Five Shorts To Make You Roar!
Welcome to your fabulous Celebrity Yoga series. Besides yoga movies, actors, musicians, and professional athletes, we will look at politicians and world leaders (HINT: A famous baddie in history was intrigued with yoga) and Yoga Celebrities – well known Yogis and Yoginis who have taught valuable lessons that have enhanced not only our physical health, but our spiritual well-being. Although the art of Yoga has been around for centuries, and has gained significant recognition and acceptance in many Western settings, the practice is still misunderstood and misrepresented at times. Is Yoga ever accurately portrayed on the big screen? On the small screen for that matter? Of course at Yogasync.tv it is! But what about Hollywood’s take on Yoga? This post offers several moments from both film and television that feature Yoga.
Here Comes The Boom
Nico, played by Bas Rutten, is some kind of all-purpose wellness guru. Rutten is a real life retired UCC and MMA fighter who, as Nico, now moves with a kind of endearing fluidity between one gym activity to another. First he’s working with Scott Voss (Kevin James) using jabs, feints, and a heavy bag. Then quick-as-you-please he morphs into a spinning master “OK ladies, let’s warm up those legs!” But in the clip here, he is shown as a Yoga instructor. At first, everything seems as it should. Nico is helping the class relax, “Om, Om,” he chants. But shortly he sees his pal Scott through the glass, and as he makes his way out of the room, he engages in some behavior that is not very Yogi-like. The clip is not in English, but the meaning is clear and funny.
The silliness continues in the next example from Couple’s Retreat. Several couples played by Vince Vaughn, Kristen Bell, Jason Bateman, Malin Akerman and more vacation together at a lush island retreat. They decide to take a “Couples Yoga” class, led by an insanely inappropriate instructor (Carlos Ponce). While everyone seems to be taking things seriously, it’s Salvadore the Yogi that demonstrates poses in unexpected ways.
Forgetting Sarah Marshall
Another comedic scene (that may have been cut from the original) offers Kristen Wiig in Forgetting Sarah Marshall. As “Prana”, she’s a Yogini who is a smug, condescending suck-up. And she’s also hysterical – working with Jason Segel, Russell Brand, and Kristen Bell.
Yoga is used for humor on the smaller screen as well. Here’s a look at some TV shows that incorporated a few asanas for a laugh:
The Big Bang Theory
If you have ever watched The Big Bang Theory, you can’t imagine the words “Sheldon Cooper” and “yoga” together in the same sentence. Yet here, Sheldon is working through some moves with neighbor Penny, adding his usual hilarious commentary.
Yoga also surfaces on Web TV as well. In the web series Hardly Working, produced by College Humor, a group of employees take advantage of a noon-time Yoga class. What the instructors do and say makes no sense, but the results are pretty damn funny.
While it is disconcerting when something we love is not always depicted quite truthfully, these examples allow us to laugh at ourselves and not take our practice too seriously – at least not all the time.
Yogasync Me! Feel good after a laugh? You’ll feel just as much delight after you try this well loved, yet seldom practiced yoga movement: