Welcome to the Fucking Yoga Blog. You may have found your way here via the title with a little hope in your heart that someone out there wouldn’t be expounding on the benefits of yoga!
Alas, I happen to think yoga is one of those activities that promote lifelong wellness. I am, indeed, a certified yoga instructor and a cough…cough thirty-year practitioner of said activity. BUT, seriously, you knew that was coming right?!
It’s sad to say a lot of us, me included, have had a terrible, scarring yoga experience.
I will admit the topic was something of a lark for me. For the most part, I’m a fiction writer. My hubby and publishing partner, affectionately known as The Beard, has been demanding a book about yoga for AGES.
After a lengthy debate and a couple of glasses of wine, I relented shouting, “FINE! I’ll write the fucking yoga book!” After a few seconds pause, I continued, “AND I’m going to call it The Fucking Yoga Book. THAT’S the title.”
The Beard looked at me. “Seriously, The Fucking Yoga Book?”
“YES! The Fucking Yoga Book: Yoga For The 99%.”
Here’s the deal, I’m not your typical yoga teacher. Sure, I believe practicing yoga can clear your mind and lift your spirit. Yoga strengthens in a way few other activities can. If you hang in there, you’ll reach a point when yoga no longer sucks and finally begins to feel great. I also acknowledge there’s a long WTF period to get to that point.
Never mind the terror of stepping into a class of people you’re certain emblazon the cover of Yoga Journal. Never mind the hoodoo voodoo of meditating. Never mind the fact that ALL OF US are not very flexible. I’m here to reassure you there are fairly down to earth instructors out there who are happy to gently introduce you to yoga. Of course, I’m also here to assure you getting the hell out of a class that doesn’t do it for you is also a perfectly legitimate choice.
Believe me, I’ve been to my share of nightmare classes and I’ll tell you the only thing keeping me on the mat was the delightful image of me smacking the teacher upside the head. Not very zen of me, I know.
No matter your current physical condition, there’s a level of yoga for you. I have a myriad of clients with a wide variety of limitations and previous injuries. Scoliosis, knee replacement, hip replacement, neck fusion, back fusion, and the gamut of what I call the ‘Shit, I’m getting old’ aches and pains. Young clients and older clients and pregnant clients all come to my class to find a way to practice yoga.
I’m not tall, willowy, or necessarily elegant the way we imagine yoga teachers are. I am sitting on an extra twenty pounds I feel like most of us say we ‘need to lose’. My particular brand of yoga is about accessibility and healthy alignment.
There is no such thing as the perfect pose.
Don’t get me wrong. Yoga is hard. I love telling my classes after they’ve accomplished a vinyasa that “Yoga ain’t for sissies.” No one walks into their first yoga class an expert. It takes time and patience. And a good sense of humor.
What’s in this for you? I hope a realistic sense of how yoga can benefit you. The confidence to find another yoga class to try and the persistence to keep trying again and again until you find the brand of yoga for you. Oh, and more than a few good laughs because let’s face it, few things are funnier than being upside down on a mat in yoga clothes while someone is proselytizing about clearing the mind and engaging the soul when the only thing you’re thinking about is if the person next to you is staring at your extra twenty pounds.
Trust me, they’re not.