Yoga is much more than the physical practice on your mat. It’s what you learn on your mat that is truly important, and is something you can bring into your everyday life. As a huge proponent of reading, I always think that books are a wonderful way to enhance what you’ve learned in yoga class. With that in mind, I’ve put together a list of some of the most essential yoga books to further your practice and learn more about yoga.

After your physical practice, why not curl up on the couch with a tea and one of these books?

Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda

Written by a guru of meditation and Kriya yoga, Autobiography of a Yogi is a truly fascinating read. Covering Yogananda’s life, from his childhood in India, to finding a guru, to moving to Los Angeles, this is an insiders look into spiritual thought in the East, as well as the foundations of yoga in America.

Meditations from the Mat by Katrina Kenison and Rolf Gates

My first yoga teacher was the one who recommended this book to me, and I’m so glad she did. Set up like a devotional, Meditations from the Mat has a text to meditate on each day, so it’s a wonderful book for both your physical and meditation practice!

The Heart of Yoga by T.K.V Desikachar

Written by the son of Sri Tirumalai Krishnamacharya, The Heart of Yoga offers an overview of yogic philosophy, as well as how the breath and postures work together in a yoga practice. If you want to get back to the basics, this is the book for you.

The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

Talking about really getting back to the basics, why not check out the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali? The yoga sutras are the basis of yoga today, and are 100% worth a read if you’re looking for a new essential yoga book.

Light on Yoga by B.K.S. Iyengar

A staple of yoga teacher trainings the world over, Light on Yoga by Iyengar, one of the giants of the yoga world, encourages proper alignment and breaks down yoga philosophy. Let it inspire you just like it’s inspired millions of other yogis!

Yoga Mind, Body & Spirit by Donna Farhi

This book is fantastic, as it’s a wonderful guide to setting up your own yoga practice. Completely accessible and with lots of photos and illustrations, if you want a breath of fresh air in your yoga practice, this is the book for you.

Yoga Anatomy by Leslie Kaminoff

If you’ve been wanting to improve your alignment, or just find out what’s going on under the skin when you’re practicing, then this is the book for you. Another staple of yoga trainings, Yoga Anatomy is, from a purely scientific point of view, one of the most informative yoga books I’ve ever read.

Have you read any of these books, or do you have any others that you want to see on the list? Make sure to let us know!