Hansaji Yogendra has devoted 73 years to the gentle exercise — spanning love, life, heartbreak and tragedy
At 76 years old, yoga instructor Hansaji Yogendra has no plans to slow
The grandmother from Mumbai jets around the world teaching classes,
training other instructors and opening studios, the first of which in the UAE
has recently opened in Dubai’s Jumeirah Lakes Towers.
Yogihearts, in Cluster T, is an affiliate of The Yoga Institute, to which
Yogendra has devoted her life as director.
The institute claims to be the world’s oldest yoga centre — and if you’re
looking for Goop-style Insta-snaps at sunset, then you’re in the wrong
How can you retire from life?
Since opening in 1918, the institute has focused on yoga as a source of inner calm and peace, with asanas — or physical poses — only forming a small part of the picture.
This is not a fierce, Instagrammable, dog-eat-downward-dog type of yoga. There are no scary poses or hyped-up salutations. Instead, classes are centred on gentle flows, traditional music and meditation.
“All circus people would be great yogis if asana were the only factor,” says Yogendra. “Yoga is not standing on your head or hot yoga or power yoga — yoga is a way of life, a science of living. Real yoga deals with the mind; psychology, philosophy, mastering your thoughts and reaching higher levels of consciousness.”