Let’s face it, Yoga is pretty weird. Spending upwards of 90 minutes in a room, stretching your body on a mat while seeking some kind of spiritual experience, all accompanied by exhortations from a lycra-clad instructor is a strange way to spend your time. Still, Yoga has permeated our culture enough that even as a male Yoga Teacher, I’m no longer considered particularly unusual. Occasionally though, a new style of Yoga comes up that makes even seasoned practitioners scratch their heads.
Here are my personal Top 5:
1. Naked Yoga
If you follow Yoga trends at all, you had to know this was making the list! This is exactly what it promises, a completely naked Yoga experience, promising to deliver complete honesty from teacher and student alike. Boundaries are quite literally stripped away, providing a uniquely vulnerable experience. Reportedly, both arousal and ill-intentioned participants are pleasantly rare in naked Yoga classes and many find the experience very liberating.
2. Laughter Yoga
A good example of a class that often has nothing to do with Yoga as we know it, laughter Yoga is about ‘cultivating playfulness’ by talking nonsense, chanting ‘Ha, Ha, Ha’ and generally laughing an awful lot. While some Laughter Yoga classes incorporate traditional Yoga poses, many do not and are focused exclusively on helping their participants giggle, chuckle and guffaw their way to lowering their stress levels.
Yoga especially for ‘Bro’s’, this one comes all the way from New England’s Robert Sidoti. It represents an attempt to appeal to more men and less flexible participants and is packaged as a workout rather than a more traditional Yoga experience. You can expect to leave sweating, shaking and more in touch with your inner ‘Bro’.
You guessed it, this is Yoga with your four-legged friend. Practiced both in Yoga studios and at animal shelters and the like, this represents a bonding experience with your four-legged friend. While at first sight it may seem a shameless play on the names of poses such as downward dog, this can actually be a wonderful way to bond with your pet. Special mention has to go to equine Yoga, which applies the same principle to horses.
5. Karaoke Yoga
This to me is the ultimate in bizarre Yoga trends. Pausing mid-Sun Salute to bawl out a few bars of ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ is so far from my personal experience of Yoga that I struggle to process it. Apparently though, the experience is emotional enough to bring some participants to tears!
There are many more bizarre and funky Yoga styles out there to try. Whether it’s doing downward dog with your dog, a Yoga rave, or any of the other weird and wonderful variations that didn’t make the list. Of course, this may upset some of the yoga purists out there, but what can you do? The fact remains that Yoga is continuously evolving and there’s something out there for all of us, no matter how diverse our tastes!
We want to hear from you! What’s your favorite type of weird yoga? Share it below.