The first New Jersey Institute began in 1969 when a couple from Montclair asked the New York IYI for help in opening a yoga center. The classes were held in their home and their first teacher was Margabandhu Martarano. That same year, Eddie Brigati of The Rascals, opened his apartment for yoga classes and kirtan and the numbers of students grew!! In 1970 the location was moved to a loft in Garfield, which also included a thriving food co-op. By this time, there were now twenty-one teachers and thirteen classes held weekly. In 1984 the teaching staff had grown to twelve, our weekly class schedule was growing and a search began for a new location. The home for the next fourteen years was on Broadway in Elmwood Park.
A decision to purchase the present site in Fair Lawn was made in 1995, when more space was again needed for the increased classes and workshops, including Beginner and Intermediate Hatha Yoga classes, meditation courses, workshops in various aspects of health and nutrition, weekly pujas and guest speakers, Through the generous support of a long-time student of Margabandhu and other contributors, the purchase was made possible. A year later, after much renovation plus help and prayers of students and family members, we held a grand opening and dedication ceremony which our Beloved Guru, Sri Swami Satchidananda attended. Gurudev blessed our efforts and made us realize that through selfless service and hard work, the IYI would thrive through the coming years. He visited many more times and we know that all this could not have happened without his inspiration.
We currently have over twenty active volunteer teachers, offering two hatha classes per day, Monday through Saturday, and a new popular hatha class on Sunday. We offer beginner, multi-level and Intermediate Hatha classes plus weekly group Meditation and Meditation Courses. We send our teachers to many area adult schools and private classes. We have sponsored Intermediate Yoga Teacher Trainings, Meditation Teacher Trainings, Raja Yoga Teacher Training, Cardiac Yoga Teacher Trainings, as well as our annual Basic Hatha Yoga Teacher Training. We also host Samadhi Sun Yoga for Autism Teacher Training programs. We offer numerous workshops throughout the year on health, nutrition, healing through yoga, as well as satsangs on various aspects of yoga. Our guest speakers have included Viktoras Kulvinskas, Reverend Jaganath Carrera, Swamis Ramananda, Karunananda, Vidyananda, Asokananda, and Garuda Buss as well as our own Margabandhu Martarano. Our yoga communtiy/sangha enjoys a warm hospitable atmosphere in which to grow.