Yoga, Inc. is a documentary that was created to ask a very important question… Yoga has become big business, but can it survive with its good karma intact? The documentary was written and directed by John Philp and has been around since 2007, but it really foresaw what is happening with yoga studios today. They are becoming McYoga chains, highly stylized, and commercially driven. Not all studios are venturing away from the traditional concepts, but the small, non-progressive studios are falling out of favor and slowly being replaced by yoga box-shops. Its a little tragic.
Yoga is a journey and I support the evolution, but worry that authenticity is on the back burner for many studio owners. Yoga is a multi-billion industry and in our capitalistic society, it is easy to see how it could be swept up and carried away by the “drink the Kool-Aid” crowd. The movie touches a lot on Bikram Choudhury’s entrepreneurial ways and his lawsuits against any practicing studios that use his styles and coined words; and on YogaWorks, the Starbucks of yoga schools.
If you are looking for an interesting film to discuss at your next dinner party this is definitely worth looking into. You can see 51 minutes of the film here . Check it out.