The Tenets of Yoga: Yamas and Niyamas

Last week in my Dharma-inspired classes at Yoga District, I began a 10-week series on the guiding principles of Yoga. These 10 principles, or tenets, are found in the Yamas (five internal work) and Niyamas (five external work) which form the first two limbs of the eight limbs of Yoga (the other six are Asana = postures, Pranayama = control of the life force/breath, Pratyahara = withdraw of the senses, Dharana = concentration, Dhyana = meditation, and Samadhi = nirvana/connection to the greater self).

Each week, we break down one of the 10 tenets and discuss the meaning. It never ceases to amaze me how much these principles must guide all aspects of life: Crossfit, day job, relationships, etc. I felt compelled to provide them here so that we may all be curious about them.  Maybe you’ll notice how one or a few of these manifest in your lives. May we all be more in present and aware:


  • Ahimsa (non-violence)
  • Satya (truthfulness)
  • Asteya (non-stealing; non-judgment)
  • Brahmacharya (right use of energy)
  • Aparigraha (non-greed; non-attachment)


  • Saucha (cleanliness; purity)
  • Santosa (contentment)
  • Tapas (heat; spiritual austerities)
  • Svadhyaya (self-study; study of the sacred texts)
  • Isvara pranidhana (surrender)

I’ll update periodically with lessons from the explorations into these principles.


#RogueYogi #Yamas #Niyamas #Yoga #YogaLife #FoodForThought #Ethics #EthicalPractice


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