We Are Not Limited By Our Curves
"Yoga is possible for anybody who really wants it. Yoga is universal... But don't approach yoga with a business mind looking for worldly gain." ~Sri Krishna Pattabhi Jois
Yes, plus size women can and do participate in yoga practise. If you are plus size but have not discovered the benefits and joy of yoga then you have come to the right place.
This lens is your one stop shop to plus size yoga. You will find reviews of my favorite CDs and books as well as links to some of the best yoga sites on the web.
Yoga is a fun, relaxing, strengthening form of exercise that is good for your body and your mind. The beauty of yoga is that it is not limited by location or body size.
The Beauty of Yoga - It Is Not Limited to Location
Yoga Just My Size with Megan Garcia
In an intro, Megan discusses how she came to perform yoga, how she was motivated to produce a video and how it works. She talks about being self conscious and limited by her size and what yoga has done for her. This video is designed to increase self confidence, produce a sense of calm, lengthen tight muscles and improve posture. Weight loss is not the focus of this video. Like with most exercise videos, there is a caution for all viewers especially if you're pregnant or menstruating.
Yoga: Just My Size is divided into 3 sections: Warm up, Workout, and Deep Relaxation. Throughout the twenty minute routine Megan wears a body hugging unitard showing off her chubby belly and double chin. According to her website, her frame is 210 pounds, the 5'10" and a size 18. As Megan performs the moves a voice narrates directions on how to perform them and what to use. The background music is louder and annoying, bordering on cheesy cheap.
The warm up works through five slow, non-strenuous movements, holding each posture for five deep breaths. After a lunge transition to the standing position for the workout Megan performs five new postures, again with five deep breaths. This set is repeated once more before doing another lunge transition, to the floor to do four more poses as a transition to prepare the body for the final step, deep relaxation.
Tips are not given through the video so it's important, if you're not going to watch the whole video right through to at least watch the special tips section first. Here she provides some info on how to use a chair, pillow, wall or shoulder block for a few of the popular poses.
In a short interview at the end, Megan declares, "I want to help women feel beautiful and confident, in their own skin." She feels anyone larger than a size 8 must practise yoga because, "Yoga forces you to look inside."
I have some experience with yoga; both with classes and on my own. I found the moves easy to do with little strain. The great thing about the DVD is you can easily skip the intro and go right into the warm up. I hate DVDs that make you go through opening credits to get to the starting point. As a time saver the warm-up would be an excellent mini energizer in the morning and the deep relaxation at night would help settle the day before sleep.
As I mentioned earlier, the music is a bit cheesy. The alternating clips of rushing clouds are hypnotic. Megan doesn't provide the instruction. The simple moves provide an excellent platform for beginners but are perhaps too simplified for advanced practitioners other than a change of view and routine to their video collection. It is short so there are no excuses for not fitting it into your activity schedule a few times a week. I'm sure you'll be addicted in no time.
- Entire Program
- The Workout
- Deep Relaxation
- Special Tips (modifications)
- Just My Size Brand Video
- Language selection
This is not a teaching video. It's just pretty to watch.
Six Foot Mandala Round Yoga Mat
Now here is a yoga mat that a plus size yogi can be proud of. No more readjusting to stay on the mat. No more hanging off the mat while doing floor work. And it's big enough to share with a toddler.
This six foot mandala yoga mat is available from Mandala Yoga Retreat for $65.
Megan Garcia is a plus size model for both magazine and catalogues. In 2005 she was the instructor for the Just My Size yoga video. Mega Yoga is her own venture based on her years as a practitioner and certified yoga instructor in Manhattan, New York.
Mega Yoga covers the basic concepts of yoga and focuses strongly on the ability to treat yourself with compassion and avoid judgement. Or as Megan says, to take up space with no second thoughts. In the physical realm it teaches you how to use props like straps, blocks, walls and chairs to intensify or modify a pose.