The State of American Yoga: 3 Lessons From the 2017 Live Be Yoga Tour

Even though this adventure has just ended, 3 things stood out about the critical place yoga occupies in American culture today.
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The-Oculus

6 months. 22 cities. 68 classes. 7,000 yogis. 15,000 miles.

What an incredible experience to pack into six months. We saw so much on this journey,  from the newest, state-of-the-art retreat center in California (1440 Multiversity), to some of the largest studio classes ever in Houston. We met countless practitioners and brilliant teachers, and saw firsthand the impact that yoga is having beyond the studio environment through organizations like Bent on Learning. Even though this adventure has just ended, three things stood out about the critical place yoga occupies in American culture today.

1. Everyone practicing yoga is making a choice to be their best.

Despite the hectic pace of everyday life, more than 36 million people in this country make a point to carve out time from their responsibilities and commitments to practice yoga. Inherent in this choice is an appreciation that practicing mindfulness creates more positive outcomes in your life. Yoga can be the roadmap to change your self-image, parent with more compassion, or inspire you to give back to your community. We’ve all come to the practice in our own way, but we’ve all left with a sense of clarity about how yoga reaches beyond the physical to touch every aspect of our lives and the lives of those around us.

The 2017 Live Be Yoga Tour wouldn’t have been possible without the support of our fantastic sponsors:

CamelBak makes the absolute best hydration products. Life exists because of water, and CamelBak is there with water waiting, so we can do more of what we love.

goodnessKNOWS shares the philosophy that we can always be better. Their gluten-free snack-squares support the journey of yoga to try a little, and find greatness.

prAna combines comfort, style, function, and sustainability into brilliantly designed apparel for an active lifestyle.

2. Yoga is personal.

My yoga looks different than your yoga, and that’s exactly the point. Yoga is a personal journey. It’s a journey to understand more about ourselves. We often get pushed or pulled in new directions as a practitioner. Sometimes teachers lead us somewhere we’re not ready to go, or we push ourselves into injury trying to “get the pose.” But yoga is about the mind and breath first and foremost. YOUR breath defines YOUR practice, and YOUR practice is a gift to yourself.

We'd like to thank the following sponsors for making this journey happen for us:

EO Brands is a family-owned, certified organic manufacturer of aromatherapeutic self-care products. EO believes that natural beauty begins with yourself.

Hugger Mugger has been loved and trusted by yogis since 1986. They continue to be an innovator of mats, props, and handmade bolsters to enhance your practice.

Solgar supplements and innovative wellness products support the health and well-being of those who strive to live vibrantly every day.

3. Yoga is union.

As practitioners, we have the chance to wake up to the embodiment of what yoga really is, and that is union. It’s about us connecting to each other and to the bigger picture of why we’re all here. Together, we can continue to make this world a better place.

The following sponsors were an essential part of the 2017 Live Be Yoga Tour:

Ford was the official vehicle of the 2017 Tour. They are committed to aggressively pursuing environmental practices that make the world a better place.

MINDBODY helps you find and book yoga classes and deals around the globe, wherever your practice takes you. Get the MINDBODY app and book a class today.

Rishi Tea sources organic teas and botanicals of extraordinary character. They are committed to direct trade and crafting globally inspired holistic blends. 

We would also like to thank YOU! Thank you to each and every one of the practitioners we met along the Tour, and to the countless people who encouraged and followed us on this journey or contributed to help make the 2017 Live Be Yoga Tour a huge success. We couldn't have done it without you!

Follow the Tour on Facebook and Instagram @livebeyoga as we continue to share content and gear up for the 2018 Tour.