Yoga Journal: Truth in Advertising

The da Vinci Code
February 22, 2010
Post to Post
March 15, 2010

Yoga Journal: Truth in Advertising

For years,  I’ve been a fan of Gary Kraftsow’s work with therapeutic yoga. I borrow from his books to share poses with students in my classes.  His workshops sound so appealing, so targeted  to my personal practice as well as to my teaching. Unfortunately, they tend to take place on the other coast.

Imagine my delight when I discovered he’ll be on this side of the country, offering a three-day intensive for teachers at the Yoga Journal Conference. I pored over the description for the course. While every joint in my body knew this would be a good match for me, those same joints reminded me that three full days would be too much for them.

How  ironic that an intensive on the healthy benefits of yoga would be too intense for my PD body, putting my health at risk. Ahimsa, I thought.  Be compassionate toward that PD body and find a path.

I pored over the brochure again and settled on one day. I emailed Lyn, who works with Gary Kraftsow, and explained my situation. She replied that Gary had no problem with me attending for just one day.

The reply from Yoga Journal was not as understanding. We’re not set up for that, the email stated. Try back again in a few weeks.

I wrote back a few weeks later.  No answer.

I phoned.  Same response. If the workshop fills up, the woman said,  and I’m signed up for only one day,  it’s not fair to someone who wants to sign up for three days.

Why is it fair, I wondered,  that I wait to sign up for one day to see if an able-bodied person signs up for all three? Who is to judge that what I’d bring back to my students with movement disorders after one day is less than what someone  would glean from attending all three?

Satya, I thought. My mind didn’t want to go there. But I couldn’t help but wonder if the truth for YJ – what’s not  “fair” to them – is they’d would miss out on two-day’s fees if I were to fill a slot for one day.

I’m left with a melancholy seeping throughout my body. The top-selling publication on all that is yoga is, pun intended here, inflexible. And possibly untruthful. And just as possibly in it not for the sharing of ideas but for the profit.

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