Yoga Practice was seen as having three facets:

Firstly Yoga Practice as a tool for Power -

Yoga practice can be used to link the body and the mind
through āsana and prāṇāyāma. It is the ability to achieve something through intense physical and mental effort. The consequences are power over and within the body and the mind.

As such, Yoga practice can be seen here as an art and offers a fascinating and helpful pursuit for many people looking to develop and refine these qualities. Traditionally this aspect is only a means towards a more important goal.

Secondly Yoga Practice as a tool for Self Reflection -

Yoga practice can be used as a tool for a deeper understanding
of ourselves by inquiring both into and beyond what we view as the everyday self, its actions and its motives. Here Yoga can be utilised as meditation to appreciate and sustain a quality of attention. With a more sensitive and consistent attention we can lessen the effects of our conditionings.

As a consequence we can experience a deeper sense of well being and have the potential for action with greater awareness within our life, work and relationships. Yet we all experience problems, poor health or illness from time to time.

Thirdly Yoga Practice as a tool for Therapeutic Treatment -

Yoga practice as a restorative, support and preventative
, can be a healing therapy to help us work at changing or anticipating the effects of problems and illness in our lives. Here the approach must be different for each person as our potential to practice Yoga will be affected by the problem, or the problem by our attitude towards working with it.

Utilising Yoga concepts it is possible, within a careful group Yoga class or individual Yoga lesson teaching situation, to introduce Yoga practices that both respect the problems or illness and support our intention to reduce their negative effects in the future. Also according to traditional Indian medicine those diseases that are chronic and cannot be cured by medicine alone can also be helped by using Yoga techniques. So Yoga can be used as a support alongside other forms of treatment.

However, practicing Yoga as a therapy also presumes that we are willing to accept responsibility for making changes within our own situation.

The patient must be his own doctor, must observe himself,
use his own intelligence, and find the right tools.
Fundamentally, the solution is in the patient’s discernment.
No one can understand for the patient.“
TKV Desikachar

These three aspects of Yoga practice as, power, self-inquiry and therapy are mutually supportive in helping to maintain physical health, psychological vitality and spiritual purpose within the commitment and challenges of life, work and relationships.

This approach to teaching Yoga according to different needs and situations has long been referred to as ‘Viniyoga‘.

"Yoga is a mystery. It does not mean the same thing to each and everyone.
In spite of the vast field it covers from curing chronic ailments,
to extra-sensory perception, etc, hardly anyone is able to define it in simple terms.

Where is then the hope of experiencing its true significance?
What about the risks of inappropriate use of Yoga methods and practices?
Why are so many people all over the world taking the word
and the substance of Yoga so lightly, so ridiculously?

Like everything,
Yoga must be presented intelligently.
It should be spoken of carefully and offered according to
the aspiration, requirement and the culture of the individual.

This should be done in stages.
Systematic application of Yoga,
- be it concerned with physical exercises, deep breathing,
relaxation, meditation, lifestyle, food, studies - is the need of the day.
This I believe - is what the word
viniyoga represents."
TKV Desikachar

So actually this is not Viniyoga but the viniyoga of Yoga, it is the systematic application (viniyoga) of Yoga, be it concerned with physical exercises, deep breathing, relaxation, meditation, lifestyle, food, studies, according to the person and their current situation, and would be a truer way to describe how Practitioners trained in this particular Yoga teaching methodology work.

The main aim is to apply Yoga according to the individual and their situation, through respecting differences in age, gender, mental and physical health, lifestyle, occupation and interest, together with the persons needs and circumstances.

  • Care has been taken to try to preserve the spirit of these Yoga teachings which focus on:

  • The Adaptation of the Yoga practice to suit our needs and potential, integrating Yoga postures with breath and attention, for better physical and mental health.

  • A process that moves from teaching a Yoga practice adapted to our starting point towards exploring our inner potential.

  • The primary use of Yoga breathing techniques to influence a person's mental and physical well being.

  • The importance of the relationship between the Yoga student and their Yoga practice.

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