Kripalu came from the name of Desai’s teacher, Sri Kripalvananda who was a yoga master of Kundalini. Amrit Desai is a yoga teacher who founded the hatha yoga and the centre for yoga and wellness in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, in which Kripalu is associated. He came from India and went to United States in the year 1960.
Kripalu is a practise of hatha yoga that has a gentle approach. It strengthens both physical and spiritual being. This yoga stresses more on meditation, spiritual transformation, and physical healing that encompasses the daily lives of every individual. During the Kripalu class, students move forward with their levels of practise. The class starts with a breathing and stretching exercise, followed by series of poses and relaxation technique at the end.
In 1983, the Kripalu Centre started to operate out of its present home located in Massachusetts, in the Berkshire Mountains. Its programme continued to grow until the year 1994, when Amrit Desai engaged in unacceptable sexual intercourse with students. After suffering from great shame, he decided to leave the centre and transferred its leadership to a group of pioneer members. These authorising members started to rebuild the centre, and they expanded its classes to include a variety of different yoga styles and health wellness practises. In today’s recent times, the centre offers a varied class schedule with the presence of great famous yoga teachers of all times, teaching every students during weekends and even in weekday workshops. The workshops include massage, yoga, and even ayurvedic training for teachers.