Updated: Mar 23, 2019
Yoga without the BS
Let me be clear from the start, I LOVE yoga! I love everything about it, the movement, the stretching, the relaxation and my daily practice. Let’s get real for second though, there has been a major shift in the way yoga is taught. The classes and descriptions have become more confusing than a fancy coffee order and this is making it harder to find a class I love; one is hot but not too hot, one uses props, one plays good traditional music (what’s that), one has a great atmosphere, one has an oxygen machine in the lobby! Bottom line, yoga is a business and the classes need people to make money so they have to differentiate themselves, but where are the classes I fell in love with? I know that if I feel this way there must be more people with the same thoughts. Maybe this is one of the reasons why some people do not like yoga, every class is bunched into a genre, yet they are all so different. I practice yoga as a workout, so a class with a teacher giving me a spiritual sermon is not going to resonate with me when I paid for a workout.
This leads me to the title of this post. I don’t think that spiritualism is bullshit, I don’t discount any passion that a teacher brings to a class whether in Sanskrit or English, I only have a problem with combining it with a more western mentality. The point is, teach me a great yoga class but don’t blast rock music, add weights, pulse in positions or even say “It’s like yoga, but it’s a workout”. What does that mean, when the name of the class is YOGA? (See my post What’s in a name). Also, I know life could be stressful at times, but as a more positive person, sometimes the sermons can sound like cult indoctrination; no thank you. If I expect to flow through my asanas, yet have to hold plank for 10 minutes, do 100 push-ups and jog on my mat while holding weights, then my expectation have not been met. I am unhappy with the marketing, money machine that has forced great teachers to throw their training out the window to make money. I am also shocked at how many certified instructors are not confident enough to come out of training and actually teach a class. In the fitness world, you take a certification to learn to teach other people, not yourself. You are expected to already be familiar with the workout, but ultimately as a trainer you will teach others. I researched certifications for years and could never find one that taught what I was looking for; the ability to share a safe, effective workout with my students.
You can only imagine how I felt as a professional in the fitness industry. Of course, I wanted to get certified myself in yoga, I personally love it and I know all my clients would, but this is where I called bullshit. If you read my post, What’s in a name, you understand why all fitness should not be bunched into one category, especially if there are so many extreme variations of the workout. Call it something else if it does not follow a traditional method. Although I personally enjoy some of the other aspects that come with a yoga training, I could not understand how they would make me a better teacher or how they would benefit my clients. I want to move, my students want to move, we want to feel good and look good and the BS would not get us there. Again, I do not think these other aspects are bullshit, I only know they would not add benefit to people who wanted to move. They do not make you do exercises better or help you achieve goals faster, they are engrained into a philosophy that has been decoded to fit each individual certification.I also learned a staggering statistic that 50% of certified yoga teachers were coming out of schools and were not ready to teach. What???? For me, I do not need any of the additional training for me to teach a safe and effective class, intelligent, results driven class, and as a certifier of other instructors, they don’t have to either- we have NOGA!
It is time to evolve, it is time for a change, it is time to move without the BS and start to look and feel great. Noga will get you there. All instructors are taught to teach each individual body in the class and there is no ego, only transformation. Join the movement and see what all the hype is about.