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Yoga Insider

Welcome to The Yoga Insider, a monthly publication by Yoga Alliance compiling the most current news about yoga. Browse the news by category and check out the archived editions to your right.

Edition 5 | October 2014

Published on October 16, 2014

Business

News about the small and big companies alike as well as the money side of yoga industry.

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Community

General stories regarding RYT®s, RYS®s and non-members active in the yoga community.

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Education

What’s happening with yoga and meditation in schools and how students learn.

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Health & Research

How yoga affects the body and mind.

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Inspiration

Stories about yoga that make you smile, motivate you, or words of wisdom.

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Legal & Government

These stories discuss how legal professionals handle yoga issues in the government.

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Practice

How yoga is used in daily life by long-time gurus, newcomers and everyone else in between.

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Sports

Chronicling the growth of yoga among athletes and athletic programs.

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YA in the News

News media outlets mention Yoga Alliance® or quote our representatives.

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Business

Connecting Your Yoga Widgets and Digits

  • CNET reports the company SmartMat designed a responsive yoga mat featuring “Bluetooth pressure sensors” that track yogis' alignment/balance and offer real time adjustments seamlessly via SmartMat's corresponding app for iOS and Android." SmartMat co-founder Neyma Jahan: “We built SmartMat because we wanted a way to receive personalized yoga instruction without having to go to an outside class or hire a private teacher.” (September 30)
  • Washington Times reports on a new social networking site called DaoCloud geared toward the holistic health care community. “The site is also attracting a more mainstream crowd: physical therapists, yoga instructors, personal trainers, massage therapists, chiropractors — and their potential clients.” (October 5)


Community

Spreading the Power of Yoga, One Community at a Time

  • NBC-Miami featured during a television broadcast Miami-based yoga instructor Sharon Aluma, E-RYT 200, offering an “organic Vinyasa” yoga lesson to reporter Roxanne Vargas. (September 29)
  • Texas A&M University Battalion profiled Texas A&M senior Jennifer Boone, RYT 200, who, “after noticing the small yoga community [at college]… decided to take a yoga teacher training” on weekends while a full-time student. She now teaches a Prana Flow-based practice at Yoga Pod in College Station, Texas. (October 8)
  • Telegram (Mass.) reports marathoners and yoga teachers Kristin Borowski, RYT 200, and Nari Malkhasyan, RYT 200, help runners heal and strengthen their bodies through yoga classes designed for runners. Borowski and Malkhasyan agreed that yoga helps runners “temper the mentality that tells them to push through pain – and into injury.” (October 8)
  • Green Bay Press-Gazette (Wis.) profiled Robin Lardinois, RYT 200, and her Oct. 9 opening of Enso Yoga Studio in Green Bay. (October 7) A spokesperson from Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt’s office told Yoga Alliance® the mayor attended the opening ceremony. (October 15)
  • Los Angeles Times reporter Mary MacVean reports about her experience with YogaScape, created by Earth's Power Yoga owner Steven Metz, E-RYT 500. MacVean writes that the class is “unexpectedly down to earth and a satisfying ‘immersive experience’ that left me tired and my skin feeling great.” (October 3)
  • Northern View (British Columbia) profiled yoga instructor Mandy Lawson's, RYT 200, move back home to western Canada from Costa Rica to lead three yoga fundraisers after taking a teacher training course "in the jungle at Anamaya Retreat Center." (October 1)
  • Philly.com profiled Kristine McCreary, RYT 200, and the opening of her yoga studio, AntiGravity Yoga Lab, the "first" of its kind in Pennsylvania. (October 15)


Education

The Kids Are, in Fact, Quite Alright…

  • Houston Chronicle reports "yoga-based health and wellness classes are coming to a dozen campuses in the Houston Independent School District this fall thanks in part to a grant from the California-based Sonima Foundation. The nonprofit donated at least $360,000 for the program." (September 22)
  • Good Magazine profiled the San Francisco-based R.I.S.E. Yoga for Youth organization, which raised $31,000 in one month to put toward its mission of bringing “yoga and wellness programs into area schools. … The program is now available in 12 school sites, after a 2012 pilot program at San Francisco’s Mission High School.” (September 29)
  • Associated Press reports 20 students are "enrolled in a new yoga class offered at Bethel High School" in Bethel, Connecticut. Health teacher Stacie Kaye, RYT 200, "created and teaches the course." (October 5) Kaye, in an email to Yoga Alliance®, wrote that the program is not "state approved," contrary to the AP story. It is approved by the Bethel Board of Education "'but it meets all state and national standards for Health and Physical Education.'" (October 15)
  • Sun-Times (Ill.) reports yoga instructor Debbie Woods, RYT 200, leads an after-school yoga class that "started last year" at South Glenbrook South High School and Glenbrook High School District 225 in Glenview and Northbrook. Glenbrook South student Brian Filipiak; on how yoga helped him on a physics test: "It was the breathing, I believe. It helped me relax and I got an A on the test." (October 8)
  • Minnesota Public Radio reports teachers at River Bend Education Center in Minneapolis "try yoga and other strategies to help children control their own emotions. They hope that some can leave the school's locked corridors eventually and return to a traditional classroom." Student mother Eulondra Powell said yoga "helps the kids 'find out how to express themselves without anger.'" (October 13)


Health & Research

Who Wouldn’t Love Seeing “Yoga” on a Prescription Note?

  • Detroit Free-Press reports on the benefits of yoga and other low-impact activities in relieving joint pain and stiffness. Karma Yoga instructor Lynn Medow, E-RYT 500: "You're breathing and moving and you may hear a few words or directions to help prevent injury, but you do it almost automatically. That's how the body, on a very deep level, begins to release stress and tension.” (September 27)
  • Los Angeles Times reports that researchers say yoga can help prevent winter-related illnesses like the flu and bronchitis by managing stress. They “concluded that yoga helps the body resist the impairment of cellular immunity during stressful events.” (October 3)
  • Marshfield News Herald (Wis.) referenced a clinical trial, conducted by The Annals of Internal Medicine, which reports about the therapeutic benefits of viniyoga for back pain. Viniyoga emphasizes a close teacher-student connection and “adapting the program to suit the…individual student” is a key component of the practice. (October 7)
  • TIME reports about the link between meditation and "improved mood and lower rates of heart disease, insomnia and depression." Yale School of Medicine psychiatrist Dr. Judson Brewer: "Basically, meditation helps your brain get out of its own way." (October 9)
  • CBS News featured a video interview with Nikki Myers, E-RYT 500, founder of Yoga of 12 Step Recovery, as part of a 14-day series. Myers, on reconnecting with her body: "Part of [drug] use was to get … far away from this body. Yoga gave me this way to safely … come back inside [my] body." (October 14)


Inspiration

A Little Reflection Goes a Long Way

  • Huffington Post contributor Peggy Nolan, RYT 200writes in a two-part series, "How Yoga Saved My Life", that yoga helped her through divorce and breast cancer.
    Nolan: "Through chemotherapy, my inner yogini quietly coaxed what little my body could give. She made me dig deep and helped me discover the place within myself where the Divine resides and where I am at peace. I battled with loneliness -- and cancer is a very lonely disease -- only to uncover that by accepting my loneliness I found a freedom and liberation that transformed my perspective on living my own life. Laying in savasana, or dead man's pose, my arms and legs stretched out in relaxation, I found that my someday is now and now is all I have." (October 14)
  • Huffington Post contributor and Reconceiving Loss co-founder Tara Shafer writes that she used yoga to cope with the death of her stillborn second child. Shafer: "In the months following my son's death, yoga enabled a pathway for me to experience myself in my body again. In a rich and saffron-hued yoga studio, lit in the evening with candles, I learned to stay in a moment even as I yearned to escape it." (October 13)


Legal & Government

At the Crossroads of Lobbying and Half Moons

  • Associated Press reports Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi encouraged the recognition of International Yoga Day during his in his first address to the U.N. General Assembly on Sept. 27 in New York City. (September 27) Modi, via CNN: “I’m fortunate that I’ve been introduced to the world of Yoga… yoga synchronizes the heart, the mind and the body.” (September 19)
  • Times of India reports U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii) "has said that she would help" the U.S. Congress "pass a resolution" supporting International Yoga Day. (October 3)
  • Washington Post interviewed Washington, D.C. Office of the Chief Financial Officer public affairs officer David Umansky about the impact of Washington, D.C.’s new “sales tax extension” on yoga studios, which went into effect Oct. 1. Umansky, on why the tax should apply to yoga studios: “The language of the imposition statute includes in the definition of health clubs ‘other facility[ies] for the purpose of physical exercise.’ This language is broad enough to cover yoga studios.” (October 1)


Practice

There’s Got to Be Something in Here for You Somewhere…

  • Baltimore Sun highlights several yoga studios in the greater Baltimore area offering non-traditional yoga classes for niche markets, such as children’s yoga, yoga with wall-mounted straps and yoga for addiction recovery. The story quotes Yoga Center of Columbia, RYS 200, RYS 300, RPYS, owner and director Kathy Donnelly, E-RYT 500, and Lasting Light owner Kelly Neylan, RYT 200, RCYT, RPYT, among others. (October 2)
  • Boston.com profiled various styles of yoga with the help of Boston-based yoga instructors Siga Bielkus and Vyda Bielkus, E-RYT 500. (September 27)
  • Wall Street Journal reports on the “geek-fitness movement,” which includes “Nerd Yoga” classes offered in Florida by Lacy Emiba, RYT 200. Separately, YogaQuest instructors Jenny Milos and Justine Mastin, E-RYT 200, “set yoga routines in their Minneapolis studio to fan-fiction narratives based on nerdy TV shows, books and movies.” (September 30)
  • Daily Beast interviewed TV director David Lynch about his foundation aiming to heal through Transcendental Meditation (TM). Lynch is working on a documentary about TM teacher Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. (October 6)
  • La Crosse Tribune (Wis.) highlighted yoga teacher Emily Sustar, RYT 200, leading an outdoor Vinyasa class "for Yoga on the Lawn" at a local YMCA for National Yoga Month in September. "National Yoga Month was established in 2008, and was designated by the Department of Health and Human Services as one of just a few national health observances." (September 25)


Sports

So a Wrestler, Football Player and Basketball Player Walk Into a Studio…

  • CBS-New York featured WWE Hall of Fame member and Stratusphere Yoga of Toronto owner Trish Stratus in a radio interview discussing her new role as yoga instructor and studio owner. Stratus: “I had better recovery which helped me be a better athlete.” (September 27)
  • Los Angeles Times reports NBA small forward Matt Barnes of the Los Angeles Clippers “said yoga helped him take off 20 pounds” and that he is perhaps “a lot more flexible too, thanks to his new yoga practice.” Barnes: “At first we meditated and I could barely fold my legs…. But I kept going and the ladies kept giving me tips and were helping me stretch, and it was a surreal experience to have women that I don’t even know, that don’t even know me be there and kind of coach me through it.” (September 30)
  • Yoga instructor Jake Panasevich, RYT 200, writes in U.S. News and World Report that yoga "is the most efficient method to change the values" in the NFL at a time when it "desperately needs transformation." Panasevich mentions Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll "has his team practice meditation and holds mandatory yoga sessions" and the author lists four concepts that could help NFL players: "Reactive to Responsive"; "Positive Thinking"; "Visualization"; and "Accountability." (October 1)
  • Cincinnati Enquirer featured a video and text about Cincinnati Bengals offensive lineman Andrew Whitworth practicing hot yoga. Whitworth, on bringing his teammates: "It’s fun and you like to see guys find new things and help them be successful. That's part of my job being a leader and captain of the team is not just to play well and lead well but find a way to make everybody around me better." (September 26)


YA in the News

College Papers, International Media and Everything in Between

  • Roll Call (DC) quoted Yoga Alliance® President Richard Karpel in a story about the 5.75 percent sales tax effecting District-area wellness facilities, including yoga studios. Karpel, on why yoga studios should be exempt from that tax: “None of us in the yoga community think the purpose [of yoga] is physical exercise.” (September 25)
  • Washington Post quoted Karpel’s “letter to the Office of the Chief Financial Officer in July” regarding the same tax, in which when he “noted that the state of New York, when dealing with a similar tax in 2012, ruled that yoga could not be considered a form of exercise.” (September 30)
  • BBC quoted Karpel’s argument that “exercise is ‘a by-product in the same way as it is with dance or Tai Chi.’ … While the type of yoga [practiced] in many gyms may have little to do with Buddhist or Hindu spirituality, he says, the primary purpose of specialist yoga studios ‘is to integrate the mind, the body and the spirit’. Getting fit is a happy side effect.” (September 30)
  • Hoya (Georgetown University) also quoted Karpel's arguments against the tax and noted Yoga Alliance® "has spearheaded the opposition to the tax, disagreeing with the inclusion of yoga under 'physical exercise.'" (October 10)
  • Arkansas Democrat-Gazette featured a front-page story about whether yoga teacher training schools should "be regulated by the state Board of Private Career Education." The story quotes Karpel several times, stating he "sent a letter to the Arkansas Board of Private Career Education on Sept. 24 that outlines Yoga Alliance®'s arguments" against regulation and that he "met with" PCE Board director Brenda Germann on Oct. 8. "Karpel told school owners that they face a "friendly disagreement' with the state." (October 13)

CORRECTION: The September 25 edition of Yoga Insider in the monthly Yoga Alliance® newsletter misidentified the role of Stacey Faught, E-RYT 200/RYT 500, RCYT, RPYT. She is the owner of Blue Yoga Nyla yoga studio and the assistant director of Balance Yoga and Wellness, RYS 200, RCYS; not the owner of the school. The school’s teacher training program is run out of her studio.


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