Before we dive into Nude Yoga, let me share with you a few nasty and insistent comments from my inner critic “Roxy”, which I have been plagued with for most of my teenage and adult life:
- Your breasts could be bigger. Men prefer bigger breasts. Maybe you should get implants?
- You need to work out more! Why don’t you have a flat stomach? No one wants to see fat stomach rolls on a woman.
- You’re too short. You need longer legs to be sexy.
- Your yoni is uneven and not symmetrical. Make sure you keep the lights off during sex. Oh, and get a wax.
- You’re already getting forehead wrinkles. Too soon for botox?
- Your hair is so frizzy. Get the straightener on that!
She’s harsh, isn’t she? And there is plenty more where that came from…
With the influence of mainstream media, we tend to be over judgmental and critical of our body’s “imperfections”. Our societal conditioning glorifies skinny and toned (for women) and strong and buff (for men), but the reality is…we all come in different shapes & sizes, and trying to fit into the media’s ideal of beauty can be both impossible and painfully soul-destroying.
Rather than having a society focused on health and embracing one’s natural uniqueness, we have a society geared towards physical appearance and encouraging people to change something about themselves to fit into a certain box of beauty.
The media skilfully plays on women’s (and increasingly men’s) body insecurities to get them to spend money and support the beauty industry, which is is a multi-billion dollar business. Strategically, though magazines, TV shows, movies, billboards, Instagram, even pornography, we’re “educated” from a young, precious age what it looks like to be beautiful, and we’re told we need external things to become more beautiful, because – drum roll –
We are not OK just as we are.
We’re reminded repeatedly that beauty exists outside of ourselves and can be achieved through nice clothes, jewelry, makeup, cosmetic surgery, long lashes, long limbs, long hair etc. Once we have all this, then we will be beautiful.
No wonder women have so many body image issues.
For these reasons, I began a revolution – a nude revolution – where we strip away the BS (and the clothes) and get back to our real, authentic, natural selves! Our naked selves. With this fire in my belly, I launched my first Women’s Nude Yoga workshop almost two years ago, and I have never been the same since (and nor have the women who come to my classes). Since practicing nude yoga, both in my lounge room and in a class environment, the barrage of nasty inner comments have dimmed drastically and do not control my life or my body anymore.And it’s all fromthe simple task of being naked.
Having toured around Australia three times teaching these transformational women’s nude workshops, here is what I discovered:
1. Your IMPERFECTIONS are sexy!
When I sat on my yoga mat and looked out to the sea of naked women in front of me, all I saw was utter beauty. Sure, each woman had their “flaws”, but I found them alluring, unique and absolutely gorgeous.
It’s what made them different, quirky, sexy.
Then I realised, I am like that too! It was a huge turning point for me in embracing and loving my imperfections. Brene Brown says: “People can’t relate to perfect.”
And it’s so true. People relate to other’s imperfections and vulnerabilities – it makes them feel real, normal and not alone in this world of superficialness. If someone is too perfect, they appear untrustworthy and you will seek out their chink in their armor to see if they are human.
You see, we relate to human-ness, not perfection, and when we’re naked we see nothing but our human-ness; there is nothing and nowhere to hide. And that’s sexy!
2. You are FEMININE at your core.
Something magical happens during Nude Yoga; we don’t just strip back our clothes, we strip back layers and layers of masks, barriers, inhibitions and armour we gather to protect ourselves in the masculine world. It’s not about doing downward dog naked, it’s about entering into a portal of shedding what no longer serves and dropping deep into our feminine essence, which lives at our core. As soon as the light goes out and our sarong comes off:
We let our guard down.
We become vulnerable.
You see, vulnerability is the epitome of femininity and when we allow ourselves to be raw on the yoga mat, we allow ourselves to be raw off the mat – in our work, home life and relationships.
It’s when we are vulnerable that our femininity is given a chance to shine through.
3. Your CONFIDENCE is not skin deep.
Our society is much more focused on how we look, rather than how we feel. After practicing only one nude yoga class, my students tell me they feel so much more confident both in their skin and in themselves as a being. When we are naked more often and witness other people’s naked bodies, our confidence and self-esteem naturally grow. Why? Because it demystifies the human body.
We see that we all have ‘imperfections’, and we grow an appreciation for our bodies, rather than a judgment. We start being much more gentle on ourselves because we realize that true happiness emanates from the inside and that all bodies are beautiful when you strip away pretense, conditioning, criticism and judgment. By being naked in a group full of random women, we fully own and inhabit our physical body – we show up fully for ourselves.
And when we honour our naked temple, we are more comfortable in our skin, which leads to more overall confidence. It has a profound domino affect.
4. The key to true happiness: FREEDOM!
Did you know that nudists are the happiest people on earth? Yep! Want to know why? Because they feel free! Statistically, they’re also more confident, more comfortable in their skin and more accepting of other people. Whether it’s walking around the house, sleeping naked or sitting on a nudist beach, being naked, brings about feelings of liberation, freedom, joy, happiness and inner peace – qualities we are all striving to embody, but which can be difficult to achieve in the controlling, constricting paradigm we live in.
The pure euphoria you feel when doing a naked sun salutation, bushwalking with your boobs out or skinny dipping in the ocean far outweighs any paid experience for happiness.
Nudity is the final frontier of freedom!
5. Nudity allows you to rediscover your SENSUALITY.
It’s virtually impossible not feel more sensual when we’re naked. Naturally, our skin feels more sensation, we are more aware of our body, our scent, our breath, our physical touch, textures on our body, our movement, our thoughts, our feelings. All of our senses are heightened.
Practicing Nude Yoga is a highly pleasurable experience; we realize that we are not separate from pleasure. We can experience pleasure in any given moment, no matter how mundane, simply through the pure act of presence.
A lot of my students comment how much more present, and thus, sensual they feel during and after a nude yoga class, with most women saying they sleep the best they have slept in years (or) have the best sex they have had in years after a nude yoga class. This is because when we are more sensual, we are more in touch with our body’s needs, wants and desires, which also helps us know what we want in the bedroom. When we are in more pleasure (than pain) we have a heightened intuition, and we are also less likely to experience disease, illness or physical or emotional pain.
Sensual pleasure is a great pain relief, anti-depressant and anti-ageing tool! Win, win.
Give Nude Yoga a try!
Take a moment to think about the amount of time you waste on focusing on your insecurities and caring about how you look. Now imagine where you could effectively re-channel this energy for the greater good?
Imagine living in a world where we accepted our imperfections, quirks and flaws, rather than endeavored to change them.
And imagine living in a society where nudity was not prohibited or illegal and rather embraced and celebrated. This is my mission!
Let’s #freethenipple together!