"Hatha" literally means the 'Sun' "Ha" and the 'Moon' "tha". In other words, we describe the practice of Hatha Yoga as the warming (sun) up and cooling (moon) down of the body by way of postures (asanas), and meditation. "Yoga" originated in India and has been written about in many famous Indian texts including the famous Bhagavad Gita; translated as "The Song of the Lord", The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali and the Tattvartha Sutra. The direct translation of Yoga in Sanskrit comes from the root "yuj" which means "to control" or "unify". You will often hear teachers and practitioners referring to Yoga as "to yoke" or "union" and we see this union as the body, mind and spirit or heart working together to restore harmony, and equanimity, so that one feels more balanced, and connected to one's self.
T. Krishnamacharya is often referred to as "The Father of Modern Yoga" and is a great legend who pioneered Yoga in the early twentieth century to the modern world. He was born in a remote village in India in 1888 and it is believed that much of the Yoga that is practiced today stems from the teachings of this great man, whose knowledge and understanding of the practice was as vast as the number of students that he had taught. He believed as a fundamental principle that Yoga should be adapted in line with an individuals changing needs to ensure the maximum therapeutic benefits of the practice. He also maintained and he quotes "Breath is central to Yoga as it is central to life"... And Yoga is about Life."