Patanjali is one of the most recognised names in yoga history. Whilst there isn’t a huge amount of available information about Patanjali himself, he is known to have been responsible for compiling The Yoga Sutras – a collection of Indian traditions, presented in 195 short verses. This text holds significant value in the history of yoga, as the first structured record of yoga practice as a way of life, which Patanjali took from many different past practices at the time.
The full history of yoga is fairly unclear still, despite many curious researchers digging deep to further piece together the jigsaw.
Part of the reason for this uncertainty, is that in the early days of yoga, knowledge was passed on by word-of-mouth only. Later, this word-of-mouth knowledge was written onto palm leaves, however with their fragility these were often damaged, lost or destroyed, leaving few clues as to the early origins of yoga practice.