As a Yoga instructor, I always keep abreast of current fitness trends or new findings. It has come to light that I have now read on more than one occasion that Yoga is bad for you! I can forgive one or two articles supporting this as it must get quite boring to hear constantly from us Yogi’s that Yoga is wonderful and can do miraculous things. Cure cancer and re- grow an amputated limb if practised regularly enough……..well maybe in the Harry Potter version of Yoga, but you get the picture.
So one or two articles on how Yoga is bad for you to mix it up, and to give a different view point to cause some controversy on the subject I can understand, it makes things interesting. But there was just one too many articles for me to keep my mouth shut.
There are horror stories of military type Yoga teachers and military type students that take Yoga a little too far. For example holding a fish pose for over half an hour!! Dedicated student or dedicated idiot!? I have heard Yoga instructors telling their students to push pass the pain. Well just as a heads up, if a pose causes pain instead of just challenging your body, then it is your body’s way of saying STOP!! Anatomy and Physiology rule 101, basics that every instructor should know.
Yoga needs to be taken to a level that is suitable to each individual. Some people might be able to achieve a pose that others cannot. Some, no matter how much they practice, might not ever get into a specific pose. You have to accept what your body is capable of and push it accordingly. In my classes I always say, choose a level that is suitable for you, do not worry about what everyone is doing around you, Yoga is not a competition, it is a practice that is suppose to reflect positively on you.
Conclusion, anything done to an excess is bad for you, anything not done properly is bad for you. I think that applies to life in general not just sport. So is Yoga bad for you? NO! Not if taught and practise in the correct manner. There are only mis-guided instructors and students who have mis-understood Yoga. Yoga is like a finger print, the practise and result is different for everyone, but the positive impact of Yoga is the same, it just different levels of.
So please, if we need to mix it up because constant positive praise of Yoga is getting mundane to the ears, then let’s try and say something a little more feasible and not just some fluff that sells papers.
Yoga & Pilates Instructor
Director of Travel and Tone
Enlightened ex-city manic who found herself again