Biography of Dr. Mala Singh
Dr. Mala first got introduced to Hatha yoga as a graduate student in the year 1982 at the Banaras Hindu University. Seeing her passionate involvement with yoga, her yoga teacher Mrs Das who was trained in the Sivananda tradition, remarked, “you should continue doing yoga. I can always see the glow of inner peace within you, after a yoga session ”. Dr. Mala continued her practice throughout her stay at B.H.U while she finished her M.A. in Philosophy and enrolled for a Ph.D in philosophy. Even at this stage her main aim of doing yoga was to find inner balance and peace alongwith fitness. She completed her Ph.D in 1993 and soon after was awarded a 2 year Junior Research Fellowship (JRF) from the Indian Council of Philosophical Research. As a requirement for the JRF she took up teaching philosophy to graduate students in the University of Allahabad.The year 1997 brought her to Military station in Wellington, a hill station near Ooty in south India. In Wellington, she became an expert horse rider and an avid golfer. She participated twice in the ceremonial Ooty Hunt Club rides.
After a year when she moved to Trivandrum, in the southern state of Kerala,Dr. Mala joined the Sivananda Yoga center in Trivandrum in 1998. After completing the advanced level course, Encouraged by the power of yoga, on the advice of the Head at the Trivandrum center, she enrolled for the Teachers Training Course (TTC) at the Sivananda Ashram at Neyyar Dam, near Trivandrum in January 2000. She was away from her family for a full month to practice intensive sadhna, yoga asanas and kriyas alongwith more than 100 other yoga enthusiasts from all over the world.
Since February 2000, Dr. Mala has been teaching and sharing the knowledge of yoga in the Sivananda Hatha yoga lineage. She started her yoga classes at Trivandrum in her house with a few students. A year later she moved to Melbourne, Australia and soon had a dedicated group of Australian students keen to learn yoga from an Indian teacher. Some of her students who had tried some other yoga centers earlier but did not continue, remarked after a few classes that they found her teaching style very comfortable, relaxing and it helped them physically as well as emotionally. As her circle of yoga community grew in Australia, she was invited on a regular basis to some Yoga centers in and around Melbourne for lectures on Indian philosophy, philosophy of yoga and demonstration of asanas. Dr. Mala developed a regular association for lecture cum demonstration session, with the Dharma Yoga Health center in East Bent Leigh, Melbourne and the Greenfield Yoga Centre in Kew.
After her return to India in March 2002, Dr. Mala founded the “Aatmadarshan Yoga & Philosophy Foundation”, (ADYP) to propagate and share the knowledge of yoga and Indian philosophy. The motto of her center and the main theme of her teachings are “Know thyself”. While her teaching style remains the classical yoga in the Sivananda lineage, Dr. Mala encourages each student to discover his or her own path on the journey of yoga or union of the body, mind and spirit. According to Dr. Mala who relates her own experience, each individual’s experience with yoga is different and one has to know it by regular practice. Her advice to her students is “do yoga, remain healthy, balance your family life, career and know yourself”. Dr. Mala encourages her students to become independent in their yoga practice and “become like a tree, not a creeper”.
At her ADYP center yoga courses are available at 3 levels – Beginners, Intermediate and Advanced. Individual classes in therapeutic yoga are also available. Dr. Mala combines yoga asana practice with the some time for yoga philosophy discussion also in each session. For those who want to delve deeper into philosophy of yoga, she holds separate workshops apart from her regular classes at the ADYP center. Dr. Mala has held yoga workshops in schools, Madarsas, clubs, Government departments, villages and jails in Delhi, Azamgarh, Mau and other cities in India. Every summer she conducts kid’s yoga camp at the ADYP center.
Dr. Mala has special skills for therapeutic Yoga to provide relief through both creative and preventive methods. Her expertise has helped many to get back to healthy and balanced life style and is able to practice regular yoga asanas and pranayams.
Currently Dr Mala is based in London, till October 2013.