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Maroon 5′s Levine tells yoga like it is

November 24, 2011

Hat tip to Mahamondo for this: Adam Levine from Maroon 5 on his decision to ditch the gym in favor of yoga.

Yes, a counter to the NY Times piece on the opposite trip.

Here’s the key part from this Details mag rundown:

Living the plugged-in celebrity life in Los Angeles, Levine was aware of the yoga scene but initially kept his distance, turned off by what he calls “the cheesy clichés.” But he began to worry that his gym routine was a dead end, hurting more than it helped: “Weights made my neck thick, and I would be like, ‘I’m turning into a monster!’” As he grew increasingly frustrated by lower-back pain and tight hips and hamstrings, he decided to give yoga a try. That was five years ago, and Levine hasn’t lifted a weight or entered a gym since. “Yoga takes what you have and molds and sculpts it, which is a much more natural way to look and feel,” he says.

Credit Levine with a refreshing candor about the aesthetic payoff: “I don’t like how people bullshit about how yoga is not about vanity.” Not that he doesn’t appreciate the spiritual benefits—Levine sees his routines as a therapeutic antidote to the distortions of his career. “Playing a show before thousands of people is a highly unnatural state,” he says, “and when I get on the mat to do an hour of yoga before the show, I come out physically relaxed.”

Levine, via Details

I also have to turn your attention to the write-ups of the different styles of yoga that Levine has mixed into his routine:

Ashtanga: The basis of Levine’s routine, this relatively high-speed style relies on a set sequence of poses and emphasizes continuous movements in between. May be too much for the beginner.

Vinyasa: A less intense version of Ashtanga, this focuses on synchronizing the breath with the movements that connect the poses.

Jivamukti: Combines a movement with music and Hindu spirituality. Levine steers clear of the dogma but is into the music and the physical flow.

Iyengar: A slow-moving style that is based on poses precisely held, often for extended periods of time. Dennis has created his own higher-energy version.

Anusara: This melds Iyengar’s clinical sensibility with a Hindu-derived spirituality. Levine does lots of Anusara-influenced chest-opening postures.

“Dennis” is Levine’s yoga teacher. I wonder what a “higher-energy” Iyengar is like.
Posted by Steve
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