What makes something “yoga”? We find that modern postural yoga is neither a direct continuation or a corruption of any single pre-modern tradition. Instead, like all complex cultural phenomena, it is the product of a process of reinterpretation, recombination, and synthesis. This talk focuses on spiritual breath and movement practices as they existed in North America and Europe on the eve of yoga’s worldwide popularisation in the early twentieth century. We compare and contrast these with the yogic practices of contemporary India. How have these two systems intertwined and blended to produce the global practice we call “yoga” today.