Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Stupid of the Week #2: Yoga

Welcome to our second installment of Stupid of the Week.

There are certain things in the world, such as low fat granola, that everyone agrees are good for you. Predictably enough, these things turn out to be universally bad for you at worst, and a waste of time and resources at best. One of the worst offenders in this regard is yoga, the anti-exercise exercise.

I'm not even going to waste one paragraph writing about the stupidity of the spiritual aspects of yoga. Suffice it to say that no, you are not God, none of you are God, but I do wish you were all God because then you wouldn't exist and I wouldn't have to deal with your stupid chanting. Damn, I wasted a paragraph.

I used to think yoga was the answer. I looked at the skinny girls in yoga class and thought "They are skinny because they do yoga." Now I realize I reversed causality. They are not skinny because they do yoga, they do yoga because they are skinny. Their emaciated forearms don't have the capacity to lift a dumbbell; their spindly legs couldn't run a mile; their abs aren't so much flat as deflated. All they can do is stretch and say "look at me, I'm skinny!"

Granted yoga, like walking, standing, even chewing, is eventually exercise, if you do it for long enough. If you spend 6 hours a day in the warrior pose, I'm sure you'll develop significant calf strength. In fact, this is the supposed point of yoga, to be able to hold a position nearly indefinitely. That's very useful if you are a ninja or if you cannot move because you stepped on a pressure-sensitive bomb. But if you're a normal person with a semblance of a life, you don't have time to lie on the floor for an hour. You won't work off the calories in a stick of Carefree gum that way. You have better things to do. You need a get-in, get-out workout that's actually a workout.

Yes, skinny girls do yoga. What other qualities do these girls have besides skinniness? Here is a complete list of ALL the serious yoga practitioners I've met:
-A girl who also practices raki, the form of Japanese "medicine" where you cure disease by waving your hands around the patient's head to manipulate their aura.
-A woman who also believes that you should eat only rotting foods to ease digestion.
-A girl who is also in a sex cult.
-A boy who is also in a sex cult.
-A woman who is also prostitute.
-A man who thinks that all external sense-data are lies to trick you and keep you from seeing the truth (attainable only through your yoga practice, of course).

Did I forget to mention that these are not mere practitioners, but full, certified, went-on-a-spiritual-retreat-in-India yoga instructors? These people, the people teaching your yoga class and telling you about their heightened awareness from their "practice" or whatever, are all fucking insane. Yet every career power-woman thinks she "needs" yoga to manage her stress, like the best way to manage stress is to waste an hour sitting on the floor. I don't think I know any successful woman who doesn't have a yoga mat collecting dust in a closet somewhere, and yet the entire purpose of yoga directly contradicts everything that makes her successful.

We already spend about a third of our lives asleep. If you want to spend another third of your life in downward dog position (someone please make the obvious joke here), be my guest. That leaves you 8 hours for making money, romantic happiness, sex, procreation, dining, TV watching, shopping, reading, travel, singing, dancing, keeping house, laundry, etc. Really that's about 8 hours for making money.

Or you could dedicate 1 or 2 hours to actual exercise and spend the rest of your life doing better things. Just a thought.

With love,

S. Misanthrope


  1. Congrats on working in a Clueless quote.

  2. It was a stroke of genius to so cleverly exploit another's genius.

  3. Good article.

    I gave yoga a try for two sessions back in college. It was completely worthless to me and I don't understand why people do it. It can't possibly burn enough calories to be considered a true "exercise". I think yoga is the lazy person's exercise. They don't want to get some true cardio (which DOES actually reduce stress in itself- endorphins). They just want to go show off and say "I do yoga, I'm deep and thoughtful."

    You want a great way to manage stress? Go shoot some people on call of duty and afterward lie in bed and read a nice book. :)