In my ignorance I had reduced this 3,000 year old practice into a simple exercise class. I wasn't in it for the 'hippy dippy' chanting and veganism, I was in it for the abs. Irrespective of the whole 'cool' new revival you wouldn't catch me chanting cross legged, or wearing a red bracelet. I liked meat, wine and enjoying life. I liked having fun.
The very mention of yoga inspires common reactions such as "I can't even touch my toes, I can't sit still, it's too boring, I'm not flexible enough, I already do Pilates, I prefer the gym etc". I'll be honest, as a long time yoga instructor it kind of annoys me to hear these rote and banal responses and throw away comparisons to gym workouts and ab exercises.
Have you ever sworn at your yoga teacher whilst she/he counts S L O W L Y to eight in Boat Pose (Navasana)? Felt ecstatic in a deep backbend? Or shed a tear in Pigeon (Eka Pada Rajakapotasana)? Most of us have some kind of mental and emotional reaction to the shapes we put our bodies into during yoga class. Usually we just go with the flow. But once in a while certain poses trigger us.
Good health and wellbeing is an essential part to leading a happy and fulfilled life. Being individuals, there certainly isn't a one-size-fits-all, and, depending on our preferences, tastes and personalities, we each have the potential to be interested in a vast range of different practices and philosophies.