Competitive Yoga to Be Added to 2090 Summer Olympics Games. {April Fools’ edition} ~ Josie Huang

Via elephant journal
on Apr 1, 2013
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Competitive yoga as an Olympics sport will no longer be a stretch.

From Lausanne, Switzerland: As the International Olympics Committee had recently voted to drop wrestling—the oldest competitive sports known in the world dated as far back as 3000 B.C. and part of the ancient Olympics in 708 B.C.—from the 2020 Summer Olympics Games, IOC is looking to replace it with a globally popular and widely represented sport to the mix.

Naturally, many contending popular longstanding sports, such as cricket, boast tremendous numbers of followers and lobbyists—both fans and players alike. But is there a sport counting over 300 million active players worldwide—more than soccer—but is not an Olympic sport?

Yesterday, the 15-member IOC executive board reached a decision after evaluating a deluge of information and statistics and voting based on 39 different criteria, including television ratings, anti-doping policies, global participation and popularity.

Yoga will soon be added to the 2090 Summer Olympics Games.

After the decision, the President of the IOC executive board, Jacques Rogers, expressed satisfaction: “Yoga is an ancient sport and combines both mental as well as physical fortitude.  The committee believes that it will make a fine addition to the Summer Games and we look forward to representatives and athletes from around the world joining us in 2020.”

In addition, the committee also indicated that the competition will most likely be open to all schools of Yoga. Finer details will need to be established.

That is, after a final vote at the IOC general assembly in September held at Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Roger Cooper, President and Founder of the United States Yoga Council, released the following statement:

“Yoga is a sport with centuries of history. Its mental and physical demands sometime far exceed those required by other sports. We are glad to see that our sport is being recognized at the highest level and look forward to assist the United States Olympic Committee in the assembly and training of our athletes.”

Though yoga’s originated in India more than 5,000 years ago, it has been increasingly popular around the world in recent decades and continues to reach more various demographics throughout the world. From a 1994 roper’s poll, six million Americans practice yoga. In a 2011 statistics study, there are approximately 15 million Americans who practice yoga, and the average annual increase of the number of people who practice yoga is estimated to be twenty percent.

Upon first thought, many may wonder: “How is yoga a competition?” Further, what would be the objective in such a competition in which athletes are not expected to put a ball in a goal of some sort nor are they pitted head to head? Clues may be observed in a recent event held by United States Yoga Council.

Between March 1st and March 3rd, the National Yoga Asana Championship was held in New York, where regional champions gather to perform a select set of asanas (postures) and optional ones selected by each competitor individually.  Each competitor will do a three-minute routine consisting of five required poses and two poses of their choice. Younger participants, ages 11 to 17, complete six rather than seven poses.

Competitors are judged on technical execution, level of difficulty, poise and composure, and grace of movement.  If you think all of these sound very similar, then you are very much correct. They are also some of the basic categories for judges in such Olympic events as gymnastics and diving.

Rachel Nahtsaufahsta, a U.S. Olympic gymnast who earned a Bronze Medal on the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team, explains:

“Between gymnastics and yoga, I believe they can be complementary but at the same time demand different set of physical skills. But fundamentally, competitive judging will need to rely on very much the same subjective measures as other Olympic sports not driven by time objective metric such as score or time.”

Although some may object to the notion of “competitive yoga,” almost all universally agree: Yoga is accessible to all ages and people from all walks of life in all conditions. It has tremendous benefits potential even if one practices only occasionally. Yoga as an Olympics sports will only bring the larger communities of all different cultures and participants together to share this path of honoring the unifying spirit of the Olympics. Whether one is a yoga athlete or novice yoga enthusiast, the paths are many, but the inspiration is based on such unifying meaning.

Certainly, with the 2020 Olympics Games is still seven years away, countries worldwide have ample time to prepare their athletes to enter the first Olympic Yoga Competition.


Like elephant Yoga on Facebook.

Ed: Kate Bartolotta


{Photo: by Ron Sombilon Media, Art and Photography via Flickr}


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23 Responses to “Competitive Yoga to Be Added to 2090 Summer Olympics Games. {April Fools’ edition} ~ Josie Huang”

  1. MatBoy says:

    I think the IOC should consider adding 'Cooking' as an olympic sport. It has been around for thousands of years, has billions of adherents, can require great physical and mental stamina, especially when shopping for vegetables in open markets is included, and is sure to appeal to a very broad television audience. This could also be a great revenue generator through advertisements for special ingredients and equipment. I say, leave yoga to the yogis and avoid advertisements for 'Nike Yoga'.

  2. andy says:

    April Fool's?

  3. HotYogi says:

    This is a sad April Fool's joke.

  4. Rogelio Nunez says:

    “Yoga is a sport with centuries of history, Rajasree, you lost all credibility….
    I hope this is a joke….

  5. John C says:

    “Competitve Yoga to be added to 2020 Summer Olympic Games”

    “Yoga will soon be added to the 2020 Summer Olympics Games.”

    “That is, after a final vote at the IOC general assembly in September held at Buenos Aires, Argentina.”

    It’s not added – story is written to make the reader believe it is.
    Poor writing.

  6. Josh says:

    Iyengar used to be a yoga judge in India! #TrueStory

  7. Mike says:

    Based on some of the comments, it's pretty obvious that people like John C, HotYogi, and Rogelio Nunez just can't take a joke. Lighten up… sheesh.

  8. Marina Kecman says:

    If it is a competition, it is not yoga! They may call it anyway they like, it still wouldn't be yoga.
    The sad part of it all is that people who didn't know anything about yoga before, would come to think it was a sport.

  9. Claire says:

    @Marina Kecman, why does yoga *have* to be anything? I'm sure artists such as Van Gogh and Picasso never intended for their works to be competitive. Similarly, novelists don't usually intend to write for the purpose of out-dueling each other. Further, did Emily Dickinson and Maya Angelou intend for their poetry to win literary prizes? And yet annual competitions that actively solicit entries for prizes are abundant in many fields that are not traditionally thought of as competitive. In the end, both of the aforementioned examples, like yoga, are works of self-expression. Credence of this story aside, why is it so bad for yoga's artistry and effort to be recognized and rewarded at the world stage?

  10. Jerzy says:

    I hope it is true so we can have "Drinking Corn Syrup" in Olympics in 2024

  11. Tako says:

    It is not Yoga competition, it is Yoga Asana competition… A huge difference.
    Anyway, on April fools day I wouldn't take it too seriously.

  12. barborasimkova says:

    Here's the actual list of sport shortlisted by the IOC ::

  13. Viswanath says:

    Promote BOLDLY that this is YOGA ASANA COMPETITION. Otherwise there will be a lot of opposition to this event from vested interests. [email protected]

  14. Viswnath says:

    That is what happening in the west. People went to India. Learnt a few things mostly concerned to the body and went back to their places. Then they started teaching yoga and you must be seeing what all that are happening in the name of yoga. Tell again and again to every one that yoga is not a mere body activity. It is more than that.

  15. Cole Bowen says:

    May I simply say what a comfort to discover someone that truly understands what they’re talking about over the internet. You actually know how to bring an issue to light and make it important. A lot more people need to read this and understand this side of the story. I was surprised you’re not more popular because you surely have the gift.

  16. bid-ninja says:

    Whats up, This can be a wonderful summation, I located your blog checking google for any similar subject and discovered this. I couldnt discover as well much other tips and data on this posting, so it was great to discover this one. I will almost certainly be returning to look at a number of other content which you have written another time.

  17. Yes, Yoga should be there. Nicely written post. I was reading an article and i found name of games only but your post is better than that post.

  18. Swami Param says:

    And, let’s make Baptism part of the Olympics. See who can hold their breath the longest under water. There are really only two types of Yoga: real and phony. Real Yoga is Hinduism…figure out the rest.

  19. vega na says:

    Competitive Yoga to Be Added to 2090 Summer Olympics Games or 2020?????

  20. fred09red says:

    I was all into the AlarioBros kinds of sports events, but this really sounds very interesting. I have been looking for such a long time for a leisure activity that would help me find my inner peace and feel good in my own body in the meantime. I think I want to enroll for some yoga classes too, in the near future.

  21. wendyRheaT says:

    OK, until reading the end of the title, I almost believed this one. And you know why I wouldn`t have been so surprised? Seriously, now, yoga is the basics of all kinds of human balance – the utter balance between your thoughts and your health. I for one find it very relaxing when I practice golf. It gives me a sense of meditation and strategy exercising at the same time. Plus I got these golf practice mats lately, it is a big splendor to play on it, I am telling you.

  22. fred09red says:

    I enjoy sports, but I don`t practice them a lot. I am, how shall I put this, the man behind who takes pleasure into betting, watching, debating championship performances and so on. I may not get a saying in this, but ever since I found this url, I cannot get enough of it.

  23. wendyRheaT says:

    To be honest, I was living under the impression that yoga cannot ever be a competitive sport. Just as I see it, yoga is a way of finding inner balance and managing to escape from the surrounding noise and fervor just to make peace with yourself and cultivate your spirit. Maybe this competition is more like a demo. However, I can tell you I feel so fresh and fit after my workout program and a yoga session works just fine afterwards.