I’ve been hitting yoga hard since I got back from Paris, trying rid my system of that stinky camembert, which is still probably having sex and making cheese babies in my digestive tract. And also, because I love yoga and I’ve been practicing on and off for the last 16 years. I basically need it to stay sane. I’ve noticed some changes since I started doing it years ago: all the new forms of yoga that have popped up, how it’s become so popular that they offer it at my gym, the fact that I’ve asked men I’m dating to attend a class with me and they’ve said yes. That never would have happened in 1997. Never! I mean, Lululemon didn’t even exist back then. I had to wear standard workout gear. Imagine that!
I’ll tell you what hasn’t changed about yoga in the last decade and a half: there’s always one annoying person in class who has the power to kill your buzz. For some reason, I feel like their mats always end up next to mine. WHY?
After the jump, I think I’ve identified all annoying types of yoga class goers. If you recognize yourself as one of these people, I’m sorry, but someone needed to tell you.
1. A class of their own. The yoga class this person is doing has absolutely NOTHING to do with the yoga class that the teacher is teaching. This person is making up their own postures. They are rolling around, supine, in a fakakta head stand, in Pigeon, while the rest of the class is doing a round of Sun Salutations. I’m all for listening to your body and doing what feels good to you, but I can’t help but wonder why this person even bothered to come to yoga class when they can do the class they invented at home … on their own.
2. The loud sigher. This person believes in making tons of noise while they practice. I’m not talking about ujjayi breathing, which is a yogic breath technique sometimes known as “ocean breath.” This person doesn’t sound like a peaceful ocean. This person sounds like a pack of feral cats. Sighing and moaning and yelping, letting the rest of the class known how every posture feels for them. They’re probably one of those people claiming to have had a yogasm. I don’t want to know.
3. The uptight yogi. These people definitely need to be at yoga because they are wound so damn tight. But at the same time, you don’t need them imposing their Type A Fascism upon YOUR yoga practice. They’re usually the first one there, often running and pushing to get the spot they want. If your mat isn’t perfectly lined up, they’ll probably tell you to fix it. They correct the teacher if they call out the postures wrong. Practice next to one of these people, and you’ll end up more uptight than when you started.
4. The unabashed gas letter. Sometimes farting happens in yoga. You are putting yourself in funky positions and every once in a while, you can’t clench your butt tightly enough. It’s unfortunate when that happens, but that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about the person, who is letting lots of gas, and proudly. They think of yoga class as their own private fart n’ queaf den.This is especially offensive if the room is crowded and they are right next to you. Please, have some respect for other people’s sensibilities.
5. Too much child’s pose. When you spend 80 percent of a yoga class in Child’s Pose, you’re either too infirm to be in yoga class or you’re taking in way too easy on yourself. Child’s Pose is a resting posture that you can always go to if you’re feeling overworked. You’re not supposed to stay that way for the entire class. If you’re sick or injured, go home. If not, get out of Child’s Pose and try at least a posture or two.
6. The show-off. This person knows how to do every posture perfectly. They are insanely flexible. Good for them! But instead of practicing without fanfare, they are calling attention to their yogic perfection — correcting your postures, asking the teacher if their doing it right just so everyone will look at them. In case they didn’t get the memo, yoga is not about ego. If you want your ego stroked, go somewhere else.
7. The needy yogi. This person sits right near the yoga instructor, interrupts class multiple times to ask if they’re doing postures correctly and monopolizes the teacher after class to ask even more questions or talk about how the class was for them or what’s been going on this week in their lower back or all of the above. And look out, because, if the teacher is busy, they’ll corner you and tell you all about what happened during their last meditation session. No thanks.