Are these your next yoga pants?

I wasn’t going to pass this on until I noticed two things:

  1. The first store is going to open in Mysore, so I’ll take a leap and guess they have Ashtanga in mind. (Goa and Pune are among the next ones.)
  2. And there was this in the “about” part: “It has taken designs from ancient India and recreated them using cutting edge technology to make them relevant to our modern day yoga practice.”

So, OK, I’ll bite. I’m curious what all the yoga-wear makers have been missing.

And I’ll back up. The company touting this is called IKA Yoga Wear Pvt. Ltd and the product that will marry ancient designs with cutting-edge technology is called Proyog.

It gets better. According to the company, there hasn’t been a real set of clothes designed for yoga yet:

Co-founder and Product Head, Malika Baruah asserts, “Yoga wear across the globe has been largely sportswear in disguise. None of the global brands have paid attention to the specific needs and requirements of yoga. 95% of the market comprises of polyester and nylon products that are antithetical to yoga. Proyog, on the other hand, has stayed true to yoga wherein every product is designed to enhance the practice. It is very unlikely that a yoga practitioner will go back to anything else after having tried Proyog.”

I’m thinking that’ll come as news to a few companies out there.

I will applaud one part of IKA Yoga Wear’s mission: “The company is intent on demonstrating to the world, India’s ability to design and manufacture best-in-class products in the multi-billion dollar yoga wear market.” In other words, it wants to lift up part of India’s economy — and do so within a business sector of which the country ought to have a big piece.

Not surprisingly, the company’s launching on June 21 — International Day of Yoga.

Posted by Steve

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Bill to ‘ban yoga pants’ is dead

You don’t need to worry about wearing yoga pants in Montana — for now.

As we mentioned last week, a legislator in the state — in response to a naked bike ride — had tried to update the state’s indecency laws. And he was quoted as saying that yoga pants ought to be illegal, too.

Well, not to worry — his bill died in committee:

Members of the House Judiciary Committee voted unanimously to table House Bill 365, which Rep. David Moore introduced Tuesday.

The proposal would have expanded the definition of indecent exposure to include garments that give the appearance of a person’s buttocks, genitals, pelvis or female nipple.

The Republican from Missoula said he wouldn’t have a problem with people being arrested for wearing such provocative clothing such as tight-fitting beige garments. Moore also said yoga pants should be illegal.

Although members of the committee giggled about the bill, no discussion was allowed before a voice vote to table it.

I won’t be surprised if the next nude bike ride goes down Moore’s street.

Update: He’s claiming it was a joke. But really it might not have been.

Posted by Steve

Finally, someone is trying to ban yoga pants

A lawmaker in Montana has introduced a bill that would make illegal (indecent exposure) if a person “knowingly or purposefully exposes the person’s genitals, pubic hair, or anus or exposes the areola or nipple of the person’s 19 breast with anything less than a fully opaque covering while in a public place or visible from a public place without 20 taking reasonable precautions to prevent exposure, and disregards whether a reasonable person would be 21 offended or alarmed by the act.” You also couldn’t wear something like looks like a your naughty bits. (Breastfeeding in public would be OK.)

And while yoga pants wouldn’t be banned, Rep. David Moore wants them to be:

The Republican from Missoula says tight-fitting beige clothing could be considered indecent exposure under his proposal. He says he wouldn’t have a problem with people being arrested for wearing provocative clothing but that he’d trust law enforcement officials to use their discretion.

Moore says he believes yoga pants and men’s Speedo-style swim briefs should be illegal in public.

An AP story has a quote on that from him: ““Yoga pants should be illegal in public anyway,” Moore said after the hearing.” We may have just solved Santa Monica’s revenue problem (if it has one).

You’ll be relieved to know, I’m sure, that yoga pants are not the real culprit here. Apparently Moore is reacting to a “Bare as you Dare bicycle event” from last summer. You can guess what that was about. Also from the AP story:

“I want Montana to be known as a decent state where people can live within the security of laws and protect their children and associates from degrading and indecent practices,” Hill said Tuesday in support of the measure. “I believe this bill is written preserving that reputation.”

That quote is from a retired professor in Missoula.

Hat tip to Talking Points Memo.

Posted by Steve

‘What should you expect when you come to the mat for an Ashtanga practice?’

With the big news in the blogging world right now being the Friday end of one of the original blogs — Andrew Sullivan’s The Dish — I thought I’d go a bit old-school and link over to a couple of other blogs, like they did in the old days.

The old days being 2006 or so.

(If you want, you can search for “blogging is dead” to get the latest take on what is arguably the only new medium created by the Internet.)

As our updated Mission statement says, focusing on what other blogs are saying is something we let others (in many cases via social media) handle. We’re more interested in trying to unearth something you won’t find otherwise — or won’t have pushed into your social media feed.

These two pieces, perhaps, fall somewhere in between. Up first is an overview look at Ashtanga from The Yoga House, which gives you a from-the-outside view (or, at least, a view geared toward those on the outside):

There isn’t quite a more disciplined yoga practice than that of Ashtanga Yoga. There is very often a cloud of mystery around the meditative practice that might make some uneasy at the site of its listing on a studio’s schedule. To most it seems more physically demanding and rigid than other yoga practices. And the truth is, well, it can be, but in reality Ashtanga yoga is the very foundation for all styles of hatha yoga. Based on a systematic series of asanas, or postures, the Ashtanga format and postures are the building blocks for the different yoga practices that each of us know and love.

[snip]

To help keep our focus on our inner development and not the external, there is the deliberate incorporation of what student of Pattabhi Jois, David Swenson, calls “The Internal World,” which consists of breath, locks, flow and gaze, or prana, bandha, vinyasa and drishti, to guide us through this moving meditation. The sound of the breath is your mantra, the rhythm that keeps a single pointed focus for the mind. The locks and bandhas assimilate the prana or life force and help feed the subtle body and balance the gross nervous system.

It strikes me as a pretty fair representation.

The second treads on territory I’ve heard Tim Miller discuss a lot: merging karma and Ashtanga yoga, with a root for the discussion in the Gita. It’s via It’s Yoga Nicaragua:

Ashtanga yoga asana practice is unique in its daily return to a set, familiar sequence of postures. The sequence is prescribed rather than chosen, a series of actions the devoted practitioner performs as a daily discipline. There is an implicit surrender in the adherence to this practice, an unspoken contract between the tradition and the practitioner in which the practitioner agrees to give up their right to choose. The very nature of this practice, then, lends itself to the cultivation of karma yoga.

Mindset, however, remains key. While the practice can be used to learn surrender, it can also be used to invite the opposite effect. To move through the postures every day with an attitude of achievement or performance is to take a step backward, away from the yoga of action. It’s not easy, however, for a daily practitioner to last long without stumbling upon the necessity of detachment. In a lifelong practice, the body is bound to experience changes. The physical practice will fluctuate. Postures will come and go, difficulties will arise where there was once ease, and contentment will replace discomfort. Every day on the mat is different. To remain attached to one result is an exercise in futility.

The physical practice, then, becomes one of acceptance.

From there it goes off the mat, as you might expect.

And I’ll finish up a tristana of sorts by pointing you toward Christianity Today’s fairly lengthy thought piece on the whole notion of not wearing yoga pants. It at least doesn’t treat the whole thing as a farce. Or maybe I should say: Why doesn’t it treat the whole thing as a farce?

Posted by Steve

 

Yoga news: A whole mess of awful

Typically I’ll ignore the wacky and stupid yoga stories that come across my patented yoga teletype machine, but on Tuesday there were too many to ignore:

The only legit one is that Colorado may wade into the whole “licensing yoga teachers” issue. Here’s coverage from the Denver Post:

As the demand for yoga continues to grow in this fitness-happy state, the question of whether certain yoga classes need to be government certified has costly implications that critics say will drive small operations out of business.

The potential stressor in the studio comes after a yoga teacher complained that only six yoga teacher-training studios were following an oft-ignored 2002 law that required they be certified with the state. In response, the Division of Private Occupational Schools mailed out 82 letters, asking program operators to provide a brief summary of their operation, a copy of a school catalog and brochure and their recruiting materials.

[snip]

Colorado began regulating yoga teacher-training studios in 2002, said Lorna Candler, director of the Division of Private Occupational Schools, which is part of the Department of Higher Education.

“We are not targeting yoga schools or the yoga community,” she said. “This is about teacher-training programs.”

Yogis wonder what’s next. Do state standards apply to those who teach a spinning class? What about Zumba? Or step classes?

If tuition is collected with the intent of training someone to get a job and teach that particular skill, then the program would probably need to be certified, Candler said.

The Yoga Alliance, a nonprofit trade organization that represents yoga interests, is fighting the state over certification and has hired Squire Patton Boggs to represent its interests.

Maybe one to watch. Also one to watch: When 300 dogs do do yoga together.

Posted by Steve

Sales of jeans tumble, and you can guess why: Yoga pants

Here’s a story that seems to be delighting the media, judging by the number of stories posted in the past few hours: Yoga pants are killing jeans.

Not literally. But there does seem to be some correlation between the increase in sales of yoga pants and a decrease in denim purchases.

Here’s from the Associated Press story (found at Newsday):

To be sure, the jeans business isn’t dead: Customer Growth Partners, a retail consultancy, estimates denim accounts for 20 percent of annual sales at the nation’s department stores.

But sales of jeans in the U.S. fell 6 percent to $16 billion during the year that ended in June, according to market research firm NPD Group, while sales of yoga pants and other “active wear” climbed 7 percent to $33.6 billion.

And Levi Strauss, which invented the first pair of blue jeans 141 years ago, is among jean makers that acknowledge their business has been hurt by what the fashion industry dubs the “athleisure” trend. That’s led them to create new versions of classic denim that are more “stretchy” and mimic the comfort of sweatpants.

I can’t get this scenario out of my head:

Scruffy gunslinger slaps his whiskey down on the saloon’s bar and settles his hat on his head. He kicks back the stool, and arranges his holster low on his hips and brushes some dust from the front of his jeans.

“Thanks, barkeep,” he mutters, as he turns and walks to the swinging wood doors.

As he pushes the doors open and steps out into the bright, hot sun (we’re in West Texas, probably), he shades his eyes with his left hand; his right hangs loosely near one of his pistols.

Before he can look around, though, he’s slugged on top of the head with a Manduka yoga mat (the black mat pro), and he crumbles in a heap on the saloon’s wood patio.

“Namaste,” the cheery, yoga-pants wearing young woman says, as she heads off to the Haute Yoga studio next door.

Posted by Steve

Stephen Colbert names Lululemon’s CEO his ‘Alpha Dog of the Week’

“Hear that ladies, divorce is your fault.”

And that’s actually among the least offensive things you’ll hear in video from Monday night’s the The Colbert Report.

So enjoy at this link. (WordPress fail on getting it to embed.)

It includes mention of the “heart-felt” statement we noted earlier.

Posted by Steve