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Meet the Innovators: Patricia Walden

Graceful, disciplined, and serene, Walden is one of the most accomplished yoga practitioners in America today.

By Holly Hammond

Thousands of Americans have begun yoga practice with Patricia Walden in their living rooms. She is featured in four of Yoga Journal's videos, including Yoga for Beginners, which has sold more than 1.3 million copies, making it one of America's best-selling yoga videos. Walden is the image of the perfect yogini: graceful, disciplined, and serene. She is one of the most accomplished yoga practitioners in America today and an expert on yoga for women.

Walden met Mr. Iyengar in 1976. "I immediately knew he was going to change my life," she says. She travels to Pune every year to study with the Iyengars. She directs the B.K.S. Iyengar Yoga Center of Greater Boston and teaches and trains teachers throughout the world. She is a contributor to A Guide to Women's Health through Yoga by former Yoga Journal managing editor Linda Sparrowe, to be published by Shambhala in 2002, and is working on a new book with John Schumacher.

"The role of women in spiritual traditions has often been secondary," notes Walden. "Today in America women are playing key roles in the evolution of yoga—as practitioners, teachers, writers, philosophers, and entrepreneurs. Thanks in part to the influence of Geeta Iyengar, we are learning to adapt yoga to our needs, so we can use asana to help us through each stage of life—menstruation through menopause—with grace, equanimity, and self-understanding."

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