Attitude of yoga towards sports



Is yoga a kind of sport?

The very definition of sport that implies a competing game includes two inalienable things. First - it is necessary to have a competition where there should be a winner. Second – in sports we need some outside visibility, which allows you to see the winner and the loser. Indeed, each athlete aims to achieve specific results that can be understood by a viewer or a participant.
Oppositely, yoga itself is a system of self-exploration and does not imply winners and losers. In addition, there are no external criteria of advancement in yoga to compare these criteria and to determine the winner as it is in sports. The main thing in yoga is the harmony while practicing both of physical and mental exercises. The habit to practice is the only indicator of success.
No judge or spectator will be able to determine how much a particular person feels the harmony during practicing yoga, or how he/she developed a natural habit to practice yoga. Even if a person can bend well and it looks nice, with a smile on the face, this does not mean that the person feels harmony inside. An acrobat in the circus or a gymnast can bend well and still be smiling too, overcoming the pain and discomfort inside.

At the same time, even if the person is not flexible at all and bends worse than a gymnast, but at the same time practices with harmony, it is enough for yoga, even if the outside observer does not like it. Thus, all the visible parts in the performance of yoga’s exercises is something minor and insignificant. All visible elements in yoga practices, such as asanas (poses), are not the basis of yoga, they are only a consequence of self-exploration.
Yogis generally try to avoid doing yoga as a show, because it always detracts from the immersion in the self- exploration (unless the situation associated with the spreading yoga knowledge among those who have never encountered with it). So the whole philosophy of yoga is trying to avoid the situation when someone wins and someone loses. Yoga calls us to have the situations where everyone wins and nobody losers.
Thus, yoga is not a sport, but it perfectly supplements the sport.

What is the attitude of yoga to psychoactive substances and drugs?

The attitude is very negative! And not only because it is illegal and extremely harmful to the body, but also because yoga believes that it is fundamentally impossible to achieve any stable results in self-exploration and work with your mind and intelligence with the help of "chemistry". The basis of self-exploration is only the will of the individual.

How long does it takes to get results in yoga?

It all depends on what goal you set for yourself, on your condition before you started practicing yoga and how serious you are doing yoga. Therefore it is impossible to give the specific time.

Who is involved in the certification of yoga? How to determine whether a yoga instructor is a good specialist?

In the East, particularly in India, there is no single center for the certification of yoga teachers/instructors. It is related with the immutable cultural values of the East that has always delighted the whole world.
There freedom to choose the method of self- exploration is even much more holy than the "Declaration of Human Rights" in the West. Therefore no one would dream about the creation of any kind of supervisory authority responsible for certifying of yoga teachers.
In addition, it is actually impossible to come up with the criteria for the certification in yoga, because of the different approaches in the different schools of yoga. And the internal mechanisms of action in yoga deal with such subtle and subjective concepts as "a sense of inner harmony during practice". All of this turns any attempting of creating some strict criteria into a farce.

In most Western countries there is also no uniform certification of teachers. And if such centers arise, they raise serious doubts as to the legal and an ethical point of view. And, as a consequence, these centers tend to stop their activity quickly. It would be strange if in the West, which draws all the knowledge of yoga from the East, had common certification, while the countries of the East did not have it.
However, in some yoga schools in India, Western countries and Russia they use a certification of teachers who graduate from these schools. But it should be remembered that these certificates issued in some schools of yoga may not be recognized in other ones, and this is not because some schools of yoga are true, but some are not. The point here is in the history of yoga in the East and in the spirit of common sense and love of freedom that penetrates the whole history of yoga. According to this, any certificate - it's just a piece of paper and guarantees nothing, if the holder fails to convey the harmony that literally fulfills each yoga exercise.
Any attempt “to organize and head” any areas of self-exploration is always taken very controversially among those who want to organize and head. Therefore, if you know anything about yoga school or trust it then it makes sense to trust the certificate and a yoga teacher of this school. If the certificate is issued even in India, but you do not know anything about the school that issued it, then you should look closely at the teacher and intuitively determine for yourself whether you trust this person or not.
There is a saying "As the tree, so the fruit", so a yoga teacher can only be judged by how well this person helps you to get closer to the inner depths of harmony and self-exploration.

Last modified: Friday, 23 April 2021, 7:04 PM