramaguru status.)

The Parampara system is where knowledge is passed down from teacher to student... eternally. Sharath can look up through his immediate ancestors and see his mother, his uncle and grandfather as his immediate influencers. He took yoga seriously from 19-years-old when he started assisting his grandfather, Sri K Pattabhi Jois. Sharath’s mother is Saraswathi Rangaswamy, daughter of Pattabhi Jois. She learnt from her father from 10-years-old who, in turn, studied with his teacher, Tirumalai Krishnamacharya (‘inventor of modern yoga’), from the age of 12 for almost three decades. Krishnamacharya’s teacher was a yoga master who lived in the Himalayas. Pretty cool, eh. It’s all about keeping a line of knowledge continuous, constant, uninterrupted.  

Here’s an interview with Sharath by Kino Macgregor about his book which came out this year.


It feels like ages since we had a night-time moon in London and I long for my Kapsali moon over the bay, kept company my the star of Venus. It feels like heaven shines on Kapsali. I think it does!  Why don’t you come on our magical Kapsali Yoga retreat, September 21st? It’s now being advertised on Book Yoga Retreats to a worldwide audience. I’m excited to see who will join us. One of our excursions on the island will be to Sara’s herbal apothecary. Take a look at some of her inspiring remedies. She has creams for knee problems! I bought the Tendonitis Cream for my tricky knee which has an ingredient ‘Devil’s Claw’. She has anti-aging cream... I probably need more of that. It’s a beautiful shop and she gives us a talk on herbal remedies and answers our many and various questions.

Home Studio

I was badly delayed yesterday and had to cancel the evening Ashtanga-based class. I’ll replace it with a class tonight at 7.00. Let me know if you’d like to come. There are plenty of spaces in the classes next week. The latest availability is attached to this email.


Charlie Merton will be at Triyoga Ealing on July 19th with her gongs of joy! I’ve booked the workshops taught by Beryl Bender Birch, September 13th – 15th at Triyoga Soho.

Yoga in the News

The Evening Standard has Where to find the best outdoor yoga classes in London this summer – always good to see at this time of year. The article features Peckham, The O2, St Pauls, Belgravia, and Canary Wharf.

BBC News has: St Edmundsbury Cathedral yoga experience 'boosts wellbeing'. "A man who was inspired to start fitness classes while homeless has set up a yoga session at a cathedral.” What an inspiration!

Hong Kong Tatler has: These Are The World's Most Expensive Yoga Mats. They start at US$15,000! Third on the list is Liforme and Burberry at £300. How uninspiring!