Is Yoga for Men?

Jennifer Sebenick
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When I offer to teach yoga to many of the men I know, I often get the response “no thanks, I will leave the yoga to my wife.” There seems to be a certain stigma in our culture (at least by males that don’t practice) that yoga is geared toward women. Often I find myself explaining that yoga has origins that date back thousands of years and was practiced only by men with the intention to instill discipline, physically, mentally and spiritually. So what’s with the stigma that’s sometimes attached to men practicing yoga in our culture?
 
It has been my experience that most men who don’t practice yoga think that it’s merely about stretching and relaxing. To them, it’s not a suitable form of exercise that will help them gain strength and muscle mass. Yet if these same men ever stepped foot in a power vinyasa class, they would quickly learn that these classes can be an amazing workout, and so much more.

As a yoga teacher, my greatest wish is that everyone could see past the yoga stigma and realize that it is a journey to spiritual, mental and physical health that can improve all aspects of a person’s life.

The spiritual gain alone is well worth the time spent on the mat.
 
This article is dedicated to the men out there who aren’t quite sure about yoga. Of course there are plenty of dedicated male yogis, but this goes out to all the skeptics. Yoga is for men too.

Everyone can benefit from yoga.

The freedom it creates, and the feeling of being at ease with yourself and with the world around you is just the beginning. Yoga can be life altering and belief changing. Everybody can benefit from the positivity that it brings.
 

 
There are parts of the world where people are brought up practicing the Eight Limbs of yoga every day. Can you imagine a world where everyone was brought up this way? The change can start with us. If we could educate ourselves and others about the origins and the ancient practices of yoga, then we could definitely move past the stigma that some men attribute to yoga. We are absolutely moving in the right direction with more and more yoga instructors jumping into the history of the practice to better teach their students who are willing to learn.
 
If yogis continue to spread the word and welcome those that don’t yet practice, then there is still hope that yoga will be practiced by men as much as women and that the current stigma will be something of the past. Invite someone you know who’s uncertain about yoga to your studio’s next beginner class. Yoga can be a vehicle of transformation, both inwardly as well as collectively.
 
Share this article with someone who’s skeptical, and start the conversation. Knowledge is power!

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Why More Men Should Be Doing Yoga (Video)
Let's face it. Yoga is viewed by some as a female-dominant practice. Of course this isn't true, and there are plenty of male yogis doing their thang around the globe.
Read »

Jennifer Sebenick

Jennifer Sebenick is a yogi that has just recently obtained her 200 hour yoga teacher certification and is registered with Yoga Alliance. Jennifer is family-oriented and spends her spare time hangin’ out with them. She is currently studying at the American College of Healthcare Science to receive her degree in complementary alternative medicine. She loves adventure and loves to travel and hopes that she soon will be able to incorporate more of both into her life.

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