Is Yoga Broken?

There’s been a lot of chatter lately on social media about how yoga is broken and needs to be fixed. How did it break and what exactly does that mean? Yoga is not something that can be broken, but perhaps people can. I am not sure what exactly is meant by these types of statements, but as a yoga teacher I believe it’s my responsibility to share the information I have as clearly as I can, to be as present for my students as I possibly can and to be as respectful of my students as I can. In my mind, this means keeping students physically safe in their asana practice.

What I have seen over and over is that beginners who hurt themselves in yoga are quick to blame yoga – but why? Yoga didn’t break them, but perhaps whoever was teaching didn’t have the proper tools and skills to safely guide the class. This is always sad to me because yoga is not to blame – it is the manner in which it is taught. I think it’s up to the yoga teacher to create safe and nurturing environments for all of our students. This means that teachers must educate themselves about the poses and the human body, and become sensitive to your students.

One amazing tool to help achieve this is the recently announced online program that my teaching partner Eddie Modestini has created with Yoga Journal called Vinyasa 101: The Fundamentals of Flow. It’s specifically geared towards vinyasa yoga teachers and practitioners to help them keep their students and themselves safer in the practice of asana.  The program will be officially launched in September, and in the meanwhile you can check out Eddie’s blog on Yoga Journal for sneak peeks of what you’ll learn through the course. The course has also been approved by Yoga Alliance, the governing body of modern yoga certification, as part of their continuing education accreditation.

I am super proud of Eddie for all his hard work on this project and his overall dedication to the practice of Yoga! It’s time to give yoga the respect it deserves and for teachers to take responsibility for what they are teaching. Vinyasa 101 will be an invaluable resource to all teachers and students of yoga, so sign up now to reserve your spot!

Nicki Doane

Nicki Doane