Savitha quit acting to take up yoga

Savitha quit acting to take up yoga

Actor-turned-yoga practitioner Savitha Kushal is a personal trainer for many well-known people, including governor Vajubhai Vala

Savitha Kushal, an actor-turned-yoga guru believes that there nothing called power yoga, candle yoga or temple yoga.
“These are trendy terms coined by a few self-styled yoga gurus for commercial purpose. The is only actual yoga is Ashtanga yoga,” she says rather firmly.

After a gap of two decades, she has returned to acting and is busy shooting her comeback movie ‘Bharata Ratna’ which is likely to be released next April. 

“These terms are used deliberately to misguide gullible people, wanting learn the yoga for wellness and illness-free life,” says Savitha. She dons the role of a yoga guru in the film. The film also has anchor Rahaman in a prominent role.

She was a supporting actor in late 1990s and acted in Kannada films like ‘Avale Nanna Hudugi’, ‘Terikeriyeri Mele’, ‘Srirastu Shubamastu’ and ‘Dandanayaka’. She also donned many characters in over a dozen teleserials , including ‘Itihasa’, ‘Santapta’ and ‘Khedda’.

According to her, a few people have commercialised yoga, pranayama and meditation. “In Bengaluru, many are using these techniques as tools to extort money,” she opines. 

Savitha elaborates, “The major asanas in yoga are Sthiram, Sukham and Asanam. These are violated in power yoga, candle yoga and temple yoga.”

Trainees are made to perform asanas without a break. They are made to wear earphones and sometimes made to perform amidst loud music. Performing asanas this way won’t help at all.” 

“Many obtain a certificate from yoga training centre. They can’t even explain an asana properly or perform it themselves,” she says.

BKS Iyengar was a well-known yoga maharshi. I have trained under him. The eight-step yoga is called Ashtanga yoga. These steps are Yama, Niyama, Aasana, Pranayama, Pratyahara, Dharana and Samadhi,” Savitha explains. 

Iyengar and gurus like him were pained to witness the deterioration of yoga at the hands of a few people. The only way to restore faith in yoga is to create awareness about the Ashtanaga yoga, she firmly says.

Savitha hails from Hiriyur and completed her undergraduate course from Bengaluru. She did her B Ed as she wanted to be a teacher. However, destiny had other plans in store. 

“Back in 1998, I won the first prize in Aksharamale, a music reality show on Udaya TV. Soon, offers from the Kannada film industry started pouring in. I acted in films for a while. I cherish fond memories of acting alongside veterans like Devaraj and Ramesh Aravind,” Savitha recalls. However, she was soon disappointed with life in the tinsel world and bid good farewell.

“About the same time, I was suffering from severe back pain and migraine. I underwent yoga treatment under Dr Ram Rao of Government Ayurveda College. He motivated me to become a yoga guru. Later, I obtained a certificate from Vyasa Institute and learnt the yoga thoroughly under the guidance of Iyengar,” she adds.

Savitha has trained several people in the last nearly two decades. She was a yoga tutor at Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan for 13 years. She was a personal trainer for governor Vajubhai Vala and his predecessors HR Bhardwaj and Rameshwar Thakur. 

She currently conducts five batches daily, besides personal training. She has conducted many sessions free of cost for visually impaired children. Savitha can be contacted on 9845807575.