When you dive into a yoga teacher training, part of that incredible experience is the books and reading that you will inevitably be assigned! And as yoga teachers, we know that it’s our responsibility to continue deepening our knowledge and connnection to the practice.
Our yoga practice is a tool to help us navigate the human experience. And for some of us, curling up with a good book occasionally is our yoga practice, helping us to create union between body, mind, and soul – just as our physical and spiritual practice does.
This list of books for yoga teachers is perfect for just that – creating union. These books reflect the broad spectrum that is yoga – from philosophy to lifestyle, spirituality to physical poses – and beyond.
Here Are 10 Must-Read Books for Yoga Teachers:
1. Autobiography of a Yogi
The infamous and beloved Autobiography of a Yogi is the fascinating and inspiring autobiography of Paramahansa Yogananda that describes the life of the famous yogi who is said to have brought yoga to the Western world from India.
Unlike many boring autobiographies, this one is styled as an entertaining novel with many mind-blowing stories of Yogananda’s life growing up in India.
Some of his fascinating life experiences include mystical stories of him learning about ancient techniques of the yogis, such as levitation, teleportation, and reaching higher levels of consciousness.
This moving novel is one of the best books for yoga teachers as it’s sure to grab your attention and inspire you to delve deeper into your yoga practice.
2. The Bhagavad-Gita
The Bhagavad Gita is one of the most classic and ancient Hindu scriptures that is part of the epic poem the Mahabharata, and is considered to be one of the greatest works of literature today.
The story is a dialogue between warrior Arjuna and his spiritual guru, Sri Krishna. This inspiring and beautiful story guides the reader to self-inquire and ponder about the important questions in life, guiding you into your own spiritual growth.
As one of the most important texts of yogic literature, the Bhagavad Gita is a must-read book for yoga teachers and is a staple in most yoga teacher trainings.
3. The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali
Written over 4,000 years ago, the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali are perhaps the most important text to date on yoga philosophy.
The sutras contain ancient philosophy and wisdom that guide us toward greater union of the body, mind, and soul. Another book that’s typically a staple in yoga teacher trainings, you’ve likely studied the sutras in greater depth as they’re a fundamental basis to learning the way of yoga.
Without a doubt, the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali is an essential book for yoga teachers to read.
4. This Is That
A beautiful interpretation of the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, This Is That contains the wisdom of the sutras in a very comprehensible and easy to understand manner.
Anand Mehrotra, author and owner of popular retreat center and yoga school Sattva Yoga Academy, wrote this book to uncover the clues from Padas 1 and 2 from Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras.
This book is a beautiful rendition of the sutras leading its readers to uncover the practice, the state, and the experience of yoga.
5. The Four Agreements
- Be Impeccable with your word
- Don’t take anything personally
- Don’t draw assumptions
- Always do your best
These are the four agreements explained in Don Miguel Ruiz’s book, and as short and simple as they may seem, these nuggets of advice are life-changing.
I read this book about once every year and have personally observed the shifts in my mind as I’ve adopted the teachings from The Four Agreements into my life.
Especially as a yoga teacher, adopting these agreements into your world will dramatically improve your teaching ability and the way you show up as a teacher. This book is short enough to read in a day, yet the wisdom you gain will last for years.
6. Light on Life
Written by legend B.K.S. Iyengar, Light on Life (not to be confused with Light on Yoga – another book by B.K.S. Iyengar and YTT staple) is filled with his personal stories and wisdom that reveal the power of yoga and how it can help you overcome life challenges.
This perfect book for yoga teachers will leave you feeling inspired, and take you on a journey toward discovering wholeness.
7. 2,100 Asanas
2,100 Asanas by Daniel Lacerda is one of the most complete and detailed books for yoga teachers that I’ve seen when it comes to asana.
It’s conveniently filled with lots of photos so you can understand visually, and it explains detailed modifications and descriptions with each posture. This is a must-have book for yoga teachers to increase your knowledge of asana.
8. When Love Comes to Light
When Loves Comes to Light: Bringing Wisdom from the Bhagavad Gita Into Modern Life by Richard Freeman and Mary Taylor offers a practical and digestible interpretation of The Bhagavad Gita.
With an emphasis on self-reflection through the lens of quotes, citations and a translation of the text, When Loves Comes to Light explores central themes like love, wisdom, and karma and also offers exercises throughout to apply these teachings to our personal and professional lives, making it a must-read book for yoga teachers.
9. The Power of Now
In this wildly popular (and for good reason) book The Power of Now, Eckhart Tolle explains so beautifully the aspect of the ego, how it works, and how we can observe it and return to pure presence.
This is another life-changing book to help you to step back from your thoughts, and transcend the ego mind. Another must-read book for yoga teachers – and everyone!
Ayurveda, meaning “knowledge of life”, is an ancient alternative medicine system stemming from India. It is considered to be the “sister science” of yoga, and is still used in day-to-day life in India.
In her book titled Ayurveda, Sahara Rose explains what the ancient practice is and how to incorporate its knowledge into your daily life. It also includes healthy recipes and yoga postures specifically for your dosha.
There Is an Endless Supply of Great Yoga Books for Yoga Teachers to Read
Hopefully, you’ll enjoy these books as they lead you deeper into your experience of yoga – of union, with your body, mind, and soul.
Can’t get enough yoga books? Here are 10 Books Every Yogi Should Read
But keep in mind that this is just the tip of the book list iceberg when it comes to books for yoga teachers. So keep exploring other titles and reading more books as you learn and grow on your yoga journey.
What are your favorite yoga books? Have any other favorite books for yoga teachers? Let us know in the comments below – we love hearing from you!