Strike a Pose For Yoga

Yoga in America. How downward dogs and crow poses went mainstream.

Thousands of people take a yoga class from acclaimed yogi, Elena Brower on the great lawn of Central Park, June 22, 2010 in New York. (AP)

People take a yoga class from acclaimed yogi, Elena Brower on the great lawn of Central Park, June 22, 2010 in New York. (AP)

These days, yoga is everywhere – at the gym, at the mall, at the preschool. In prisons and homeless shelters.

There’s hot yoga, cold yoga; hip-hop yoga, chocolate yoga. Safari retreats and competitions for yoga. Even Savasana for babies and dogs.

Yoga has a deep history in America. My guest today traces yoga’s influence from the first swami to Emerson and Thoreau to today’s power yoga for the over-stressed masses.

This hour, On Point: Breath in, breath out, and center yourself for the story of yoga in America.


Stefanie Syman is co-founder of Feed magazine, and author of “The Subtle Body: The Story of Yoga in America.”  Read an excerpt.  She has practiced yoga for fifteen years.

Barbara Benaugh is owner of The Yoga Studio in Brookline, MA. She has taught yoga in Boston since 1980. She contributes to “Yoga Journal,” and has a line of instructional DVD’s.



Try your footwork with Shiva Rea’s “Yoga Trance Dance”:

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