While it can be agreed the benefits of yoga are plentiful, the consumption of yoga has much to be said for. From its commercialization–overpriced pants, the cringeworthy denominalizations of 'namaste' printed onto merch–to inaccessible retreats, ranging from Wanderlust to the Goop Wellness Summit, the yoga community has gone from being a holistic movement to an oversaturated market of wellness junkies. There isn't anything more rewarding than a deep stretch. But before we exhale and continue with our practice, shouldn’t we ask: What has this all turned into?
No longer under the obscurity of New Age practices, yoga has gained relevance in both the wellness and healthcare industry from the early 2000s until now. Today, your therapist, cardiologist, and Monday night yoga instructor can tell you the many benefits of yoga: stress relief, heart health, lowering blood pressure, reducing chronic pain, improving sleep, the list is endless. While this is a milestone for wellness in a general sense, capitalism has always found its way of turning a good thing into a consumer demand.