Why Yogis Flock To Rishikesh The Yoga Capital Of The World For Yoga Teacher Training

Rishikesh, the yoga capital of the world, is a city located in India. It is embraced by river banks and hills, making it supercharged with spiritual energy. 

India is recognized globally for being a cradle of spirituality. Yoga saints traveled to Rishikesh thousands of years ago to practice yoga.

Now, the world capital of yoga and meditation is home to acclaimed ashrams, reputed yoga schools, and centers. The small Indian city is dotted with temples on every corner. 

Thousands of yoga practitioners, such as myself, dream of making the pilgrimage to Rishikesh. Let’s discover why there is no shortage of yoga in the city of Rishikesh.


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Rishikesh India sits on the Ganges river.

Rishikesh is located in the state of Uttarakhand, found in northern India. It is nestled at the foot of the Himalayan Mountains. 

It is the gateway to the Himalayas as it sits in the lap of natural beauty. Rishikesh lives along the winding streams that lead off of the Ganges. 

The Ganges is considered the most sacred river to the Hindus. The locals call the river “mother” as the spiritual energy is elevated in the city. 

Rishikesh offers breathtaking natural views. It is lush in green with fresh air and pristine waters. The local authorities do their part to cultivate its natural essence and keep the city untouched from pollution.

Yoga is a practice that demands to be near the heavens. Rishikesh is surrounded by scenic mountains and pure rivers. Therefore, every corner in the city makes for a great space to practice yoga. 

Rishikesh is rich in culture, yoga, and spiritual heritage. This historic town is also called Yoganagari, the “city of yoga.”

Rishikesh is considered to be one of the holiest places in India. It is home to many saints (rishis) as well as spiritual leaders and seekers. Rishis from ancient times came to this pilgrimage town to meditate and seek higher knowledge.  

The small city is home to a cluster of ashrams, yoga teacher training, and spiritual retreats. Some ashrams, such as the Sivananda Ashram, focus solely on yoga. Others, focus more on meditation, like Osho Gangadem. 

You can find many ashrams in the center of Rishikesh. However, there are more ashrams found further from the center. There are plenty of opportunities to practice in peace and surrounded by nature–away from the hustle and bustle. 

Rishikesh offers such a rich yoga lifestyle. Common services are not always readily available. The city blocks out the external noise and focuses on internal spiritual developments.

The city is brimming with temples. This is a place where the day begins and ends with yoga and meditation. 

Female yogi sitting in lotus position on a rock on the Ganges river in Rishikesh.

Rishikesh, the yoga capital of the world, attracts tens of thousands of yoga enthusiasts per year. Practitioners from different countries, cultures, and backgrounds gather in this magical city. 

Rishikesh is a pioneer in spreading the practice of yogic arts. It is a place to completely experience yoga and meditation from the start of your day to the end. 

Parmarth Niketan hosts an annual International Yoga Festival directed by the Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati. They offer basic shared rooms for as little as $12. 

You can attend Ganga Aarti which is performed every night along the river. These events usually involve music and fire as an offering to Ganges–“mother.”

Many temples perform sessions of Kirtan. These are lengthy chants of call and response. They are usually accompanied by flutes, tablas, harmoniums, and other instruments. 

The Ganges River is holy and secluded. It is not affected by pollution. In the morning, yogis bathe in the flowing clean waters, followed by meditation.

Rishikesh is known as the birthplace of yoga. Rishis, reputed yoga gurus, and yoga practitioners have traveled here for thousands of years. This holy city is a place for them to deepen their practice, become instructors, and attain enlightenment. 

In 300 B.C., practicing yoga was kept secret. It was known for mystical powers that improved people’s health beyond limitations.

The birth of yoga was first transmitted by Shiva. Shiva is called the King of Yogis and the Lord of Lords. He taught 7 disciples in the Himalayan Mountains along the Ganges. The 7 rishis took yoga all across India.

The tradition of passing on yoga from guru to disciples continued. This is why yoga has survived for thousands of years. Yoga has become an integral part of so many people’s lives.

Today, the Ganges River continues to flow through Rishikesh. The locals know that the Ganges is not just a river. 

Ganges is the goddess and the divine mother. She rushes down the Himalayan Mountains as the giver of life.

Her spiritual significance carries bliss, purity, and liberation into the holy city. She gives her waters freely to all without discrimination, hesitation, or any expectations.

Rishikesh, the yoga capital of the world, is a Hindu pilgrimage site. It rests peacefully on either side of the holy river. 

Many reputed yoga gurus have chosen this sacred city to practice for decades. Some include Guru Vashishtha, Adiguru Nilkantha, Swami Shivanand, Swami Dayanad Saraswati, Jatawale Baba, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Swami Sukhdevanand, and Swami Aatm Prakash.

Guru Swami Sivananda founded the Divine Life Society in 1936. It is an ashram and spiritual organization in Rishikesh.

The ashram was built right beside the holy river for spiritual practices. This organization welcomes every human being, no matter the time or day. 

The Divine Life Society has grown to have many branches located worldwide. However, the headquarters remains in Rishikesh.

In February of 1968, The Beatles visited Rishikesh on a soul-searching journey. They stayed at the former ashram that belonged to Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. 

The yogi taught transcendental meditation to many celebrities. They include Mike Love of The Beach Boys, Mick Jagger, Mia Farrow, and more. 

Transcendental meditation is practiced one-on-one. It offers a scientific approach to understanding the way of life by looking inward.

Rishikesh remains a popular destination for foreigners and yoga practitioners alike. Its tranquil atmosphere and stunning views make for the perfect yoga practice.  

This sacred city is the best destination for anyone to learn about the science of yoga. It is home to some of the most reputed yoga schools offering yoga teacher training certification. It is a sanctuary for students to further develop their skills and dive deeper into all aspects of yoga. 

There is something for everyone in Rishikesh. The city is dotted with ashrams and temples dedicated to yoga and meditation.

Students and practitioners can learn about all types of yoga and meditation. From Hatha to Kundalini, beginner or advanced. 

Rishikesh is a city where ancient history meets modern accommodations and amenities. It contributes to the economic boom for locals. 

However, due to its serene beauty, it is becoming more of a mainstream tourist center. Many tourist resorts are opening up. This disrupts the peaceful vibe of Rishikesh.

The banks of rivers that were once secluded are now a hub for outdoor water activities. Some tourist camps organize water rafting and water sports along the river.  

There are many efforts to keep yoga as the focus of this holy town. Environmental activists are fighting to keep the pristine and tranquil atmosphere of the area. They intend to limit the environmental impact of adventurous water sports. 

There are plenty of buzz-worthy restaurants in town. But alcohol and non-vegetarian foods are not allowed in Rishikesh. There are vegetable and fruit stands, sweets shops, and coffee shops that offer free and stable wi-fi.

Rishikesh offers more than just yoga. It offers a wholesome experience for all visitors. There are plenty of other activities to compliment your yoga practice. Some include treks, climbs, meadows, cultural affairs, and more wonders. 

Rishikesh, the world capital of yoga, is the best place to visit to experience yoga and spirituality. This holy city in India rests on the foothills of the Himalayan Mountains. 

Rishikesh is the birthplace of yoga, the popular practice that benefits both body and mind. There are never-ending ashrams with breathtaking views of nature and a pristine atmosphere. 

This dream destination is charged with so much spiritual energy. If you’re like me and plan on visiting the Yoga Mecca, travel between October and April. 

Rishikesh is full of life during this time. Whether you are looking for yoga teacher training or yoga retreats–there is something for everyone. 

Some online yoga studios, online yoga teacher training programs, and brands that we write about may offer us a small percentage should you decide to purchase after reading our content. Thank you for enabling us to exist!

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Claudicet
Claudicet

Claudicet is a Certified Yoga Teacher. In 2017 she was voted the “Best Yoga Teacher” in Atlanta by Best Self Atlanta Magazine. She has been trained and certified with Life Power Yoga, Alanna Kaivalya Method, and CorePower Yoga. Claudicet is grateful for the gift of yoga. The practice helped her discover a profound connection to her true nature. In turn, she has been able to guide and inspire her students on their journeys of healing, love, and connection. She is passionate about encouraging others to prioritize their well-being and create a lifestyle that they love. Claudicet can be reached at claudicetp@theyogatique.com, or you can connect with Claudicet on LinkedIn.

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