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There’s no denying Lululemon’s rise in popularity or its wildly popular marketing campaigns designed to inspire (and sometimes shock) us all to get healthy and look good doing it. As a New York Times writer put it in a recent article: “Everything [aboout Lululemon’s stores] is relentlessly cheery, as if someone were constantly tapping me on the shoulder and saying ‘Yay!'”
But the writer gets at something more profound than the bottom line of the yoga-inspired clothing franchise. What does Lululemon’s success say about the yoga community when the company’s positive, goal-oriented approach to marketing has been so successful? Isn’t yoga really about accepting and loving yourself no matter what you look like in your pants? (Let’s face it, people, it’s not always a happy, sunny picture.)
Is this really our secret yoga mantra?: “I am willing to bow to an
elephant-headed god, but I refuse to look skanky when I walk to my car
after class because there might be a hot guy around.” Are we losing something by adapting an ancient practice to fit into our modern lifestyles or just making it more accessible?