Images of women of color and women with curvy bodies are often missing from yoga advertisements. The lack of representation of more diverse bodies can be discouraging to many people who may want to try yoga and who may benefit greatly from it.
That trend was tested with “Every Body Yoga: Let Go of Fear, Get on the Mat, Love Your Body” by world renowned yoga teacher Jessamyn Stanley.
Stanley flips the script on the stereotypical representations of yoga practitioners by offering a guide to yoga that can appeal to all bodies.
“I wrote this book for every fat person, every old person and every exceptionally short person,” Stanley writes. “I wrote it for every person who has called themselves ugly and every person who can’t accept their beauty. I wrote it for every person who is self-conscious about their body.”
As someone who has practiced yoga for six years, Stanley understands that yoga is beyond physical benefits. “
The real reason people become obsessed is because it is so therapeutic,” she said.
Inside her book, readers will find easy-to-follow instructions as well as emotional accounts of struggles Stanley has faced throughout her life. As a teacher, it was important for her to be transparent with her students and followers.
“I had to talk about the other aspects of my life in order to really express why the practice has had such a strong impact on my life and why I continue to do it,” Stanley said.
Stanley currently travels the world teaching yoga and is a body-positive advocate. She lives in Durham, North Carolina. To connect, online at jessamynstanley.com, Instagram: @mynameisjessamyn, Twitter: @JessNotJazz, Snapchat: @mynameisjessamy, Facebook: /mynameisjessamyn.
“Every Body Yoga: Let Go of Fear, Get on the Mat, Love Your Body” is available for $16.95 at bookstores and on Amazon.com.