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Influential Yoga Teachers List

Introduction: Thought Leaders

The number of influential yoga teachers is surely countless! While there is no set criteria for the teachers on this list, our objective is to include teachers who have made an impact well beyond their own communities.

We want to make it easy for you to find information on teachers who, for instance:

    • Introduced yoga to the West or had a major influence on those who did.
    • Are widely-published, have large teacher training schools, or otherwise have had significant influence.
    • Teachers who were direct students of T. Krishnamacharya or of B.K.S. Iyengar, K. Pattabhi Jois or T.K.V. Desikachar.
    • Teachers who have developed specialized or therapeutic applications, or who have developed effective outreach programs.

We are absolutely not judging quality of teachers and we welcome your ideas for more teachers to add. Please email us with any recommendations.

See Also


Influential Teachers: Summary List

  1. Baitmangalkar, Arundhati
  2. Baptiste, Baron
  3. Bell, Baxter, MD
  4. Benagh, Barbara
  5. Bhajan, Yogi
  6. Birch, Beryl Bender
  7. Blossom, Scott
  8. Boccio, Frank Jude
  9. Bondy, Dianne
  10. Bowen, Rane
  11. Brower, Elena
  12. Brown, J.
  13. Cardoza, Nicole
  14. Carpenter, Annie
  15. Chanterrwyn, Nam
  16. Chellaram, Hersha Harilela
  17. Chinea, Constanza Eliana
  18. Choudhury, Bikram
  19. Cole, Roger
  20. Cope, Stephen
  21. Corn, Seane
  22. Costello, Nikki
  23. Crandell, Jason
  24. Dass, Ram
  25. Degener, Maris
  26. Desikachar, T.K.V.
  27. Devananda, Swami Vishnu
  28. Devi, Nischala Joy
  29. Devi, Indra
  30. Dias, Manoj
  31. Doane, Nicki
  32. Eggleston, Pamela Stokes
  33. Ezraty, Maty
  34. Farhi, Donna
  35. Farmer, Angela
  36. Feuerstein, Georg
  37. Finger, Alan
  38. Flynn, Dana Trixie
  39. Folan, Lilias
  40. Forbes, Bo
  41. Forrest, Ana
  42. Freeman, Richard
  43. Friedrichsen, Shari
  44. Friend, John
  45. Gannon, Sharron
  46. Gates, Rolf
  47. Guest-Jelley, Anna
  48. Halpern, Gabriel
  49. Heyman, Jivana
  50. Holcombe, Kate
  51. Holleman, Dona
  52. Hong, Hien
  53. Howard, Leslie
  54. Iyengar, B.K.S.
  55. Jois, K. Pattabhi
  56. Jois, Manu
  57. Kaivalya, Alanna
  58. Kaminoff, Leslie
  59. Kest, Bryan
  60. Khalsa, Gurmukh Kaur
  61. Kraftsow, Gary
  62. Kripalu, Swami
  63. Krishnamacharya, T.
  64. Lacambra , Robin Yolanda
  65. Lappa, Andrey
  66. Lasater, Judith Hanson
  67. Le Page, Joseph
  68. Lee, Cyndi
  69. Life, David
  70. Little, Tias
  71. Lozano, Ariana
  72. Maehle, Gregor
  73. Maharshi, Ramana
  74. Maitland, Malaika
  75. McGonigal, Kelly
  76. Michaan, Nevine
  77. Miller, Chuck
  78. Miller, Elise Browning
  79. Miller, Jill
  80. Miller, Richard
  81. Miller, Tim
  82. Mitchell, Jules
  83. Mittra, Dharma
  84. Mohan, A.G.
  85. Mondestin, Janessa
  86. Muktananda, Swami
  87. Myers, Nikki
  88. Nelson, Sonia
  89. Noble, Donna
  90. Palkhivala, Aadil
  91. Paul, Russill
  92. Payne, Larry
  93. Powers, Sarah
  94. Prabhupada, A.C. Bhaktidevanta Swami
  95. Pransky, Jillian
  96. Radha, Swami
  97. Rama, Swami
  98. Rangel, Luvena
  99. Ray, Kali
  100. Raye, Saul David
  101. Rea, Shiva
  102. Remski, Matthew
  103. Rivera, Julio
  104. Rosen, Richard
  105. Ross, Steve
  106. Rumbaugh, Desiree
  107. Sanford, Matthew
  108. Satchidananda,Sri Swami
  109. Schiffmann, Erich
  110. Schumacher, John
  111. Shankar, Sri Sri Ravi
  112. Sherman, Sianna
  113. Shyam, Padma
  114. Sivananda, Swami
  115. Snyder, Stephanie
  116. Stanley, Jessamyn
  117. Sterios, Peter
  118. Stern, Eddie
  119. Stonechild, Shayla
  120. Stryker, Rod
  121. Swenson, David
  122. Tigunait, Pandit Rajmani
  123. Titchkosky, Puja Singh
  124. Vernon, Rama Jyoti
  125. Vivekananda, Swami
  126. Walden, Patricia
  127. Walford, Lisa
  128. West, Alison
  129. White, Ganga
  130. Whitwell, Mark
  131. Wildcroft, Theo
  132. Yee, Colleen Saidman
  133. Yee, Rodney

About the Teachers

Arundhati Baitmangalkar

Baron Baptiste

  • Baptiste Power Vinyasa Yoga  link
  • About.com interview  link
  • Yoga Journal article 2018  link
  • Books & Media  link

Baxter Bell, MD

  • Baxter Bell website  link
  • Books & Media  link

Barbara Benagh

  • The Yoga Studio  link
  • Interview  link
  • Books & Media  link

Yogi Bhajan

  • Yogi Bhajan Library of Teachings  link
  • NY Times article link
  • Books & Media  link

Beryl Bender Birch

  • Beryl Bender Birch bio  link
  • About.com interview  link
  • Books & Media  link

Scott Blossom

  • Shunyata Yoga  link
  • Yoga Journal article  link
  • Media  link

Frank Jude Boccio

  • Mindfulness Yoga bio  link
  • Yoga Journal interview  link
  • Books & Media  link

Dianne Bondy

  • Dianne Bondy Yoga  link
  • Yoga and Body Image Coalition interview  link
  • Books & Media  link

Rane Bowen

Elena Brower

  • About Elena Brower  link
  • Books & Media  link

J. Brown

  • About J. Brown  link
  • J. Brown Yoga Talk Podcast  link

Nicole Cardoza

  • About Nicole  link
  • Yoga Journal article  link
  • Website  link

Annie Carpenter

  • About Annie Carpenter  link
  • LA Yoga article  link
  • Books & Media  link

Nam Chanterrwyn

  • About Nam  link
  • Yoga International  link

Hersha Harilela Chellaram

  • About Hersha  link
  • YogaWalla article  link

Constanza Eliana Chinea

  • About Constanza  link
  • YogaWalla article  link
  • Media  link

Bikram Choudhury

  • Yoga Journal interview  link
  • UK Telegraph article  link
  • Books & Media  link

Roger Cole

Stephen Cope

  • Yoga Journal interview:  link
  • Elephant Journal article link
  • Books & Media  link

Seane Corn

  • About Seane Corn  link
  • Deepak Chopra Interviews Seane Corn  link
  • Media  link

Nikki Costello

  • Nikki Costello bio  link
  • Article  link

Jason Crandell

  • Jason Crandell bio  link
  • Yoganonymous article  link
  • Media  link

Ram Dass

  • Yoga Journal Lifetime Contributors  link
  • Ram Dass website  link
  • Books & Media  link

Maris Degener

  • About Maris  link
  • Advisor at Phoenix Project  link
  • I Am Maris: Portrait of a Young Yogi,”  link

T.K.V. Desikachar

  • Krishnamacharya Yoga Mandiram Founder bio  link
  • Mark Whitwell In Remembrance  2016  link
  • Leslie Kaminoff Interviews T.K.V. Desikachar in Madras, October 1992  link
  • Books & Media  link

Swami Vishnu Devananda

  • International Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centres  link
  • Books & Media  link

Indra Devi

  • Yoga Journal article  link
  • NY Times article  link
  • Books & Media  link

Nischala Joy Devi

  • Nischala Joy Devi bio  link
  • Books & Media  link

Manoj Dias

  • Founder of A-Space   link
  • Still Together 2020  link

Nicki Doane

Pamela Stokes Eggleston

  • Yoga2sleep.com  link
  • Yoga Journal interview  link

Maty Ezraty

  • Maty Ezraty bio  link
  • Kathryn Budig Interviews Maty Ezraty  link

Donna Farhi

  • Donna Farhi bio  link
  • Books & Media  link

Angela Farmer

  • Victor and Angela bio  link
  • Books & Media  link

Georg Feuerstein

  • Traditional Yoga Studies  link
  • Books & Media  link

Alan Finger

  • ISHTA Yoga Lineage  link
  • Yoga Journal article  link
  • Books & Media  link

Dana Trixie Flynn

  • About Dana Trixie Flynn  link
  • Yoga Journal article  link

Lilias Folan

  • Yoga Journal article  link
  • Books & Media  link

Bo Forbes

Ana Forrest

  • Forrest Yoga  link
  • Books & Media  link

Richard Freeman

  • Richard Freeman bio  link
  • Books & Media  link

Shari Friedrichsen

  • About Shari Friedrichsen  link
  • Media  link

John Friend

Sharron Gannon

  • About Sharron Gannon  link
  • Books  link

Rolf Gates

  • Rolf Gates bio  link
  • Books & Media  link

Anna Guest-Jelley

  • About Anna Guest-Jelley  link
  • Books & Media  link

Gabriel Halpern

  • About Gabriel Halpern  link
  • Yoga Journal article  link

Jivana Heyman

  • About Jivana Heyman  link
  • LA Yoga interview  link

Kate Holcombe

  • About Kate Holcombe  link
  • Yoga International article  link

Dona Holleman

  • International Centered Yoga Association  link
  • Books  link

Hien Hong

Leslie Howard

B.K.S. Iyengar

  • B.K.S. Iyengar Yoga: The Official Website  link
  • Books & Media  link

Manu Jois

  • About Manu Pattabhi Jois of Mysore, South India link

K. Pattabhi Jois

  • K Pattabhi Jois Ashtanga Yoga Institute bio  link
  • Yoga Journal article  link
  • Books & Media  link

Alanna Kaivalya

  • About Alanna Kaivalya  link
  • Books & Media  link

Leslie Kaminoff

  • Leslie Kaminoff bio  link
  • Books & Media  link

Bryan Kest

  • About Bryan Kest  link
  • Books & Media  link

Gurmukh Kaur Khalsa

  • Yoga Journal Lifetime Contributors  link
  • Books & Media  link

Gary Kraftsow

  • About Gary Kraftsow  link
  • Books & Media  link

Swami Kripalu

  • Yoga Journal article  link
  • Books  link

T. Krishnamacharya

  • Krishnamacharya Yoga Mandiram  link
  • Yoga Journal article  link
  • Books  link

Robin Yolanda Lacambra

  • Founder of GoodbodyFeel  link
  • Yoga Walla article  link
  • About Robin  link

Andrey Lappa

  • About Andrey Lappa  link
  • Media  link

Judith Hanson Lasater

  • About Judith Hanson Lasater  link
  • Books  link

Joseph Le Page

  • About Joseph Le Page  link
  • Books & Media  link

Cyndi Lee

  • About Cyndi Lee  link
  • Books & Media  link

David Life

Tias Little

Ariana Lozano

  • About Ariana  link
  • POC meets Rainbow: Restorative Yoga, in Sacramento link

Gregor Maehle

  • About Gregor Maehle  link
  • Books  link

Ramana Maharshi

  • Sri Ramana Maharshi Website  link
  • Hridaya Yoga  link
  • Books  link

Malaika Maitland

Kelly McGonigal, PhD

  • Kelly McGonigal bio  link
  • MindBodyGreen article link
  • Books  link

Nevine Michaan

  • Nevine Michaan bio  link
  • Yoga Journal article  link

Chuck Miller

  • Chuck Miller Bio  link
  • Centered Yoga Article  link

Elise Browning Miller

  • Yoga Journal interview  link
  • Books & Media  link

Jill Miller

Richard Miller

  • Yoga Journal Lifetime Contributors  link
  • Books  link

Tim Miller

  • Tim Miller bio  link
  • Yoga Journal interview  link
  • Books  link

Jules Mitchell

  • About Jules Mitchell  link
  • Article  link
  • Books & Media  link

Dharma Mittra

  • Sri Dharma Mittra Yoga Bio  link
  • Books & Media  link

Janessa Mondestin

A.G. Mohan

Indra Mohan

Swami Muktananda

Nikki Myers

  • About Nikki Myers  link
  • Yoga Journal interview  link
  • Black Enterprise article  link
  • Media  link

Sonia Nelson

  • About Sonia Nelson  link
  • Huffington Post interview  link
  • Media  link

Donna Noble

Aadil Palkhivala

  • Aadil Palkhivala bio  link
  • Book  link

Russill Paul

Larry Payne

  • About Larry Payne  link
  • Books & Media  link

Sarah Powers

  • About Sarah Powers  link
  • Books & Media  link

A.C. Bhaktidevanta Swami Prabhupada

  • ISKCON – The International Society of Krishna Consciousness  link

Jillian Pransky

  • Jillian Pransky bio  link
  • Books & Media  link

Swami Radha

  • Yasodhara Ashram bio  link
  • Swami Radha  link
  • Books  link

Swami Rama

  • Himalayan Institute bioy  link
  • Books & Media  link
  • See also: Biographies  link

Luvena Rangel

  • About Luvena  link

Kali Ray

  • Kali Ray bio  link
  • Books & Media  link

Saul David Raye

  • Saul David Raye bio  link
  • Books & Media  link

Shiva Rea

  • Shiva Rea bio  link
  • Books & Media  link

Matthew Remski

  • About Matthew Remski  link
  • Books  link

Julio Rivera

Richard Rosen

  • Richard Rosen Website  link
  • Books  link

Steve Ross

Desiree Rumbaugh

  • Desiree Rumbaugh bio  link
  • Books & Media  link

Matthew Sanford

  • Matthew Sanford bio  link
  • Yoga Journal interview  link
  • Books & Media  link

Sri Swami Satchidananda

  • Satchidananda Ashram Yogaville  link
  • Books  link

Erich Schiffmann

  • Erich Schiffmann bio  link
  • Article by Erich Schiffmann  link
  • Books & Media  link

John Schumacher

  • John Schumacher bio  link
  • BBC article  link
  • Media  link

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

  • Sri Sri Ravi Shankar bio  link
  • The Art of Living  link
  • Books & Media  link

Sianna Sherman

  • About Sianna Sherman  link
  • Media  link

Padma Shyam

  • Padma Meditation & Yoga  link

Swami Sivananda

  • International Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centres bio  link
  • Yoga Journal article  link
  • Books  link

Stephanie Snyder

  • Stephanie Snyder website  link
  • TEDx Talk  link
  • Media  link

Jessamyn Stanley

  • About Jessamyn  link
  • The Under Belly website  link
  • Yoga Journal article  link
  • Book  link

Peter Sterios

  • Peter Sterios website  link
  • Media  link

Eddie Stern

  • About Eddie Stern  link
  • Huffington Post article by Eddie Stern  link
  • Books  link

Shayla Stonechild

Rod Stryker

David Swenson

  • Ashtanga Yoga Productions Bio  link
  • Books & Media  link

Pandit Rajmani Tigunait

  • Himalayan Institute bio  link
  • Yoga Journal interview  link
  • Books & Media  link

Puja Singh Titchkosky aka Prince Puja

Rama Jyoti Vernon

  • Rama Jyoti Vernon Website  link
  • Seattle Yoga News interview  link
  • Books & Media  link

Swami Vivekananda

  • Swami Vivekananda bio  link
  • Books  link

Patricia Walden

  • Patricia Walden bio  link
  • Books & Media  link

Lisa Walford

  • About Lisa Walford  link
  • Iyengar Yoga Institute of Los Angeles  link

Alison West

  • About Alison West  link
  • NY Times article  link

Ganga White

  • White Lotus Foundation  link
  • Books & Media  link

Mark Whitwell

  • Mark Whitwell bio  link
  • Huffington Post articles by Mark Whitwell  link
  • Books  link

Theo Wildcroft

  • Wild Yoga website  link
  • Yoga Alliance interview  link

Colleen Saidman Yee

  • Colleen Saidman Yee bio  link
  • Yoga Journal interview link
  • Books & Media  link

Rodney Yee

  • Rodney Yee Bio  link
  • Books & Media  link

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