This article, featured in New York Magazine, is yet another example of the clash of an eastern tradition in a western world. Popular yoga clothing brand Lululemon Athletica takes a lot of heat from the yoga purists, who claim their outrageous prices and high-fashion imaging of an ancient, spiritual practice (one that requires nothing, not even clothing) have undermined yoga…possibly forever. From the opposite side of the table, Lulu supporters praise the company for its high quality and cute designs. Not to mention: it’s getting more people on the mat.
This battle is not new. As Lululemon strives to make yoga more accessible to the masses, if only on a purely aesthetic level (meaning, those of us who practice yoga for long muscles and a tight ass), the philosophic message of yoga is still more likely to reach those masses when they find themselves on the mat. A means to an end, perhaps?
Take Lululemon for what it is – a retailer with a bottom line in a tough economy – but also take into account the community they’ve created by offering free yoga in an overpriced city, a charitable giving program and an impressive grassroots action campaign. Read on and decide for yourself.
SL NOTE: I have personal experience that their clothing IS high quality, despite the price tag. Plus I am currently obsessed with this top!