‘Yes’ to yoga, ‘maybe’ to the tights


A new clothing-optional yoga class coming to St. Albert intends to stretch your body … and your mind.

Instructor Becca Pati stated that the intention behind Friday’s (Dec. 2) class is to improve people’s psychological wellbeing just as much as help them physiologically.

“The message that I’ve been promoting over the last year or two is self-love, self-worth and loving the skin that you’re in. Our self-worth and beauty comes from the inside out.”

She reinforced that people can wear whatever they want, or not.

“It doesn’t matter what they choose to wear as long as they feel comfortable and they feel supported and beautiful. It’s very exciting to think of something that gives people an opportunity to be expressive in their practice of yoga but also really find whatever limit is good for them.”

The class will be conducted with low light or candles to help people relax and offer a buffer for people as they work through their comfort zones.

There has been a small trend of clothing-optional or nude yoga classes in recent years. This comes courtesy of organizer CottonTail Corner, a naturist organization that maintains a clothing-optional beach near Devon and hosts nude swims and other events at Edmonton pools.

“We’re naturists. It’s a way of life that promotes respect for yourself and respect for others and the environment,” explained representative John Martens, noting how yoga is good for the mind but offering this class makes it also about promoting body positivity.

“We believe in body acceptance. It doesn’t matter how old you are, how young you are, what scars, piercings, tattoos you have … what your nationality is, what your body weight is. What matters to us is the person as a whole and accepting each other as equals.”

Pati said that both men and women are able to register for the 75-minute session. She hopes that people keep their minds and their hearts open to the experience, even though it might not be for everybody.

“It’s a small niche obviously. It’s not going to be mainstream. People aren’t going to flock to it but there’s something really beautiful about being able to wear whatever you want to wear in a yoga class and just breathe and be very deeply connected to your self … instead of having to look a certain way, feeling insecure about the way your body is appearing in a posture. It’s quite amazing to me how much emphasis we put on the physical body and not enough on the interior self.”

“Your body may not what society says is the best shape but it’s a great body to be in and you should be proud of it,” Martens ended, expressing an interest in hosting this event again in the future.

Participation is $20 per person and can only be obtained through the organizer via email. Details are at www.cottontailcorner.ca.


About Author

Scott Hayes

Scott Hayes joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2008. Scott writes about the arts, entertainment, movies, culture, community groups, and charities. He also writes general news, features, columns and profiles on people.