So just when we thought we had it all covered with Ashtanga, Kundalini, Anusara (sigh), Sivananda, Bikram, Yogalates [...], there’s another yoga coming our way: BROGA. Yes, it’s yoga, but this time guys only are allowed into the yoga room.
Apparently it’s “okay if you can’t touch your toes” (should it not be okay anyway? Hhmm…) and broga gives you “that pumped-up feeling you get from working out and a deep flexibility and relaxation feeling from working in“. (source)
The media have been all over it, with TIME letting go a sigh of relief: “Finally, yoga for dudes”, and The Week saying: “No-shame yoga for men”. Bear with me, but there’s something I don’t quite get. Isn’t there something wrong with the basics?
What is yoga? Well, if we believe Patanjali, who knew a thing or two about yoga (not about broga, though…), he says in the Yoga Sutras that yoga means to follow the eight limbs or steps to quiet the mind and achieve kaivalya (ultimate freedom).
So according to the Yoga Sutras, the ultimate aim of yoga is to reach kaivalya. “This is the experience of one’s innermost being or soul (purusa). Then one becomes free of chains of cause and effect (karma) which tie us to continual reincarnation. In kaivalya one is said to exist in peace and tranquillity, having attained absolute knowledge of the difference between the spiritual which is timeless, unchanging and free of sorrows, and the material which is not.” (source)
I looked everywhere but couldn’t find any reference to “core muscles”, “muscle-toning” and “cardio-working”. If the statement above is true – how can this be different for men and women?
Become men enlightened in a different way? Is their road to liberation a different one? Is not the nature of the mind the same, no matter if man or woman?
While I totally appreciate that men have different needs when it comes to working out and fitness, is the same true for yoga? And hang on – was being in a room packed with gorgeous, sweaty women not supposed to be one of the added benefits?
What do you think?