Yoga is a system of exercises and philosophy, intended to experience the unity of body and mind. Breath is the guiding principle in the exercises, which relaxes the nervous system and makes the practitioner feel relaxed, energetic and fit.
1.6 million Dutch people from all walks of life and throughout the country practice yoga.
Yoga has various sources, such as the book Bhagavad Gita and the Yoga Sutras. In the 15th century the Hatha Yoga Pradipiki appears with ten physical poses. The rise in the west is among others due to Krishnamacharaya and Iyengar. Pop idols such as The Beatles and Madonna have contributed to the popularity of yoga in the last decades. Yoga is also a counterpart to an increasingly busy and demanding society. Practitioners practice yoga in studios, gyms and (half of them) at home.