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Despite Being a Multi-Billion Dollar Industry, Only 5% of Americans Practice Yoga

I teach yoga for a living. I manage a yoga studio, I direct a yoga teacher-training course, and I write articles about yoga. Aside from thinking about yoga all day long, I sometimes dream about yoga. This means I am immersed in something that relates to yoga nearly 24 hours a day, on some level or another.

The fact that 15 million Americans practice yoga today doesn’t surprise me. What raises an eyebrow is that there are more than 300 million people living in this country. Do the math and you will learn that less than 5 percent of the population is practicing yoga.

In a society that promotes yoga classes of a wide variety from yoga for Christians to yoga for the family dog, it makes you wonder why everyone is not doing some type of yoga.

To appease my curiosity, I did a little research. I called, emailed, or Facebooked friends and acquaintances that I knew didn’t do yoga and I asked them to give me their number one reason why not. The following is a short list of some of the answers people gave me.
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How to Practice Yoga Off the Mat

Are you lacking in time or motivation to make it a yoga class today? Don’t worry; you can still practice yoga even if your mat is hiding out in the closet or lost somewhere in the back seat of your car.

Many people see yoga as a workout that strengthens, stretches, and relaxes our mind and body, but it is also deeply layered with philosophical premises. These premises are what help to fuel the sought after “post yoga glow” at the end of class. You will emit this glow after holding sometimes rigorous and sweat producing yoga poses, but there is a lot more you can explore beyond taking your favorite yoga class.

First, you must identify your intention for practicing yoga. Are you after a perfect rear end, sculpted arms and a flat stomach? Or is your approach more about reducing stress, heightening the awareness of your body or flirting with new levels of spirituality?


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