Thursday, December 2, 2010
True to Tradition or Crazy about Creativity?
Have you heard about all the creative ways people are trying to capitalize on the popularity of yoga in America? Sometimes it is an effort to combine two passions. Sometimes it is a way to appeal to a more diverse audience. Sometimes it is simply the result of seeking popularity or the all mighty dollar. Celina Jacobson at nursingschools.net recently posted an article about the ‘12 Worst Yoga Trends that Distort the Tradition’. Some of these concepts are bizarre, some offensive, some plain silly and some you may actually find appealing whether or not you want to admit it.
Yoga purists will dismiss these ideas as being gimmicks that detract from the essence of yoga. But others argue that there is nothing inherently wrong with marketing yoga in a pretty or provocative package. After all, this is America and people do need to make a living. My opinion is that there is room for modernization and marketing however it should be within the parameters of the original spirit of yoga. Does it seek to provide mental and spiritual wellness along with physical health? Does it adhere to the yamas and niyamas? Does it promote a deeper understanding of one’s self or does it distract us from facing our realities?
For the record, I have defended Mobile Yoga. At first I thought it was a very bad idea... yoga on skates?! Isn’t that just asking for injuries? But when I watched the video on their website, I realized that the founder is simply melding her two passions. The program is really about teaching focus, breathing and balance to those who already enjoy the vigor of skating. And much of the actual asana is done before skating. Sometimes it's not so bad to make a break from tradition.
Photo from Yoga Meditation NY
Related Post: Chocolate Yoga