Why Bother?

Last week I was explaining the yoga competition to someone who had never heard of it before. He had asked what I had been up to lately, and since that’s about all I have been up to lately that’s what I talked about. He was hanging in the conversation right up until he asked this question, “So, are you gonna win?”

Nope. Not at all.

My response confused him which I can understand. In our culture, if you enter a competition, and spend months training for it, it’s pretty normal to hope to win or at least place.

His response,”So why bother?”

I shared that I had used this as a way to push myself, and I had done it for personal reasons. I wasn’t at a level yet where I would be a contender for winning or placing (unless some people don’t show up or have the worst demonstration ever. please show up and do well. you know who you are). Plus, I wasn’t interested in trying to train to get myself to that level. I just wanted a personal challenge, and that’s what I was getting.

Then he gave me an odd look and said, “Are you one of those exercise people?”

One of the exercise people hard at work.

What do you say to that? I’m not sure I knew what he meant. I didn’t think it was worth the time to find out. I said, “I guess so,” and that seemed to satisfy him.He then started talking about his back problems and how bad he felt physically lately.

I stood there and listened nodding my head, but it was a strange experience.  How do you question someone for being “an exercise person” and then start talking about how your body aches and you need to do something about it?

If nothing else, I want to say that there are plenty of reasons to bother with a regional compeition even if you have no intention of winning or placing. This experience has pushed me to do more than I ever thought possible. I’ve said that before, but it’s really true. It’s not like I have super-human yoga abilities, but I have enjoyed watching myself progress in some postures. Ok – I’ve probably progressed in at least all the ones I’m doing for competition but some progress is more obvious than others.

If you’re curious about it, look into it. My group that I train with is a great bunch. I bet others are the same. It’s not about doing the best or the longest posture. It’s about personal growth and supporting one another along the way. Plus, you get to have confusing converstaions with people from time to time which always adds unexpected flare to life!


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Simmm
    Oct 24, 2012 @ 11:48:56

    Hmm yeah, interesting situation indeed, especially when he started lamenting about his back issues. In situations like that I usually briefly mention that many, many people have gotten relief from their severe back issues from yoga and then say no more. If they’re interested, they’ll ask. I cannot NOT say anything because I would feel like I have a magic potion and I’m not sharing, but I try to keep it super short and sweet. Difficult.


  2. LeighAHall (@LeighAHall)
    Sep 07, 2014 @ 09:48:50

    Why Bother? http://t.co/f57mJCJQuQ #bikramyoga #yogaholicsmag


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