Social Question

LostInParadise's avatar

Why are there so few guys in yoga classes?

Asked by LostInParadise (28195points) August 13th, 2010

I go to a yoga class once a week. I have a stiffness in my neck that I find the class helps in relieving and I would also like to maintain some basic flexibility and balance in my senior years. Is there something unmasculine about this? A typical class will have about a dozen women and maybe one or two other guys. I am not overly self-conscious, but I would feel better if the mix was a little more even. It helps that the instructor is a guy, assisted by his wife.

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

33 Answers

Blackberry's avatar

Our stress relievers need to be more intense. Doing a little bending and breathing won’t curb my anger problems lol.

Cruiser's avatar

To me it is all about the stereotype associated with flexy bendy skinny women and why you don’t really see a lot of heavy women either. Bottom line is doing yoga kinda hurts at first and being a guy with a previously very wracked body…it took me over 6 months before I felt comfortable enough doing certain yoga poses. I did it because I had to to overcome a herniated disc…and over the years time and time again I see guys come and go and almost all of them just can’t get past that lack of flexibility and bail on doing it.

ucme's avatar

There aren’t? I wouldn’t know see because i’ve never been. One of the reasons for this abstinence, although not the primary one, is that i’d be terrified i’d fart. Seriously, I mean a right royal trouser trumpet in the middle of a particularly strenuous stretch. Oh the shame, not good.

Cruiser's avatar

@ucme Actually a fart in class is a compliment to the instructor in that you are relaxed enough in their class to “let go” as they say…I mean within reason though! I’m sure no one would appreciate you blessing the class with a ½ pounder garlic onion burger blast!

ucme's avatar

@Cruiser No quite. I’m sold, stay off the curry & i’m in.

marinelife's avatar

Guys don’t think yoga is tough enough.

LostInParadise's avatar

Not tough enough? I wonder how many of them can do the things I have seen people do, like put their foot behind their neck. It is funny how people’s perceptions run. When I took a class in Tai Chi the split was about even, with maybe a few more guys. Tai Chi is considered a martial art, so I suppose that makes it more acceptable to guys. Such silliness.

Cruiser's avatar

@marinelife I would agree with you there! I would challenge any guy to take Anna Forest’s, Shiva Rhea’s, Barron Baptiste’s, or especially a Bikram or an Iyangar class and see who is the tough guy now!!

wundayatta's avatar

Well, for me, the women have such an easy time of it—being naturally more flexible, and it makes me feel hopeless. I’ll never get there. I know it is good for me. I know how hard it is. But when people are bending forward from their waists, sitting on the floor, and I have to sit up on two blocks (with lots of cushioning on the parts of me touching the floor) just to be even able to lean forward…. well, I just don’t want to go back.

It’s stupid, because I really need it. It’s just so much work and I don’t even know if it’s helping. Progress is so slow.

Women don’t seem to have these issues, or if they do, it doesn’t stop them. Maybe because they are in the majority.

As to other guys—I have no idea. I’m sure some think it’s too feminine for them. Others don’t want to be bothered. Others probably think it’s too crunchy granola. Others don’t want to be made fun of by other guys.

But damn! If I were a single guy, the first place I’d go is a Yoga Ashram. Six women for every man. I’d love those odds!

Seek's avatar

Before I fell pregnant with my son, I did yoga and bellydancing. My husband was, at the time, hitting the gym several days a week – running for miles, weightlifting…

He did ten minutes of a Power Yoga video with me one day, and said “No more”.

Holding extreme stretches doesn’t really complement the power lifting types. When you can’t scratch your own back, how are you going to hold the Tree Pose?

Cruiser's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr The child’s pose was my least favorite…I mean what could be easier than laying forward over your knees?? I just couldn’t get comfortable with my gut being crammed into me!! I could hardly breathe!! I eventually got the hang of it….after 3 years!!

CMaz's avatar

I love yogurt. Yoga is too slow for me. But, when I dream of meeting hot chicks. It is always at yoga. GO figure.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

they can’t handle it – you see a lot more men giving up on Bikram yoga than you do women.

Blondesjon's avatar

Yoga makes you fart in front of chicks.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Blondesjon Don’t you do that anyway, in a marriage? Besides, that’s kind of the point of ‘wind-removing’ pose, but everyone understands.

Jabe73's avatar

Well speaking for myself personally, after working 12 to 16 hour days climbing up ladders and tanks, replacing defective motors and pumps that are very heavy and just working a very physical job in general with very little letup in horrible temperatures what I can say for me and other guys I know is we are just too tired. I get enough exercise and stretching as it is just from my job. I would rather a massage :)

Your_Majesty's avatar

Guys prefer muscle(and adrenaline) than flexibility(and relaxation),that’s why most of them love to pump the iron.

Cruiser's avatar

@Jabe73 I say this in all sincerity…you are a perfect candidate for yoga. Just think of an hour and a half…..90 whole minutes where you get to focus on just YOU!! You get to shed and leave behind those horrible temps, heavy motors, pumps and other industrial in your face “stuff” and just allow you to connect with your body and believe me when I say this….Relax

A massage will make you feel good for 30–60 minutes after it…yoga will make you feel good for a lifetime!

Seek's avatar

@cruiser, @jabe

I’m with @cruiser on this one

Take a half hour and lie on the ground, concentrate on your breathing, and do some simple stretches… It’s like giving yourself a massage – only better, because the masseuse isn’t there when it’s 3am and you have a cramp in your back. You can always kneel on your own bed, do three minutes of a cat stretch, and badabing, night-night!

mattbrowne's avatar

Same reason there are so few gals in pubs where men discuss sports results all evening.

Seek's avatar

@mattbrowne

I don’t see the correlation.

Besides, women go to bars all the time. Aren’t most of the servers in sports pubs female?

mattbrowne's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr – I meant pubs where sports results are discussed for hours. I’m not sure whether someone has done a study on it but it is my guess that if you observe 10,000 men and 10,000 women and count the minutes they discuss sports over the course of a year (or count the total number of people who can recall sports results between 1990–2000), the total number of minutes will be 5–10 times greater for the men compared to the women. It would be same if we took computer nerds discussing chips, memory, cpu architecture, graphics boards, turbo boost capabilities and so worth. Of course there are women who love to discuss sports results. And there are men who love yoga. All I was saying that for large number of people the interests are somewhat different. It might be biology. It might be societal norms and conditioning. Or both. For some topics I see a correlation between gender and interests. I don’t see a problem with this. If it’s 100% societal norms and conditioning it might be different in 2020 or 2030.

Seek's avatar

@mattbrowne

Still, I think the correlation wouldn’t be a bar so much as a… weekend softball team, or something. I mean, looking at people who take part in the hobby.

I think there is a considerably greater percentage of women who participate in “masculine” sports (football, baseball, hockey) than men who do yoga.

mattbrowne's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr – Alright, maybe the bar wasn’t the ideal example. And yes, there is greater percentage of women who participate in “masculine” sports, but this doesn’t necessarily mean the very same women enjoy discussing all the details of NFL, College Football, MLB, NBA, UEFA and so forth. Hey, remember 1999 Champions League Final when Man U scored two last-minute goals in injury time to win 2–1 against Munich, after having trailed for most of the match? Some men will even tell you the assist came from the left plus a bunch of other “useless” details. I can’t help memorizing these useless details. Maybe you are like me.

Seek's avatar

@mattbrowne

Sorry, I’m American. I don’t speak soccer. ^_^

But if you want to ask me about the stats in the MLB AL East, I’m your huckleberry.

mattbrowne's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr – How many women do you know who can compete with your knowledge of the MLB AL East stats?

Seek's avatar

There are probably quite a few. I see nearly as many women at Rays games as I do men. Same goes for minor league games. I don’t have many social contacts that are female, so I really couldn’t give a helpful answer.

rooeytoo's avatar

I know very few men who are into sports spectating enough to memorize endless stats.

But @mattbrowne – insists that there is this huge difference between men and women and sports interests. Women who like race cars and racing are not normal, etc. So @Seek_Kolinahr you might as well give up, you apparently are not normal either because you like something females are not supposed to like according to his way of thinking.

(I’m not normal either, I used to drive a race car)

Seek's avatar

@rooeytoo

Well, I like baseball, science fiction, Dungeons and Dragons, and the history of torture tactics. I think it’s safe to say I’ve known for a long time that I’m not “normal”.

However, it is obvious that there are as many women involved in sports as men. Hell, we’ve been competing in the Olympics since 1900.

rooeytoo's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr – Well when you come right down to it I don’t particularly fit the mold society has created for females either. But I resent being told I am not “normal” because of it!

With regard to sports, about a week ago I ran in a 5k fun run. On the same day there was a serious marathon, half marathon and 10k run. I don’t know the actual numbers but it appeared as if there were more women than men running. You know it was not many years ago that a woman in any of those events would have been a rarity. I think soon womens’ performance in sports that are not totally strength dependent will outshine those of most men. Then we will probably hear about how men and women learn sports differently and we must change the way sports are taught so that boys are not disadvantaged.

When I stop and reflect I actually don’t think there is much of anything “normal” about this whole world!

To the yoga experts, I am pretty fit but old and stiff, what sort of yoga should I try?

Jabe73's avatar

@Cruiser Like I said I get enough exercise & stretching from working. I will stick with the massage :)

@Seek_Kolinahr I am not sore and I am in very good shape plus I already do stretching exercises as it is. I have nothing against yoga so all the power to everyone that does it. Its just not for me.

mattbrowne's avatar

I don’t insist. Till now this was my perception of the world around me. I always challenge my assumptions. You all changed the world around me. So now I’m aware that there are plenty of women interested in all the topics mentioned by me ;-)

rooeytoo's avatar

@mattbrowne – well thank you, I feel normal again!!!

Answer this question

Login

or

Join

to answer.
Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
or
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther