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Yoga Anatomy
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Yoga Anatomy

4.17 of 5 stars 4.17  ·  rating details  ·  2,401 ratings  ·  112 reviews
See inside every yoga pose! With clear, expert instruction and full-color, detailed anatomical drawings, Yoga Anatomy depicts the most common asanas to provide a deeper understanding of the structures and principles underlying each movement and of yoga itself.

From breathing to standing poses, see how each muscle is used, how slight alterations of a pose can enhance or redu
Paperback, 1st edition, 221 pages
Published July 1st 2007 by Human Kinetics Publishers (first published 2007)
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Jenny G
Sep 24, 2012 Jenny G rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: geeks
Shelves: bed-time-stories
I can barely begin to describe how happy this book makes me.
My mom was a nurse, and I spent hours of my childhood pouring over her Anatomy books.
So to find a book of see-through people doing my other favorite thing, yoga?
To integrate these drawings and visualize what my body is doing as I strike a pose?
Hot damn! Why, that's better than peanut butter and chocolate!
or chocolate and potato chips! or anything with caramel!

I will die happy and limber.
Mo Tipton
If you already have a good understanding of anatomy, you will probably love this book. I found the introductory chapters on the breath and the spine to be quite fascinating and useful in my practice, but in the breakdown of the poses, I started to get confused. The text references numerous muscles that are not labeled, which made me lose context rather quickly.

After a few more occurrences of this, I finally gave up, because I was having such a hard time following what was being said. I suppose
I guess I’m one of those people that likes to understand the how and why of everything I do. Therefore, whenever I workout, I find myself wondering about the purpose of each particular exercise. Am I actually working, strengthen, or stretching my muscles in a way that is beneficial to my body or am I just wasting my time? Am I doing the exercises correctly or am I setting myself up for an injury? Perhaps that’s why I love the Anatomy series from Human Kinetics. They have a number of different bo ...more
Sep 26, 2009 Yuki rated it 1 of 5 stars
Shelves: health
For a yoga anatomy book, I expected to learn proper alignment and details of challenges to getting into the poses. Instead, I found the book just listing muscles that are involved in the pose with the diagram. I was not impressed.
T.L. Cooper
Yoga Anatomy by Leslie Kaminoff discusses yoga's effect on the body and the body's effect on yoga. Kaminoff starts by explaining the dynamics of breathing and of yoga breath. This section alone is worth the cost of the book! I noticed an immediate improvement in my breathing during yoga poses and therefore an improvement in the poses after reading the section on breathing. Yoga Anatomy then goes on to show yoga poses from an anatomical view highlighting the parts of the body that should be worki ...more
Victoria Klein
(Worth noting: this review is based on the reading from the 1st edition of this book. Kaminoff recently released a 2nd updated version with expanded introductory chapters that I haven’t had the pleasure of reading yet.)

This is a spectacular book – if you already know a hefty amount of anatomy. If your knowledge on anatomy is slim, this is still an exceptionally useful book, but it can also be overwhelming.

Anatomy pro or no, the introductory chapters set a wonderful foundation for understanding t
This is a pretty solid anatomy guide for anyone that practices yoga and wants to understand the poses - what the muscles are doing, what the joints are doing, how your body is affected by stretching/pulling/breathing.
The illustrations are great, highlighting the primary muscles involved, showing how the weight should be distributed and what's anatomically going on.
I do love the explanations for each asana, how different movements change the focus and stresses on the system, and I really like th
I love trying to say all the names Sanskrit. And then remenbering how to say them later in the studio :)
Leslie Kaminoff's Yoga Anatomy is a fantastic reference and guide to the way the body moves during yoga. The drawings are incredibly detailed and really help to increase understanding of how each pose works. The introductory sections on breathing and the spine are clearly written and really helpful for comprehending how breathing functions and how the spine develops and moves. The remainder of the book is organized by categories of postures: standing, sitting, kneeling, supine, prone, and arm su ...more
Loved this book. It is required reading for my yoga teacher training and just finished it today, but will often be going back and rereading. It is interesting to learn all the anatomy and I loved the clear pictures. Also the book provides the names in Sanskrit, what the pose works, obstacles, variations and the breathing in each pose. I also especially enjoyed the chapter just on breathing. I find how the body works kind of fascinating.
Tara Tierney
This was assigned to me as a required resource for Shala, and I credit it for my passing of instructor training today! :) The breadth & depth of the material is amazing. It reflects so much care, work and attentiveness to detail. It really is anatomy for yogis. First of all, the illustrations are absolutely crystal clear (the amazing artist, Sharon Ellis, is a medical illustrator). The drawings show exactly what your muscles and bones are doing in each pose. The coolest part is that we get t ...more
Marko Santos
It's refreshing to see a book about Yoga without the spiritual mumbo jumbo so common in Yoga literature. And I ask forgiveness and compassion if offend any of you who take this stuff seriously.

This book is mostly "technical" with names of muscles, bones and organs, mostly muscles. At the beginning explains interesting facts about the mechanics of breath and the spines. Then it goes through a series of poses with information about the pose's name, classification, muscles and other parts of the b
Faye Rahman
A must have for yogis. A handy guide for lovers, practitioners and teachers of yoga. Great illustration and a detailed description on each poses leaving you with a more in depth understanding of the poses. Good for every level of practitioners.
Carrie Horak
I haven't actually started looking through this yet. I would like to see how learning more about the muscles in play in my yoga practice would benefit it (perhaps just mentally or perhaps physically understanding a pose better). We shall see!
Keith Kendall
This book is as technical as an anatomy book. It has been a long time since I read with a highlighter in hand. I used that highlighter a lot.There is a lot of detail that will require multiple readings to fully understand. I see why this book is so immensely popular. ...more
Mark Johnson
Pretty good, nice illustrations. The mismatch between the labeled muscles in the illustrations and in the lists under each pose was a bit confusing. Still, pretty cool just to see the relationships.
Dina Begum
Buku ini tetap menambah wawasanku walaupun aku sudah berlatih yoga selama bertahun-tahun. Sekarang latihan jadi semakin 'ngeh' karena terbayang otot mana yang sedang bekerja saat melakukan pose-pose.

Ada bagian 'Hambatan dan catatan' pada setiap pose yang memberi petunjuk masalah apa saja yang mungkin timbul saat seseorang melakukannya, sekaligus petunjuk bagaimana cara mengatasinya. Top markotop deh.

Asiknya lagi, buku ini juga bisa dibaca seperti kamus yang bisa langsung dibaca di bagian mana a
Josie Sanderson
Very informative. I learned exactly which muscles are used and stretched in each yoga pose.
William Vysniauskas
Recommended for anyone who loves exploring the human body science behind your own skin. Very helpful to understand how our body works when practicing yoga
Miter Kids
yoga is not a healthy exercise and it allows demon's into your body and soul.
Adrianne Mathiowetz
So it just struck me that it would be kind of absurd to keep this on my "currently reading" list for the years it will likely take me to actually consume all its information: but this has been great for refining poses. Every now and then I'll wonder: "wait, what is the point of this pose? where should I feel it?" and this illustrated book is an invaluable resource. Not necessarily the kind you read cover-to-cover, but pretty handy to have around -- even if the author does begin her introduction ...more
Nov 18, 2014 Juan added it
because i practic yoga
Heather Gregory
A very helpful reference.
The human body is crazy.
This was the last book assigned in my yoga teacher-training program. That's fortunate, because if I read it early my head would have exploded. This is a rich reference book I will return to constantly. Most fascinating is the story behind how each diagram was achieved. The only issue to note is that the intro chapter on breathing mechanics gets some details wrong as far as muscular anatomy is concerned (attachments and insertions of the breathing diaphragm). These errors will be corrected in the ...more
Dec 02, 2013 Lisa rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone who finds anatomy and/or yoga interesting
Recommended to Lisa by: Annette Scott
This is not necessarily a book for "pleasure" reading. However, even though it was a textbook, I really did like this book. I've always been fascinated with how the body looks on the inside. I am definitely a visual learner and this book truly helped me with my asanas. It allowed me to be able to conjure up images of tendons, muscles and ligaments in my mind's eye when I practice. I truly believe in proper alignment and this book helps me get there.
Robyn Vines Smith
This book is probably really useful for people who want to intricately study the anatomy behind yoga poses. It was way too technical for me, and therefore pretty dry. I guess I didn't exactly understand what the book was when I bought it. It just wasn't very useful for me. I wanted more tips on how to properly do poses and how to learn the more difficult one. There's a lot of good information in here for the right person.
David Haberlah
An exceptionally well integrated and informative compilation of anatomy, artful drawings, and philosophy of all key yoga poses. A must read for aspiring practitioners. The classification of poses itself based on the starting position and type of movement is very helpful in designing your own sequences.

Make sure to obtain the second edition co-authored by Amy Matthews for additional introductory chapters!
Uday Desai
In spite of some vivid weaknesses in the book, this book deserves more than five stars. The author has done some excellent and very admirable research in the effects of Yoga postures (and breathing) on human anatomy.
I liked the discussion of breathing, yogic breathing and the interpretation "sukha" and "dukkha" in terms of human anatomy, and physiology.
...i return from class every monday and thursday night and immediately find this book next to me--an excellent resource for any yoga beginner as the aurhor's words and illustrations demonstrate asanas very well. also, i appreciate the extra information shared in this text that allows me to better understand the health benefits embedded in asanas and sequences.
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“It is a fundamental fallacy to think that our human bodies work like the structures that humans have built.” 2 likes
“The conventional terms used to describe movement at the joints, joint actions, describe fairly simple movements that are flat and two-dimensional and happen in a single plane. No single joint action takes into account the volume of the movement possibilities at every joint.” 1 likes
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