Sunday, November 28, 2010

Who Owns Yoga?

This article asks the question "who owns yoga?" in light of a small but apparently growing group in the US called Take Back Yoga who claim we've lost touch with what they believe to be the true roots of yoga: Hinduism.

"In a way," said Dr Aseem Shukla, the foundation's co-founder, "our issue is that yoga has thrived, but Hinduism has lost control of the brand." 

Another recent article regarding the identity of yoga from Clutch asks why black communities in the US have not taken up the practice as readily as white communities. It makes me sad to hear stories about students showing up to class, seeing a teacher of color, and then leaving, but I suppose it shouldn't be surprising. Race, class and gender are inescapable forces, even in yoga class. 

It's true that yoga has become, in some parts of the world, a past time for privileged people. It's expensive, it's trendy and it's filled with well meaning white people. How do we change that?

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving, Yogery!

Whatever the holiday means to you, I hope it is a delightful weekend filled with pie, movie marathons and red wine. And, of course, yoga! I'll be in Shanghai baking pies and teaching yoga this weekend, but remembering fondly T-days in Boulder with pumpkin cake, Beatles singalongs and two days of LOTR.

In light of the long weekend for those of you in the USA, I'm posting a sequence I've been teaching lately. Here's to taking some time to get on the mat!

Opening with whatever suits you.

chair twist
transitioning from chair twist into lunge
crescent lunge
dancer's pose
stepping back into warrior II
reverse warrior
side angle
back to warrior II
warrior I
twisting lunge

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Gavin Rossdale Does Bikram Yoga, WHAT?!

In sixth grade, I had a picture of him posted in my locker. Now he's a yogi? Be still, my sixth grade heart. Okay, fine, being a yogi to my sixth grade self means nothing. Happily, I find this whole thing refreshing. Now if only he was in a pose...

Full 'story' here. What's funny about it is the emphasis on him being shirtless. As if there's any other way to do Bikram yoga!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Phillip Askew's New York City Vinyasa

This video is surprisingly interactive--near the end, I found myself exhaling along with him as he settled into Savasana. Check it out:

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Are You There, Yogery? It's Me, French Toast.

Hi. I've been away. Traveling, running, writing, baking, moving to another apartment. But yoga-ing still, ever so quietly. In my own practice, the classes I'm teaching and in my life, this has been on my mind:
what do you think? fits, yeah?