Yoga is the oldest, most well-known fitness technique in the world. Although it has been practiced for thousands of years and continues to be a global phenomenon today, there are still many misconceptions about what yoga actually entails and how it can help you achieve your health goals.
The “Yoga Kali” is a yoga blog that discusses the benefits of yoga for men, women and everyone. The article discusses the benefits of utkata konasana.
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If you only had thirty seconds:
I attended my first yoga lesson in 2011. Since then, I’ve changed at least four yoga studios and performed yoga at home, on a friend’s balcony, at my Couchsurfing host’s apartment, in a park, on the beach, in the mountains, in five different countries. Less than 20% of the individuals I encountered over the course of 7 years who shared a passion of yoga were guys (I know, that’s just anecdotal evidence, but that’s how it was for me).
That must be around the same proportion of females doing weights at your neighborhood gym, I suppose.
The ‘Broga’ Times
The stereotype that yoga is “a women’s sport” continues to shape our society’s perspective. Instead of stretching and maintaining a healthy spine, men need to sweat profusely while lifting weights and then wash it all down with a drink afterwards.
Robert Sidoti and Adam O’Neill, the co-founders of the organization, made the decision to end the Western-driven mockery of male yogis and expand access to yoga for males. They had great success with their Broga (‘bro’ + ‘yoga,’ a rebranding of yoga sessions into a more male-oriented environment and instruction). Broga wants to make yoga more accessible for males who think it’s too sluggish and uninteresting and who are frightened by the gathering of flexible ladies around. Yoga’s breathing and mobility techniques are combined with physical activity and body-weight exercises in a typical Broga lesson.
Sidoti asserts that “working in” would give you the same euphoric sensation that comes from exercising as well as a profound flexibility and relaxation feeling.
The exercises are described without using any Sanskrit words, and there is familiar music playing in the background (not asanas). Many Broga instructors even go so far as to provide free beer after the lesson to spread the word about their Broga concepts (who sometimes come for hops and not yoga).
Lack of flexibility and an unknown esoteric terminology don’t sound like very good arguments for why guys choose to leave yoga out of their exercise regimen. Every girl who has never practiced yoga before struggles in a genuine and comparable way.
For instance, my first yoga class was a complete failure. I had no friggin clue how to stop arching my back and maintain it straight while pulling my hands up as others were doing headstands and hopping with their legs on the sides of their torsos for “Bakasana.” There wouldn’t be enough beer in the world to keep me going for all these years if I had considered it dull.
As a result, more men are taking up yoga to improve their health, while others profit from the “bros” who come for a drink and maybe remain, which is all good except for one issue. Are we exerting too much effort? Is this really the best course of action in a society where gender-based sports segregation has long been criticized as needless and discriminatory?
Everybody should be able to benefit from living in the present moment in a yoga class where gender roles are blurred and eliminated.
The true causes seem to be concealed deep inside. For instance, you could be afraid of being criticized for not being “manly enough” if you don’t embrace the “mindfulness” of the exercise rather than measuring your accomplishments in kilograms on your barbell.
Free beer giveaways with Radiohead playing in the background throughout class could work to draw in the inquisitive. Will they, however, keep them for a long time? In my opinion, no.
However, altering how we see the practice will.
Men need to know that practicing yoga doesn’t require them to significantly alter their lifestyle, give up drinking or smoking, or stop using profanity. You don’t need to have any “preparatory” degree of awareness before beginning either. The most important thing is to get the message out there that gender should no longer be a factor in sports and that men and women should be free to pursue their interests without fear of being labeled as “too homosexual” or “a butch.”
We always exist in a dichotomy. Our gender roles determine how we ought to act, how we ought to dress, and how we ought to appear. It is not a solution to differentiate between “brogas” and “hoegas,” deepen the gender difference, and position oneself as a hipper update of traditional practice.
Everybody should be able to benefit from living in the present now, the only place where life occurs, by blurring and erasing gender roles in a yoga session.
What are your thoughts about Broga?
Should guys be encouraged to do yoga?
Post your thoughts in the comments section!
Yoga is an ancient practice that has become increasingly popular in recent years. The “kali sadhana experience” is a yoga class designed for men, women or anyone who wants to learn more about the practice.
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