Spa Alert: Uproar re NY Times Article, “How Yoga Wrecks Your Body.” Red Flag Needed.

11 thoughts on “Spa Alert: Uproar re NY Times Article, “How Yoga Wrecks Your Body.” Red Flag Needed.

  1. Bonnie Canavino

    Greetings Suzy. Thank you for taking the time on this new fear factor. When I saw it last week when a report was going on late night TV. I thought, I’ve never seen a injury during yoga…and I’ve been doing it since the 60s. Every sport has it’s cautions, just think of those step days! All aside, there are new great findings about yoga influencing your DNA to the better and eliminating lots of chronic pain. I worry about the Hot Exercise Programs and Yoga has joined in. Your body needs to heat up on it’s own to adjust…I think there are findings to come from pushing the system to hot.
    Again Thanks, I love your blog.

  2. Nancy Griffin

    Thanks for this post, Susie. I think they chose the title for the exact reason that it would cause and uproar. I’m sure NYT got more reads and shares by causing a controversy. There is also a book coming out about Yoga making you fat — did you see Maureen Dowd’s column in the WSJ about Yoga making you fat–based on the same book by William Broad.

  3. Kathryn Stolle

    Another measured response to a potentially contentious issue brought about by half-truths engendered by the desire to make headlines? OK – my guess as to their motives, but one does wonder. I’m with you – let’s wait until the book is out to make any pronouncements and rely instead, in the meantime, on the body of evidence accumulated at http://www.spa.evidence. How many people do we know who don’t listen to their own bodies in ANY kind of workout and try to outdo everyone in their particular class? Or perhaps just aren’t mindful…..In any case, when it all dies down, I’m sure that all those who have benefited from yoga over the years will continue to enjoy this wonderful system.

  4. Matt Hanagan

    Brilliantly said. I agree with most stories, it takes a little digging to get closer to the truth. In this day and age of “digital-ADD”, It’s important for articles like this one to help illuminate the bigger picture surrounding a story and help us make more educated decisions. Thank you!

  5. Alison Howland

    Great response Susie!

    Should we look at how running wrecks your knees? How many step-class broken ankles have occurred? Football deaths?

    Too often articles only give one point of view and as I recall, there are always three sides to an issue: his side-her side-and the reality. In my opinion, its not the ‘practice’ of yoga or any other exercise, it’s instructors that aren’t well qualified and/or over-zealous beginners. Any exercise or sport has a chance of injury, it’s up to the practitioner and the instructor to be aware and maintain a progressive experience for participants/students.

    I agree about taking that collective ‘deep yoga breath’ and look at the positive reality of this thousands year old practice that has done so much good for so many.

  6. Pam Ellis

    Susie, I think you need to send a copy of your blog to NYT letters to the editor and let that person know your viewpoint. I think you made some very good points in your blog.

    It sounds as if the article really distorted the truth of the forthcoming book.

  7. Jeremy McCarthy (@jeremymcc)

    Hi Susie, great balanced perspective on this. I agree this article is biased towards the risks of yoga practice, but consider that most mainstream messaging is biased the other way, portraying yoga as 100% safe and healing. I can relate to the article because I have a herniated disc in my back myself and a typical yoga class would easily aggravate it if I am not careful.

    Ultimately, I think this article is good for yoga as it will cause both instructors and practitioners to be a bit more cautious (and perhaps realistic) with their approach to practice.

    The sad thing is that people will use this as a convenient excuse to justify why they haven’t tried yoga. Physical flourishing comes from challenging our bodies to go beyond what is normally asked of them and this always brings with it a certain amount of risk. I wonder if the book covers mindfulness as I see mindfulness in practice as a key component of listening to the body, respecting limits, and not letting the ego push us beyond where we should go.

  8. Pingback: The Yoga World Gets Judgmental | elephant journal

  9. Jeremy

    Interesting point. As someone who does Yoga, i’m suprised by this and didn’t hear about it this side of the pond. It has done nothing but improve my flexibility and well being since I have taken it up.

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