"Though we in the competition-squeamish yoga community have been repeatedly assured that yoga competitions are historically common in India, your first time can be shocking. That was my experience at least, at the Hudson Theater in Midtown Manhattan, watching the 2012 United States Yoga Asana Championship, New York Regional edition. My shock started at the door, where instead of being handed a ticket, a woman slashed a bright blue "X" on my right hand with a Sharpie (instant college keg party flashback). Then a Bikram-heavy marketplace greeted us, an orgy of teeny shorts and bra tops in many colors."
Don't know if this article was supposed to be serious, but the title made me laugh. "The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not winning but taking part; the essential thing in life is not conquering but fighting well" said Pierre Coubertin. Still Far from the yoga practice.
“In the end, it is not Western scientific knowledge of the human body that will make Yoga safer. Changing the students approach to the discipline of yoga and the practice of asana will create the greatest shift.”
Yoga can be extremely beneficial, but it also can be quite dangerous. Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist William Broad examines the pleasures and pitfalls of the practice in his latest book, The Science of Yoga.
Broad’s objective is simple enough: to evaluate in scientific terms the claims made for yoga. But this turns out to be more complicated than it seems. For one thing, there are the sheer number and variety of those claims: yoga, it is said, can prevent heart disease, reverse aging, eliminate pain, and bestow serenity and peace. Broad patiently and exhaustively examines the evidence for each of these assertions, revealing surprises along the way.
The San Francisco International Airport continues its quest to make itself its own destination. The airport has just opened a yoga room for harried travelers seeking a moment of peace following airport security.
In Terminal 2, serving Virgin America and American Airlines passengers, SFO’s “Zen Room” is reportedly the first of its kind.
The yoga community is on the defensive and they’ve already made some pretty pointed counters [Is The New York Times Wrecking Yoga? The Community Responds] to the New York Times article heard round the yoga world.
"A human being is part of a whole, called by us the Universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings, as something separated from the rest – a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty."
Hospitals can now bill Medicare for their patient's yoga and group discussion sessions because the Ornish program is an approved intensive cardiac rehab program, a new class of cardiac rehab created by Congress in 2009. Traditional cardiac rehab, developed in the 1950s and covered by Medicare since 1982, focuses almost exclusively on exercise -- getting patients out of bed and the blood flowing again.
Yoga Journal estimates that Americans spend over $5 billion a year on yoga classes and products. And this should come as no surprise -- yoga is credited with lifting moods, revitalizing sex and reducing stress. But a recent New York Times Magazine article focused on how yoga can also cause serious injury. We discuss the safe practice of yoga.
The yoga community is strong-willed and strongly opinionated, so of course a story like this slapped in the Old Grey Lady with a head-turning title (pun intended) wouldn’t go without a response, including our own. So what happens when you go throwing around anecdotal examples of yoga’s injurious nature to a crowd of yoga practitioners, teachers, and tertiary supporters?
Read on for full responses and perspectives from Iyengar Yoga teacher Roger Cole (who was [mis]quoted in the article), Ph.D., NYC’s legendary Ashtangi Eddie Stern, followed by Physical Therapist Marshall Hagins and chiropractor Rick Bartz. [update: more from Perter Ferko,
Then again, if we naively accept that yoga (as in asana) is all-healing and that you don’t have to be conscious while practicing, just relenting your body to the powers or the power-driven teachers that be, then we’re setting ourselves up for a world of pain.