Neel Kulkarni is a gift to those people who are interested in the history, philosophy and practice of Classical Yoga. His 'Health and Yoga System' has an unbelieveably sound foundation based on years of study and personal experience. It is both unique and innovative. His knowledge of both classical and contemporary texts and methods is extensive and he shows true scholarship in the sense that he remains well-informed about the different styles, methods and approaches to yoga. No matter the level of experience, Neel is able to help his students put their yoga learning experience into the correct context based on goals they set for themselves. Goals may be as simple as losing 5 pounds or more involved such as the study of Sanskrit and Chanting as it relates to Hatha Yoga. In an environment where there is an increasing amount of interest and talk of Yoga and equally, vast misunderstandings and/or misconceptions about it based on either lack of information or inability to put it into context, Neel remains firm in teaching Yoga based on it's original intentions but as they apply to our present-day lives. Neel's strength as a teacher is his practicality. Although he is aware of and very much rooted in theory, he is able (sometimes incredibly humorously) to show us how we can, most effectively, apply these theories to our lives. I've studied a little bit of everything with Neel in the past year and a half or so. I began with Sanskrit and Chanting and, later, added the Hatha Yoga classes as well as his Teacher Training, several Philosophy classes and two Meditation classes. Accomplishments that I can speak of are: I am able to chant an entire prayer in Sanskrit as well as recognize many words, my understanding of the history and purpose of Yoga has increased, my understanding of my own body and all of it's finer points has sharpened and, as a result, my poses, especially my Headstand, have improved. I dance as well and I have found that the combination of Yoga and Dance is a good one that has allowed for better ease of movement and, indirectly, clarity of thought. 'Authentic yoga' is truly a good name for Neel's style. It is unique in it's approach but also, graspable, practical and truly, truly 'wholistic'.
Iliana Quander, Dancer, Artist, Philosophy Major, Washington, DC