“What’s missing from yoga?”
This was the first question I was asked on a recent podcast. It took me a moment to gather my composure because I had to process where the interviewer was coming from and realized I needed to take control of the conversation. After a moment of pause, I responded with one single word “Nothing.”
Nothing is missing from yoga and frankly, I’m tired of the conversation. It seems like every day a new fad pops up and criticizes yoga for not being enough.
Here are just a few criticisms I’ve seen floating around social media lately:
- “Passive stretching is harmful.” So let me get this straight, a relaxed position damages your connective tissue, but add a heavy kettlebell to the same position and it doesn’t?
- “Yoga has too much pushing and not enough pulling.” If pushing without pulling is so bad, why aren’t we talking about what’s missing from pushups?
- “Yoga needs to be more functional.” Pull on that thread for a while and see where it takes you.
What is your role as a yoga teacher? Is it to criticize yoga for not being enough or is it to inspire your students as you once were?
I know it’s not easy. Every time you scroll through social media there’s another post telling you what would make yoga better. Here’s the thing: People who are seeking out yoga don’t want to be a part of your industry pageantry, and they don’t come to your classes to learn to “move better.” They just want to feel better.
As yoga teachers, it’s up to us to make yoga more available when people need it most. We don’t need to “fix” it or “improve” upon it. It’s not broken and it’s not lacking anything.
The first thing I’m going to say to you on day one of yoga teacher training is not “What’s missing from yoga?” Instead, I will make a simple promise: “You will fall in love with yoga again.”
Do you remember the moment when you were transformed by yoga? I do. It wasn’t when I got to 80% MVC at end range. It was when I was finally able to cry in savasana after my mother passed.
My 300hr yoga teacher training starts soon, but I want to start now. Can you help?
All you have to do is tell your audience why they should come to yoga, not why they shouldn’t. You can start by simply sharing the moment you were transformed by yoga. Email your list or post on social media today. Tag me and I’ll share it.
Find out more about the 300hr YTT.