EXPERTS SEE INCREASE IN YOGA INJURIES

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An increasing number of yoga-related injuries now being observed across the country. And experts say it's not just beginners who are injured, it's also experienced yoga practictioners who are being pushed by unqualified instructors. (In the US, there is currently no federal supervision of yoga programs.)

Club Industry reports that part of the reason for the reported rise in yoga-related injuries can be attributed to the practice's recent spread into the mainstream along with other factors, such as inexperienced teachers and overcrowded classes, said Arkady Shirin, a 'traditional' yoga instructor who is an outspoken proponent of safety reforms for the industry.

Clearly, though, it's not the sheer volume of new clients that's responsible for the injuries,' says Arkady Shirin, a 'traditional' yoga instructor who is an outspoken proponent of safety reforms for the industry. 'It's a combination of factors, such as the large number of poorly-trained yoga instructors practicing in the US and the emphasis on large classrooms of students packed into tight quarters for these 'hybrid' forms of yoga. Most of these adulterated forms of yoga are hazardous and completely negate many of the benefits of the practice.' (MTV recently released a 'fast-paced' hybrid yoga video featuring 'motivating' rock tunes-- 'inspired by the Vinyasa style of yoga with an MTV spin.')

'Consumers need to be cautious when choosing how and where to practice yoga,' said Halbrecht. 'Physical fitness should be about fun and conditioning not about incapacitating and painful injury. Something must be done to alert consumers about the risks before the good name of an ancient practice is itself a victim.'