We all know just how wonderful a regular Yoga practice makes us feel. We have heard stories about people healing from all sorts of problems – backaches, high blood pressure, PCOD, anxiety and even depression. We seem to think that Yoga is a miracle cure. While yes, Yoga does do our body and mind unmatched good, the path is not all rosy. Here’s why yoga buffs are the most annoying of all.
- Hugger People who just saw each other yesterday will hug like one of them was just rescued from a burning airplane. I’ve always thought of a hug as a slightly protracted, lightly physical way of saying hello to people I know fairly well or have not seen for a long time. Regular practitioners of yoga see hugs as a great way to spend an afternoon. You will want to stare at them and wonder, “Are they really pressing their whole bodies together?” (yes); “are their eyes closed?” (they are); “do they really have dreamy looks on their faces?” (yes, yes, yes). But remember, while you’re staring you’re wasting valuable time. To avoid: Arrive early. Lie down with closed eyes. Bring flip-flops—they’re essential for a hasty exit.
- Type-A Overachievers… there’s always at least one in every class. Then there’s the super bendy chick who I swear is descendants of gumby. And my favorite is the’I’m more spiritual than you so I bow more humbly to the almighty universal power’ longer than you. You will be doing Cat-Cow at a normal pace, and they will be bucking and heaving like mechanical bulls. You will be expending an amount of effort somewhere in between “challenging yourself” and “able to retain sufficient muscle strength to remove shampoo bottle from shower caddy.” They will be straining, grunting, grimacing. When the pose is over, they will often emit some hideous but presumably cathartic howl. I always want to say to those people, “The auditions for the high-school production of The Trojan Women are in the Lotus Room today,” but I don’t think I need to tell you that your basic yoga overachiever does not have the greatest sense of humor. Then, when class is over, and everyone does that weird little bow, the Yoga Overachiever will bow down for, roughly, an hour.
- Body odor… I’m not just talking about your typical sweat smells. Let’s just say if I lit a match the yoga room would explode…. and what’s left of it would be onions that have been left in the warm sun all day…
- There are teachers and students who think flexibility is some kind of indication of how good a person you are. While we certainly hold tension, trauma and rigidity in our limbs and joints and muscles there is no reason to imagine there’s some absolutely direct correlation between how well we can move and how functional or healthy our mind is. My point is, some physical limitations can be aided through the practice of yoga and some can’t and no one needs the increased pressure of someone telling them, every time they strain to get their heels on the floor in Downward Facing Dog that this is because their mind is all messed up.