PLEDGE NOW
Where Yoga Gets Crazy

We’ll explore the body and mind-bending world of competitive yoga.

Yoga teacher Kyoko Katsura demonstrates standing bow puilling, one of the poses that could be seen during the National Yoga Asana Championships in New York, Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2012. Katsura will be a competing in the national competition which will take place from March 2-4 in New York City. (AP)

Yoga teacher Kyoko Katsura demonstrates standing bow puilling, one of the poses that could be seen during the National Yoga Asana Championships in New York, Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2012. Katsura will be a competing in the national competition which will take place from March 2-4 in New York City. (AP)

Yoga has become a big deal in America.  Everywhere you turn, it seems, there’s somebody with a yoga mat.  On their way to class.  To sweat and bend and get centered.  Limber.  Some say alive.  One of those “come to yoga” acolytes was Benjamin Lorr.  He went from chubby mess to yoga svelte.

And then on – to competitive yoga. Yes, there is competitive yoga.  His was hot, Bikram-style.  He found a lot of pain there.  And some joy.  And a lot of insight into the world of yoga.

This hour, On Point:  the body and mind-bending world of extreme yoga.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Benjamin Lorr, author of Hell-Bent: Obsession, Pain, and the Search for Something Like Transcendence in Competitive Yoga.

Cynthia Wehr, USA YOGA winner 2005 and 2007.

From Tom’s Reading List

New York Times “How many times have you found yourself clicking through a slide show about someone who has lost lots of weight? In the last one I saw, a woman who lost 160 pounds took a picture every 20 pounds or so. The images were riveting, even though it often looked as if she were standing in a closet under a fluorescent light, her hair stringy, her face un-made-up. The human body amazes — both in its grotesqueness and beauty. Today, physical transformation is the stuff of reality TV shows; a century ago, it was the foundation of Bernarr Macfadden’s media empire. His flagship magazine, True Story, published readers’ accounts of miraculous weight loss. And the miracles rarely stopped at the shedding of pounds: health and vitality were regained, marriages reinvigorated, purpose found.”

Excerpt

Use the navigation bar at the bottom of this frame to reformat the excerpt to best suit your reading experience.

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
RECENT
SHOWS
Jun 9, 2016

Newly-minted college graduates on the job hunt. We’ll look at who’s hiring, starting salaries, and strategies for landing that first job.

 
Jun 9, 2016

Europe, India and China, are taking on American tech giants over privacy, monopolies, and more. We’ll look at the global technology pushback against the U.S.A.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Jessica Valenti: ‘Objectification Is About Dehumanizing People’
Wednesday, Jun 8, 2016

“There is some power in laying claim to the word victim.” — Jessica Valenti on the Stanford sexual assault case, and the importance of language.

More »
Comment
 
Why The ‘Roots’ Remake Matters (And What Stays The Same)
Tuesday, Jun 7, 2016

The recent remake of “Roots” on the History Channel makes important changes, Morehouse College’s Stephane Dunn argues. But it also holds true to the original story.

More »
Comment
 
Former Trump Advisor Roger Stone: ‘Trump’s Going To Be The Next President’
Monday, Jun 6, 2016

Longtime political consultant Roger Stone apologizes for his “two martini tweets,” even as he predicts Donald Trump will be the next U.S. president.

More »
Comment