Frequently Asked Questions

The following information applies only to courses at Agama Yoga India. Please refer to the websites of other Agama locations for information and answers pertaining to those campuses. 

How do I get to the Yoga hall?
Directions to the yoga hall can be found here

Why study with Agama?

Agama returns to the primary sources of Yoga, restoring the original meaning to the Yoga system: the complete development of the being for the aim of attaining spiritual liberation. Through systematic teachings based on curricula that become more and more advanced, progress is assured to all sincere practitioners.

Accommodation

There are many places to stay in the Ram Jhoola area. Many of the students choose to stay in various guesthouses within 5 -10 minutes walk of the yoga hall. There are rooms directly across from the Yoga hall, as well. Any teacher can help direct you when you arrive.

Rooms range within Rs 400-1000. Some have a space for a kitchen setup, but you must supply the kitchenware. Other places have a communal kitchen and refrigerator (such as Sudesh, Ananda, and Sarika); other places contain only a room. Gyatri Kunj is a nice guest house that offers communal fridge. Most places have a hot shower, though it is always good to check before committing to stay in the room. Often times a place will offer a discount for people who are staying for a month or longer.

***We provide only yoga classes. We do not provide or process any information about accommodation and food.

Do I need to reserve a room before arriving?

If one would like to make a booking with them please find a contact for one of them through the internet and book independently. When making a reservation it is good to be aware that sometimes guesthouses do not hold to their agreement if a better offer comes along.

Food

Rishikesh is by law, a vegetarian area. However eggs are sometimes served at a restaurant. If you eat out: The average cost for a meal is Rs 75-120.

If you cook for yourself it’s much cheaper, on average Rs 50 per meal. Local stores rent out stoves. Or you can stay in a place where there is a communal kitchen and pay a small fee to use it daily.

What sort of food is available to purchase in the area?

There are many delicious restaurants within a 10 minute walk from the yoga hall. Cuisine choices typically include Indian, Italian, Israeli, and American. There are also fruit and vegetable carts all around. The local shops have a variety of rice, lentils, flours, etc available and some also offer organic goods.

Shared kitchens are available at some of the guesthouses (Sarika, Ananda, Sudesh).

What is the Agama 4 Week Yoga Intensive?
The 4 Week Yoga Intensive is our most popular course offering worldwide. The experience is an excellent and comprehensive introduction to the fundamentals of Yoga. It entails two Hatha Yoga sessions per day and an evening lecture, forming a retreat-like atmosphere. 

Our students also very much enjoy the experience of community that we cultivate at Agama. We sponsor rare documentaries and Yoga-related films, bhajans and kirtan, special meditations as announced, evening lectures, etc. Unlike in the West, where students merely drop in to classes and leave, it is one of our aims to promote a yogi community that resembles the strength of connections found in ashram life.

Do I need to reserve in advance to join the 4 Week Yoga Intensive?
We have limited space, therefore it is recommended to register early. You are welcome to join us whenever you arrive; your first day is at a discounted price! This course runs quite often, please check the calendar to check the dates. If you start the course in the middle, you can finish it off when it begins again the following month. 

Is it possible to attend the 4  Week Yoga Intensive on a drop-in basis?
The 4 Week Yoga Intensive is a certificate course. To receive this certificate, a student needs to attend at least 75% of the course sessions. However, it is not necessary for you as a student to seek the certificate. Therefore, yes, the course is open on a drop-in basis. You may attend for one class, one day, one week, or the full month.

Is it possible to attend a 6 day Workshop on a drop-in basis?
No. Workshops are designed to be taken as a complete experience, therefore single session drop-ins are not allowed. It is permitted however for a student to begin attending a workshop after it has began. In this case, regardless of start date, full course pricing still applies.

Do I need experience to join the 4 Week Yoga Intensive?
No, this course is designed for absolute beginners. At the same time, people who have been studying yoga for years are also fulfilled because of the depth of the teachings and different way of practicing.

What does the 4 Week Yoga Intensive, daily program look like?
The intensive meets 6 days a week, Monday through Saturday, for 4 weeks:
08:30-10:30 Morning theory, Hatha Yoga practice, and deep relaxation
16:00-18:00 Afternoon sun salutations, Hatha Yoga practice, meditation, and deep relaxation
18:00-19:30 Evening lecture on the fundamentals of Yoga
20:00 Evening events as announced (optional and free)

What does the workshop, daily program look like?
Workshops typically meet 6 days a week, Monday through Saturday, for 4 weeks:
09:00-12:00 Morning theory, exercises, and meditation
16:30-19:30 Evening theory, excercies, and meditation

How do I register for classes?

Can I repeat a course, workshop, or retreat? If so, what are the fees?
Yes. The days a student has attended and completed within the 4 Week Yoga Intensive (Level 1) and all following levels can be repeated for free. For repeating any of the workshops, the price is approximately 1/4 of the original purchase price. 

 I’ve been teaching Yoga for years. Do you offer advanced classes? 
Agama Yoga provides a unique Yoga system in the world and we ask that all students begin with our 4 Week Yoga Intensive – regardless of their experience studying or teaching other Yoga varieties. Agama adheres to the traditional Indian Yoga methodology of teaching by initiation and, therefore, we do not believe it is possible to learn Yoga properly through self-study of books. Additionally, since we cannot know the manner, accuracy, depth, or completeness of information, techniques, or methodology taught by any number of thousands worldwide who call themselves Yoga teachers, we need to verify that our students are “on the same page” with us, that they have received the proper foundations, that they understand the fundamental Yoga concepts, and that they are adequately prepared for their introduction and journey through this highly energetic Kundalini Yoga program. Kundalini Yoga must be approached with attention and care, and it would be irresponsible on our part to place students unknown to us at higher levels of the curriculum. For all of these reasons, everyone starts at the beginning.

Can my children attend Yoga courses? If so, what are the fees?
Children 11 years old and younger may attend Yoga classes free of charge as long as they are accompanied by an adult and they do not disrupt the class. Children 12 years old and older must pay full price.

For those under the age of 12, permission to attend each course level beyond the First Level Intensive Course must be granted on an individual basis.

For those under the age of 18, attendance of workshops and retreats requires either approval in advance by a Level 5 or up teacher on an individual basis or co-attendance by a parent or guardian.

What do I need to bring to the Yoga Classes?

We provide yoga mats. If you prefer your own mat, you can buy one here or you can bring your own from home.

How is the weather in Rishikesh?

September is quite not. It starts to cool down in October. November and the beginning of December is very pleasant. It is cold from the end of December through end of February. March is great weather. Mid april it starts to get hot again. Blankets, jackets, space heaters for the room can all be bought in Rishikesh.

What can I do to prepare myself before coming? Any books I should read?

It is not necessary to do anything before coming.  If you would like, we recommend Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda. For those who want to prepare their body slightly, we can recommend a few dietary choices which are beneficial to almost everybody:  Take your last food by 7pm which allows the liver to do it´s cleansing duties in the evening unhindered.  Fast once a week on herbal tea or vegetable juice to give the digestive organs a break.   Get to sleep before 10 or 11pm for deeper rejeuvenation.  Cut out of your diet or reduce fried foods, canned foods, reheated foods, microwaved foods, meat and complicated food combinations.  Start your day with two glasses of warm lemon water or herbal tea to rehydrate after the evening.  These are simply recommendations and you may want to confirm them with your doctor if you are unsure.

Do I need a visa?

India recently started to offer 30 day visa upon arrival for certain nationalities. Otherwise, you need to get a visa before being allowed to enter India. The length of the tourist visa depends upon one’s nationality.

Is there an airport nearby?

Yes, Duhradun airport is 30 - 40 minute away from Rishikesh. Flights from New Delhi to Duhradun are around 4,500 rs. A taxi from Duhradun airport to Ram Jhula, Rishikesh is aprox 800 rs.

Shall i be concerned if I am taking medicine?

The simple answer is probably no but if you have a complex medical situation which may impair your ability to do Yoga or do it safely we recommend that you send us the details as soon as possible so we can forward them to our head specialist in that field, a professional doctor.

What is Yoga?
Yoga is a system of techniques developed in ancient India and designed to lead the dedicated practitioner to full enlightenment as to the nature of reality and the Supreme.

Why do Yoga?
The practice of Yoga allows the practitioner to reach his or her highest potential and reveals the greatest mysteries of the Universe. It also has more worldly applications that promote healing, improvement in the quality of life, and the realization of paranormal phenomena.

Why are there so many types of Yoga?
The many types of Yoga suit the many different types of practitioners. Hatha Yoga (sun-moon Yoga) involves the physical body and leads to the balance of the solar and lunar energies. Most popular forms of Yoga, e.g., Iyengar, Sivananda, Ashtanga (not to be confused with Patanjali’s traditional eight-fold Ashtanga Yoga), Vinyasa, Kundalini (not to be confused with traditional Kundalini Yoga), etc., are styles of Hatha Yoga. There are four classic types of Yoga: Jnana Yoga (the Yoga of direct knowledge), Bhakti Yoga (the Yoga of devotion), Karma Yoga (the Yoga of action), and Raja Yoga (the royal Yoga which includes Hatha, Tantra, Laya, Kundalini, and other forms of Yoga). The Agama courses give teachings on all these forms, with an emphasis on Raja Yoga and its various sub-forms. See Courses for more information.

What is Tantra?
The word Tantra is often translated as “warp,” as in the base of threads on a loom. This symbolizes the idea that all aspects of the Universe are connected like a web. Tantra is the Yoga that uses the diverse elements of manifestation – such as the body (Hatha Yoga), colors, sounds (mantra), shapes (yantra), dreams, and sexuality – to elevate the consciousness and reach spiritual realization. The word Tantra also refers specifically to the Yoga of sexuality, but technically this is too narrow a use of the term.

What is Kundalini Shakti?
Kundalini Shakti (the coiled energy) is the strongest potential force in the human being whose arousal is essential to any spiritual evolution. In the average person, it lies dormant at the base of the spine. Kundalini Yoga is the Yoga of directly awakening Kundalini Shakti and directing it up the spine to the crown center (sahasrara, above the top of the head).

Is Yoga dangerous?
Some advanced techniques of Yoga can be dangerous if practiced without proper preparation and the guidance of a qualified teacher. Fortunately, such techniques are generally inaccessible to unprepared students. For this reason, it is very important to respect the process of initiation and transmission of Yogic teachings.

Will I have a chance to learn and practice meditation?

In our regular first month intensive course we have daily short sitting meditations 10-15 minutes from day 6 of the course until the end. In the 4th week we introduce a more advanced technique using a mantra.