“Aṣṭāṅga Yoga Anuṣṭhāna”: 1st vs. 2nd Edition


1st Edition: March 2013

Last year R. Sharath Jois published his first book, Aṣṭāṅga Yoga Anuṣṭhāna. It’s a very detailed Aṣṭāṅga practice manual, which sets out the entire sequence of Primary Series, including the correct vinyāsa count (flow of breath and movement) and dṛṣṭi (gazing point) for each āsana (posture), as well as a section on the yamas and niyamas (behaviours and principles), some practice notes and mantrāḥs (chants).

The book was published in March 2013 and wasn’t widely available to purchase outside of India, so many people queued up at the shala shop in Mysore this season to purchase a copy.

However, in January 2014 he released a 2nd edition. Shock, horror! He announced this at conference one Sunday, so lots of students promptly hurried to the shop to get their updated copy, many asking if they could have a refund on the 1st edition. As I suspected, this was met with a resounding “No”! Best to just accept it and call it a collector’s edition I reckon.

So, the question on everyone’s lips now is: “What’s the difference between the two editions?” Well, you’re in luck because that’s exactly what I’ve taken the trouble to find out. Lakshmish told us in Saṁskṛta (Sanskrit) class one day that much of the Sanskrit text was grammatically incorrect, so he painstakingly checked through the entire book again to make the necessary corrections.

2nd Edition: January 2014

2nd Edition: January 2014

I thought I’d do the same thing, comparing the editions to determine exactly how they differ. “Why on earth would you do that?” I hear you cry. Well, maybe because I love proofreading and ‘spot the difference’ competitions, maybe because I’m an anal retentive, or maybe because I just wanted to show some empathy for Lakshmish.

Whatever the reason, I’ve done it (and thoroughly enjoyed it I might add), so if you’d like to see for yourself what the differences are, just click below to open the PDF.



Aṣṭāṅga Yoga Anuṣṭhāna Comparison

Incidentally, Lakshmish also mentioned that many mistakes are commonly made in writing the asana names in Sanskrit, including in many well-known books by senior teachers. Some of the most common spelling mistakes include: marīcāsana (not marichyasana); paścimattānāsana (not pashimottanasana); pūrvattānāsana (not purvottanasana). If in doubt, refer to Lakshmish’s chanting sheet or p.26 of the 2nd edition of Aṣṭāṅga Yoga Anuṣṭhāna (there are in fact some slight differences between these two sources but they’re largely the same).

I hope you’ve found this guide useful and if you ever need a proof-reader, give me a shout!

15 thoughts on ““Aṣṭāṅga Yoga Anuṣṭhāna”: 1st vs. 2nd Edition

  1. Pingback: Differences Between 1st and 2nd Edition of the Ashtanga Yoga Anusthana - Ashtanga Picture Project - Ashtanga Picture Project

  2. Great work Hannah. I hope you don’t mind, but I shared your findings on my blog (I can remove the post again if you prefer). Really like the fact that Mayurasana has been added in to the new edition.

    • Hi Darryl, thanks for your feedback. No, of course, that’s absolutely fine. Happy to be of service! Yes I haven’t tried Mayurasana before but I might have to give it a go now as it sounds so beneficial!

      • Thanks, but my guilt won in the end and I just updated the post with part of the pdf with your blog link below for the rest. Great work.

  3. Thank you so much!! This was great, I corrected my 1st edition with your pdf. Do you have any idea, if there’s going to be a corrected edition of the poster as well?

    • Hi Emma. You’re most welcome, I’m glad you found it useful. Hmm, actually I don’t but that’s a good question. I will endeavour to find out while I still have a week left in Mysore, and let you know.

      • Hi Emma. I did actually ask about the poster but no, it doesn’t sound they’re planning to update it. I don’t think the changes are significant enough to warrant producing a new one.

  4. Nice post. Could you tell me what are the number of repetitions of suryanamaskar B presented in the 2 books? Thank you.

    • Hi Nuno, thanks. I actually replied to your comment on Grimmly’s post before I saw your comment here too. In both books Sharath merely outlines the sequence and correct vinyasa count for Suryanamaskara A and B; he makes no mention of how many repetitions of each should be done. However, in a recent conference he did say you can do 5 and 3, or 7 and 5 if it’s cold and you need to build more heat. So it sounds like it’s up to the individual practitioner and/or their teacher to decide.

  5. Pingback: The subtle differences between 1st and 2nd editions of Astanga Yoga Anusthana | The Confluence Countdown

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