September 21, 2012

Who’s a yoga bitch? ~ Gitte Lindgaard

Are you a yoga bitch?

Even though I’m a yoga teacher, I still enjoy taking other teachers classes and workshops. I do this to get inspired and learn something new. And, almost every time I attend a new class I see them—the yoga bitches.

We all know the yoga bitches. They are the super skinny, super flexible girls, that arrogantly look at you like you are something the cat dragged in. By the way, I hate you yoga bitches back!

I teach restorative yoga, so I’m not the most flexible yoga teacher. Even though yoga is not about competing I just hate seeing them being more flexible then me or doing a pose that I haven’t mastered.

Not so long ago I went to a yoga workshop. Since I was a little late, I had no choice than to lay next to the queen of yoga bitches for three hours. Every five minutes she told me, and the girl to her other side, that we would not be able to do the same things that she could—because she was: hyper-mobile, super-flexible, hyper-flexible and some other words I’m sure she had made up.

At some point, I was actually able to do a pose as well as her. She looked at me and said:

Sweety, you shouldn’t do that. It’s not healthy for you, and I’m only doing it because I am super-hyper-flexible!”

I took a deep breath and just smiled at her.

Do you know the feeling where you are thinking:

“I may be smiling on the outside, but in my head I’ve killed you five times

She was really getting on my nerves. Unfortunately I guess my “I hate you” face must look a lot like my “tell me more” face because she just kept on going, starting to correct me in my poses and telling me all about what she could do and all the years she had been doing yoga and all the places she had been doing this yoga.

She was acting like she was doing me a favor by talking to me. All through class she had an expression on her face like she smelled something really disgusting. It was a great workshop but it would have been so much better if I had been placed anywhere else in the room.

This was actually a very special workshop because I’d convinced my husband who doesn’t do yoga to join me. Since we were late, we  were placed in opposite corners of the room. In the car home, I told my husband about the yoga bitch and he told me that he had been next to one as well.

Not as bad but after he had placed his mat, she had giggled and smiled at him, telling him that he had it upside down. My husband, who is a proud, dynamic and competent man who likes to be in control, felt embarrassed. When he told me, I could see the situation like a little movie in my head and I couldn’t stop laughing. Yes, we all know the yoga bitches, but we also know the newbies.

They look like deer caught in the headlights with an expression of disbelief on their faces if they are asked to do complicated poses. They always make me smile, not in a mean way, but it is kind of funny. While I’m thinking this I’m still laughing at my husband and suddenly it hits me—what a yoga bitch thing to do!

I started to think if there are degrees of being a yoga bitch. Maybe I am a little yoga bitch when I am not teaching? What made me even more scared was that I actually know the girl who helped at my husband and I don’t see her as a yoga bitch, but to him she was.

What if the yoga bitches don’t know they are yoga bitches?

Maybe we should all ask ourselves: Who’s a yoga bitch?


Gitte Lindgaard lives in Denmark with her husband and two daughters. She has a degree in Nutrition and Health and specializes in empowering people to be aware and take responsibility for healthy living. Gitte practices yoga and after recovering from whiplash, she began teaching yoga to people with disabilities. She believes in doing something every day that her future self will be proud of. Connect with her on TwitterFacebook or her blog.

Editor: Colleen Simpson


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