Yoga Anatomy Book Reviews
Functional Anatomy of Yoga
– Stu Girling – LoveYogaAnatomy.com
“Being a self professed anatomy geek and anatomy teacher on many Yoga Teacher Trainings around the world, I have every relevant book available. I would say that this book is the most useful and accessible book on yoga related anatomy that I have read and a must for any serious practitioner or prospective teacher. I have been impressed enough to make this book the course book for all my future trainings.”
The best anatomy lessons I have ever had!
Wow. So much info for students like myself and teachers alike! This is a book I will be referring to for years to come. As my practice deepens, my need for and understanding of this book will increase, I already know it! Best anatomy book I have ever seen, yoga or not. A great reference book for anyone’s library, home or school.
Finally a yoga anatomy book that provides down to earth information …
Finally, an anatomy book that provides down to earth information. David explains the how and why the body works in the yoga practice. I have taken anatomy classes as part of teacher training and have gotten more from reading this book. Well done!
– Peg Mulqueen – Ashtanga Dispatch
This book is not for everyone. In fact, if the following is true for you, then I’d steer clear of David Keil’s book on Anatomy:
1. You never use a small word when a diminutive one will do … then David’s very practical and easy-to-understand way of explaining anatomy will probably insult your (inflated) sense of intellect. Best to leave for the mere commoners.
2. You don’t practice yoga. Because then all that practical information David includes, like how the body works in yoga postures like forward bends, hip openers, twists, arm balances and backbends – well, those would be just wasted pages full of useless information.
3. You like to sleep – what other books on anatomy do: put people to sleep. Instead, you’ll end up awake, trying to feel the tendons of your hamstrings move behind the knee … or on all fours, playing with the way your scapula sticks up or rather, shouldn’t.
4. You live in a world of absolutes and just love a good ol’ lecture from the pulpit damning the other side – then David’s inclusion of various body types as well as his exceptions and adaptations – will only end up confusing your clear sense of right and wrong.
5. You have no sense of humor.
6. You either prefer dense paragraphs or love coloring books. David writes this book conversationally using illustrations of himself in various positions revealing the anatomical patterns, muscles, and bone structure – but already in full color so no crayons necessary.
7. You think anatomy is all there is to yoga. David’s a bit of a trickster even in person, that way. You go in wanting to talk pelvis and spine and instead, end up waist deep in breathing, self-study, and meditation.
Now, if none of these things apply to you and you STILL don’t have this book – what are you waiting for? Because this is the best damn book on anatomy and yoga I have read. Get it.
Making a reader feel as though the two of you just had a conversation in which he has made some complicated topics easy to understand
Keil writes in a conversational style, making a reader feel as though the two of you just had a conversation in which he has made some complicated topics easy to understand. This book offers an excellent presentation of information with supporting images. Most books of this type are not read cover-to-cover, but you’ll want to read this one that way.
Must have for yoga practitioners looking for accessible and clear explanations on the anatomy
This book is a treasure chest for yoga practitioners who don’t have a background in a science of anatomy. It is very accessible for everyone and has a lot of examples. This book is great for those who don’t have much time or ability to go way deep into the details of how humans’ body works, but at the same time don’t want to be left behind. David managed to summarise the most important aspects of his knowledge and experience in order to present it in a way, which is easy to understand and apply to the practice.
So many Aha! Moments… Wish I could give it 20 stars.
– Claudia Azula Altucher – ClaudiaYoga.com
David Keil is funny. Anatomy is a dry subject, as you probably know, and he manages to make it interesting and funny. I don’t know how he does that.
I am a fan of David, so let’s disclose that early, and just so you know I’ve watched all his DVDs as well. He has a bunch, some on anatomy and one on adjustments.
I don’t know him personally, however, I just know him via the web and I am glad I do.
The book is not only thoroughly researched and slanted, yes, towards yoga practitioners, but it is ALSO challenging…
He has one part (and I paraphrase) where he questions the reader point blank:
“What is it I hear you say? You say you tried to do the beautiful handstand for 8 years and still nothing? Really? Don’t you think maybe it might be time to change your “approach”?
And I laugh. Because he is right. I HAVE tried for 8 years and I it IS time to change approach, and I never read this book.
Well, in my defense, it was not published yet. Now it is. Lucky me. I tried handstand today and I was amazed and how FAR a little understanding can go.
I won’t get into too many details but I will tell you two things about the book: one is what I learned, and two is a suggestion
ONE: WHAT I LEARNED
a) The book re-introduced yoga practice for me.
For example, in a basic pose, like standing, just standing (toes touching heels slightly apart), if I simply lift my toes, that awakens the muscles around the lower part of my leg (tibia), which in turn informs how my quadriceps and hamstrings are aligned, and my pelvis, and how I stand, how I walk, how I move, the position of the spine, how I think and how I even live…
Forgive my words as I am not as learned and eloquent as David is, you should read the book
b) I FINALLY understand triangle pose. Finally, GET WHY it is that the alignment has to go the way it goes… I used to just repeat what I was told, now I get it. So when I am on the mat, my body takes on a whole different meaning.
And that happened not just with triangle but WITH A WHOLE BUNCH OF OTHER poses, which I now understand so much better.
The yoga mat is my playground now.
a) The book made me love my body – Because I can now understand how AMAZING it is.
I mean, just to notice for example, that the hips hold two-thirds of the weight of my body, and that the tissue and ligaments that hold the hip together to the hip are so strong you could not pull it, even with 3 people, because it won’t break, gives me a whole new level of respect.
TWO. A SUGGESTION:
DO buy his DVDs on anatomy.
And no, I do NOT get a commission.
The reason why is because as I watch the DVD and then read the book I get MORE CLEAR on all the details, everything comes alive when I look at both. It’s like having a yoga teacher showing you things in three dimensions.
Especially if you are a teacher, give yourself this gift because you will teach a completely different, much more informed class after reading him and watching him.
OK, I can’t help it, here is A THIRD THING
He has a section at the end of the book where he integrates all the anatomy lessons into the asanas. That is gold. For anyone who practices. The first chapter may be boring (although necessary for teachers) but the last section is a gift for anyone interested in yoga.