“HP Yoga, a sub-discipline of Wholistic Fitness, will never produce suppleness before creating the functional strength to protect it and make it a useful tool toward Enlightenment.”
– coach ilg in padmahamasana captured by famed photographer, www.doritthies.com

Surprisingly enough, more and more Seekers are finding their Way to the Wholistic Fitness Temple through the Path of one of my Five Fitness Disciplines; High Performance Yoga®. I say ‘surprisingly’ because back in 1985, my publishers did not even allow me to use the term Yoga in my book, THE OUTDOOR ATHLETE! They said that the term ‘yoga’ would scare too many athletes away.

i admit my personal command of the 600+ yoga postures (known as ‘asana’) is nowhere near the caliber or grace of many ‘studio’ yogis. To this day, i’ll come into the studio to teach my yoga class tight and acidic from hammering a 70-mile bike ride or hard squat session in the gym. So what?! My comparative lack of ‘studio yogi’ suppleness despairs me not in the least. For just being niftily hyperflexible is not what yoga is about. Too many ‘studio yogis’ create lax ligaments and tendons from overstretching, suffering from the same egoic malaise as the bodybuilders whom they often poke fun at for their muscle-bound armor. Often, studio yogis are scared to do a mountain trail run with me for fear of twisting their overly limp ankles! Remember, “yoga” means “union”! Each of our physiologic systems should be in Balance with each other; strength, endurance, and suppleness!

Based on such an honoring of the genuine notion of Yoga; i created High Performance Yoga or simply “HP Yoga.” Throughout the 1980’s, using direct experience gleaned from many yoga Teachers of the East, i snync’d that wisdom with my training in Western Sport Physiology. i find it very ‘non-yogic’ to attempt to squish, twist, and smash a North American into an South Indian physical practice. We, in the West, do not grow up in our formative years sitting for hours in Lotus Posture. Nor is our constitution – skeletal, physiologic, psychologic – anywhere near the ballpark of a South Indian.

When you purchase a HP Yoga DVD or take one my yoga classes, or follow my sequences in my books, you can be assured that three decades of experience born from elite outdoor sport performance will never produce suppleness before the strength to protect it. And, if HP Yoga can get a rock stiff ultra distance runner like me to over come a broken back and go on to world class sport performances in several sports? You can dang well trust that HP Yoga is going to be YOUR best friend.

Leave a Reply