The origin of yoga can be date approximately to 5,000-year old to the Indus-Sarasvati civilization in Northern India. The ancient philosophy to guide individuals on a better pathway of life has come a long way. Today, Yoga is growing popular all over the world.  Thus, around two billion people practice yoga worldwide. Yet, suggesting and convincing doing yoga is still not an easy task. Along with its burgeoning popularity, even the myths, prejudice and stereotypes have spread like a mushroom.

Hence, to uncover the false information on Yoga and re-enlighten its reality. Here is, the

List of All The Rumors and Stereotypes of Yoga

myths, prejudice and stereotypes

1. Doing Yoga Means Doing Yoga Postures (Asanas)

We all must have seen pictures of others performing yoga asanas (postures) on their yoga mats but that is not a complete practice of Yoga. Being in the spiritual path of yoga has a lot more than doing postures. As mentioned in the Ashtanga Yoga from the Patanjali Yoga Sutras, Yoga has 8 limbs and one among them is the practice of Asanas.

2. Yoga and Meditation Is Completely Different

One of the other popular myth associated with Yoga is that yoga and meditation are two different practices. This belief must be largely due to the association of yoga with Yogic postures and asanas. However as mentioned above, along with asanas (postures) even meditation is another vital limb of yogic philosophy. In fact, one of the primary aims of practicing asanas is making our body ready and fit for meditation.

3. It Is Just A Form of Physical Exercise/Workout

While yoga is a really good form of exercise or workout for the body, it is more than just that. Yoga brings a unanimous harmony of mind, body, and spirit. It is a workout not just for the body but also the mind. The ancient technique is the tool that liberates you from your mental distortions, your false notions, the illusions; it calms your mind from those distortions and hence unites you with your highest self. In simpler terms, Yoga unites the individual consciousness with the Universal Consciousness. Read More

4. You Have To Be Super Flexible To Do Proper Yoga

Regular practice of yoga asanas makes our body flexible but one doesn’t have to be flexible to start practicing yoga. In fact, only a small portion of yoga philosophy is based on the physical postures. While the practice of yoga does need physical postures, properly performing them rather, requires one to have a calm mind and steady body. As per flexibility, one must have the attitude of pushing the body and stretch slightly more than what one feels comfortable.

5. It Is A Hippie Trend

Yoga is not about wearing mala beads, smoking weed, wearing fancy ‘pajamas’ and hugging trees. The regular practice of the technique benefits the practitioner in numerous ways which have attracted people of all shorts. So did the practice of spirituality and yogic methods attract many to India during the ’60s and ’70s. During this wave of hippie culture, many of them found solace and peace from drugs and in life through Yoga. Thus, the association.

6. It is Very Difficult To Do Yoga

The first few steps are always difficult in any journey but the way always gets easier with time and continuum. Same is the case with Yoga. Leaning anything new is always challenging, the same thing applies to yoga. However, yoga is one of the easiest things to do if you have the right zeal and attitude for it. Here, the difficult thing to do is to be in discipline. As mentioned above, yoga is also a mental workout. Thus, it is a challenging practice for the mind for than the body.

7. Only Women Practice Yoga

Having mostly women practicing yoga around has suddenly given this false notion that it is a practice only for them. However, yoga once used to be a male-only practice, especially in the USA. It was not until Indra Devi, the first woman to study yoga, opened her first studio in the U.S in 1947 that the picture began to change. Today, more than 20 million Americans practice yoga. But less than 18% of them are men. However, in the past few years, everyone from Footballers, Hollywood Celebrities, NBA Athletes to firefighters is turning to yoga, thanks to the growing popularity of its health and mental benefits it offers.

8. Pregnant Women Should Not Do Yoga

The benefits from yoga are limitless. Thus, Yoga benefits all the faculties and keeping the body systems and mind relaxed even when one is pregnant. While there are many postures and processes a pregnant woman shouldn’t be doing. However, various yogic practices and postures are highly beneficial to pregnant women which should be a must during such periods. At the same time, it is highly suggested to practice yoga under the supervision of an experienced Yoga teacher.

9. Practicing Yoga Means To Follow or Be A Hindu

Yes, the philosophy and techniques of yoga were discovered under the Hindu culture but practicing yoga doesn’t make one a Hindu. Yoga is about the self, the body, the mind, and the spirit which could/should never be associated with a particular religion. Yoga is a way of living, a tool to make the quality of life better. It is a holistic scientific approach to living life fully which transforms the whole individual.

10. Anyone Can Learn Yoga From Books, Videos or Internet

Having a guidance, a teacher, a master always makes life easier. Similarly, having a proper guidance in yoga will accelerate one’s growth, point out the flaws and give a proper direction and instructions to perform. The vast amount of information on yoga found in the books and the internet can always be used for an additional knowledge, this should never be taken as the primary guidance for this path. This impulsive way of learning without guidance has caused damages to them in some cases irreversible damages. Yoga might seem to be very simple, but you need proper direction from a Yoga Guru or trained Yoga teacher with experience to head towards the right direction in the path.

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