Thursday, April 8, 2010

Asshole Yoga Instructors

Yes, they exist. I never knew being able to contort your body in unnatural ways gave you a free pass to pretentiousness, but I've encountered plenty of jerk face yoga teachers over the years. Here are just a few:

Teacher #1: Asked the class to define vinyasa yoga. No one was offering up any answers, so I blurted out, "Flow!" He looked at me like I had three heads, chuckled and said, "Well," No? Yes, it was an elementary answer, but no? I'm not exactly wrong. His definition: "To connect fluid movement through breath." Fluid/flow, same shit, asshole. 

Teacher #2: Looked a lot like this guy, only I'm pretty sure his skills were not as superior because otherwise he would have been showing them off throughout class, no doubt. He corrected me a few times about not locking my knee, but for some reason I just wasn't getting it. How do you fully straighten your leg without locking your knee?  "You'll have to figure that out yourself won't you?" Right. Thanks.

Teacher #3: I seriously thought she was going to beat a bitch up. A lady commented on how fast we were moving from pose to pose at the very beginning of class, and the teacher snapped, "If it's too much for you, go into child's pose!" A shouting match ensued and the lady stormed out of class. So much for relaxation!

Has anyone else had an experience with a bitchy yoga instructor? What happened? And do you sense an air of pretentiousness from some yogis? I hate it. Although, if I could touch my nose to my feet in downward facing dog, I'd probably think I was the shit, too!


  1. I've never encountered a particularly bitchy yoga instructor, though I do think that there is a sense of confidence. Some do take it too far though. As a (wannabe) yogi myself, I'm sorry you encountered such a-holes; lame!

  2. Ewww, who ARE these people? The only remotely evil yoga instructor I've encountered was a woman who subbed in while my usual dude was on vacation. She kept yelling, "Suck in your core! Suck it in!" and I was like -- bitch, I CAN HEAR YOU but I'm pregnant.

  3. Ahaha. I've never tried yoga but I've always loved the idea of it. I'm simply not flexible enough...

    For example, when I stand straight and bend down to tough my feet (without bending my knees).. I can pretty much only go as far as my knees. Stretching every day didn't help this either. I guess my body just isn't made right for that yoga stuff. Oh well.

  4. I basically hate anyone who tries to act like they are "a know it all expert who can't be bothered with the the little people!" SCREW that guy! What an ass!

  5. i've never taken a formal yoga class, so i can't relate. i take a yoga-like "sexy stretch" at my pole studio on wednesdays. and i heart my instructor. sorry you had to go through such nonsense. know me, if got mad enough i probably would've shared a not very nice piece of my mind with assholes. i mean really, so waht if you can wrap your leg around your head, that's not a usefull skill jack-hole!

  6. I've actually never taken a yoga class out of fear. I have heard some horror stories about instructors and I've always been frightened of making a fool of myself. :/

  7. I'm a wannabe yogi, too, Sophia! Yeah, the experience kinda bruised my ego...I'm not too confident with my skills at it is, and that certainly didn't help!

    Haha, Kara! Yeah, two of these people were regular yoga teachers are perfectly Zen and freakishly nice.

    Wallflower, how long did you do the stretching? It is something you have to work really hard at, which is kind of a pain in the butt because it feels like a waste of time, but it's so good for you!

    Sexy Stretch...I like the sound of that, Nadette!

    Yeah, Erika, it's interesting that SO many people are intimidated by yoga because it's not SUPPOSED to be that kind of environment, but it can totally be scary. Why don't you start with a beginner class?

  8. i love your yoga posts ellen! i'm all about teachers being in the moment, but i think it's also good to have a stock class and demeanor memorized and well-rehearsed for those days when one's feeling bitchy like teacher #3 (or #1, or #2). or better yet, have a sub on-call ;)

  9. many yoga teachers are shit. i hope you find someone good.
    best of luck.

    wallflower-you are not alone. most peeps i teach are not flexi. they still benefit ALOT.

    erika-no one would notice. everyone in the same boat.

    (i have taught over 10 years)

  10. Yeah, skw, I mean, yoga teachers can't be PERFECT alll the time, even though we kind of expect them to be. But I agree, they should have a go-to plan on the days they just aren't feeling it.

    And Binidfry, I DID find a teacher I loved, but of course she now has a replacement and I don't know how to find her in the city! ughhh

    1. I'm on this because of the twat that likes to pretend she's a yogi, but in reality is just a mean bitch. I've been reprimanded in class for actually using perfect trained form, and when she's done this to me I look around for an example of better form than mine to help me align and all I see is a bunch of peri/post menopausal shiksas in the worst form and quivering as though they're going to bust a vein. Today I was openly ridiculed for wearing UGGS to class. NO FRIGGIN' KIDDING- she made fun of my attire and not in a cute way. I could give you tons of other times she's gotten on me as well as another yogini who is excellent in her practice. She is one of those who can't do so she teaches and obviously couldn't find peace in a phone booth with two flashlights. NAMASTE you mean, poor excuse of an instructor!

  11. yep yoga assholes are a dime a dozen now. turbo yoga- figure that one out. Yoga is turned into a billion dollar schlock fest with the winner wearing the shinyest tights. Brings me back to the workout girls of the 80s but they were a happy go lucky bunch who snorted a bit of coke on the weekends. Go downtown Vancouver and you see the horrendous Lulu Lemon shrine which takes up a city block, utter reflection of the pretense Yoga has become (in america) just another flaming fad for people who are flaming assholes. Do yoga if you feel - it's a great art, but it's not a sport so don't throw it in the Cross fit mentality unless the general person wants to hurt themselves.