Toshiro M.

Japanese practitioners appreciate Kripalu Yoga for its realistic and applicable approach to life.

There’s an emphasis on individuality—what you think and feel are important,” says Toshiro Miura, owner of the sole Kripalu Yoga studio in Japan. “The mind is not something to change or to deny, but to be aware of and be friends with.”

While living in the US for four years, Toshiro was introduced to Kripalu Yoga and met Swami Kripalu. Toshiro returned to Japan in 1981 and settled in the small town of Odawara. He was unable to find a single yoga class, so he  began conducting classes himself.

“Kripalu Yoga helps me get in touch with my real feelings and at the same time, encourages me to accept and take responsibility for myself,” he says. “I believe many Japanese people can benefit from this.”  That belief inspired Toshiro to establish his Kripalu Affiliate Studio, Yoga of Life, in Tokyo, which today employs 12 Kripalu Yoga teachers and has trained another 80 who teach around the country.

“Japanese [practitioners] appreciate Kripalu Yoga for its realistic and applicable approach to life—so much so that many of them have experienced a transformational change in the way they live or view life,” Toshiro says. “The difficulty is that Japanese people are not encouraged to feel what’s inside. At first, it’s a puzzle. It takes time. Kripalu Yoga offers tools to help people understand what they’re experiencing, and to share it with each other using conscious communication.”