The 27-year-old anonymous model behind the wildly popular Instagram Nude Yoga Girl has inspired a movement that’s spreading across Instagram: She’s invited anyone willing to strike a pose naked to share a picture with the hashtag #NYGyoga. As of publication, nearly 500 people have participated — and the purpose of the call doesn’t stem from a place of voyeurism.
“The message of my account is, ‘You are beautiful exactly the way you are,’” Nude Yoga Girl said, according to Cosmopolitan. “Showing nudity in a non-sexual way felt like a new way to support the message.”
Take a look at some of the most striking photos inside.
Bend and Breathe Yoga Studio in Hollywood offers naked yoga classes.
The female-only class is being offered once a month at Bend and Breathe Studio, 1864 Radius Drive, with the aim of empowering women, encouraging self-love and body appreciation.
“You think of women nudity, you think ‘vulgar.’ You think they’re being used or they’re a victim of some sort. And in this, it’s like the complete opposite,” says Alyssa Berman, owner of the studio. “Everybody looks good naked, no matter what. Because that’s who you are. You don’t have to be a certain way.”
I recently returned from a Vipassana retreat (10 days of silence with approximately 11 hours of daily meditation). To say it was intense is a bit of an understatement, so I will be doing a few different posts about my experience. This first one is just to break the ice, so to speak.
This month, I attended my retreat in the small town of Kaufmann, Texas. I am so very grateful I didn’t wait until the session in July because southern Texas is hot. It’s soupy, muggy, sticky hot. I felt overdressed in my modest garb, and each walk from the meditation hall to the dorm room left me feeling like a greased pig. (Okay, perhaps the metaphor only occurred to me because it sounded like something they might say in Texas.)
The subject of naked yoga seems to always draw in mixed reactions from everyone in the yoga community. Some see it as a huge step towards “self-centering” and letting go of attachments, while others see the nakedness element as completely unnecessary in the practice of yoga.
The following naked yoga photos were sent in to us by Nicolas Tsampathonis, a yoga, AcroYoga, and Pilates teacher from France. We thought we’d share the photos with you to show that despite the debates surrounding the practice of naked yoga, it can show us the beauty of the bare human body while holding yoga postures.
I have been practicing Yoga completely naked for around two years now, mostly within my home or in my concealed garden. The benefits that I have found have been incredible, inducing life-altering changes about how I feel about myself and also how I perceive my body.
What does a clothes free yogini do when it’s her birthday? Birthday suit yoga of course! Our clothes free yogi profile features someone who is a newer follower to our Instagram feed. We were immediately drawn to her outspoken engaging posts and her loving expression of clothes free yoga poses. In this profile she shares her thoughts on the sensual but not sexual nature of clothes free yoga. We are thrilled to be celebrating the birthday our December clothes free yogi you should know. Thanks you Niecy you for sharing her birthday yoga practice and thoughts. Happy birthday.
CFL – Tell us about your yoga practice when did you start? How did you learn? What do you get out of it?
I discovered yoga through Dance, and I took my first class ever in 2009. We often practiced warm ups influenced by vinyasa Yoga before getting into technique. I lost the little connection I had to yoga once I went to college in 2011, but I slowly discovered it again in 2013. Making it about 3 years since I’ve established a conscious and consistent practice. I learn from various teachers and DVDs, and I eventually learned to teach myself inversions and arm balances. I’ve always felt a burning blissful connection to Yoga. It makes me feel at ease, and I absolutely love the sense of accomplishment it gives me. It’s had an overall positive impact on my life and that’s what makes it so important to me.
CFL – Why do you practice yoga clothes free? What are the benefits or drawbacks?
I can’t even recall the actual point where I specifically decided to adopt a nude practice, but every morning (for as long as I can remember) stretching in the morning was just a natural daily ritual. Once I began to understand yoga past a beginner’s perspective, practicing naked just sort of came about. It was not until this year, however, that I made my naked practice public. I suppose the answer to the question is, I practice clothes free yoga because it feels natural to me. It is like my diary, where I can let everything out with no concern about judgement or embarrassment. It’s just something for me to admire. Of course, when we speak publicly, it also warms my heart to be so well received by a whole world of beautiful, strong clothes free yogis. The only drawback I have had faced thus far, was gathering the courage to make my practice public. It took me a while to let go of the worries about what others think, but I have definitely let go of that concern at this point.
CFL – You post your clothes free yoga or as you call it your ‘birthday suit yoga’ on social media. Have you had to deal with any inappropriate responses or misunderstanding about why you do that? If so how do you adresss it?
I have gotten more than enough of some rather inappropriate responses. Initially, it irritated me, because I have a difficult time assuming people understand me. I then went through a phase of draining rants and extensive captions defending my decisions, but then I realized that people just don’t see things the way I do. If someone were to send me an inappropriate picture or message today, I would simply block them. I know that my intention ls are clear, regardless of what others think and I will continue to share my art with people who are willing to openly receive it. As for everyone else… I’ll just ignore them.
CFL – You sometimes describe yourself as a nudist in your social media profile. What does being a nudist mean to you?
When I call myself a nudist, I basically am just identifying with people that are mentally and physically comfortable with being nude. There’s no certain type of nudist, and you don’t have to be naked all the time. We just prefer to be naked, and when we are naked, we don’t have to think twice about it.
CFL – Other than doing clothes free yoga do you spend much time clothes free in everyday life?
I spend a great deal of my time clothes free. I’m a home body, so daily chores like cooking or cleaning are definitely done in my most comfortable state. I do have male roommates though, so out of respect for them I wear a robe when I’m not home alone!
CFL – Anything else you want to share with our readers?
Living the clothes free life helped me to accept and love my body 100%. I can’t hide from anything when I’m nude. For most of us, clothes cover the scars and body parts we’re ashamed of. You can wear certain colors and garments to alter your appearance in its natural state. People who are willing to take their clothes off AND post it to Social Media are saying ‘thank you’ to the scars for helping them grow. They’re saying ‘I appreciate you’ to the stretch marks, cellulite and rolls. That’s bravery! That’s LOVE!!
Clothing-optional yoga class all about body positivity
Instructor Becca Pati stated that the intention behind Friday’s (Dec. 2) class is to improve people’s psychological wellbeing just as much as help them physiologically.
“The message that I’ve been promoting over the last year or two is self-love, self-worth and loving the skin that you’re in. Our self-worth and beauty comes from the inside out.”
She reinforced that people can wear whatever they want, or not.