It is no secret that many believe yoga, like other forms of exercise, can help to improve body image. But some people believe the body positive energy is even stronger with naked yoga. In an Ohio.com article this weekend by Joanne Viviano, nude yoga instructor Amy Patterson explained how the practice changed her view of her body. Patterson said, “Prior to this practice I, like most women, really struggled with a lot of body-image issues and constantly not feeling like my body is good enough, not beautiful enough, not fit enough, not thin enough.” She explained, “And I come to this practice and most of those thoughts have pretty much been eradicated from my daily life.” In her classes, Amy encourages students to be “acting from a place of gratitude, taking this time to be thankful for your body for all the support that it provides you.”
Patterson teaches at Worthington’s Dharma House. Aaron King, the owner of Dharma House, was also quoted in the article as saying, “No matter what your body looks like, no matter what size you are, how much yoga experience you have, how much money. None of that matters when you’re in a room full of naked people, and we are all vulnerable together, and we’re all on this even playing field.”
The mentality of being grateful for what your body can do is one that can definitely help with body image. That is a running theme in all yoga, and it can be taken into any exercise. When you are focused on the amazing things your body allows you to do and accomplish, you love it from a place that is far deeper than physical appearance. Soon enough, you can grow to love your body unconditionally, regardless of it’s size or shape, simply because it allows you to move and walk and live your life! In combination with that mentality, naked yoga puts you in a situation where you are nude and surrounded by others who are nude. It is a non-sexual nudity, and a nudity where you are in yoga poses that twist and contort your body. This means, in a sense, you cannot hide any of those rolls or bumps or “flaws,” and neither can anyone around you. You are all put in a position where you have no choice but to see and accept your own flaws, and seeing each other in that same position is encouraging.
Whether it’s naked yoga or any other exercise, always remember to be grateful to your body and forget your flaws. Just move and have fun.