Colleen Saidman is the “First Lady” of Yoga? /// Also, What’s Been Up With Us

Gordon M. Grant for The New York Times

Gordon M. Grant for The New York Times

Hope you all had a nice  time while we were away not caring about commercial yoga culture for a couple of weeks. We just loved the mental space it created. Fan-f’ing-tastic! Of course, during that time Aghori ended up writing a book. Well, half of a book. But, it’s coming along pretty steadily and should be done in the next few months. What’s it about? You know, all the stuff we talk about here, as well as the occult, which Aghori has always been head-over-heels for. (Son is a borderline Luciferian).

Anyway, we’re pretty sure a bunch of “crazy” “yoga” things occured while we’re away, but we didn’t catch any of it, so if you got anything to tell us about what we been missing, feel free to lay it on us.

We did happen to notice that the New York Times wrote a piece on Colleen Saidman, dubbing her the “First Lady” of yoga. Most what what is said in the piece is utter awfulness and pretty much picks up where this and this left off. What caught our eye was how annoying Saidman sounds as a teacher. She reads like one of these brash “shouters” in the vinyasa world. These “playful drill sergeant” we keep hearing about. Stuff like,

“‘You can’t let the arches of your feet collapse. The collapse of your arches is the collapse of your sex life’.”

And,

“‘Drop the pubic bone!’ she ordered,”

Why you shouting, hun?

There’s also this bit about not wanting to be a “guru.”

“‘I never want to be called a guru. All I want to do is guide women into their own bodies so they can be more content.’

I’m sorry. Was Colleen being a guru, like, an option or something?

There’s also this bit about Colleen feeling like she’s either A.) being forced to shill for weight loss, or B.) being forced to play second fiddle.

Recently Gaiam released her first solo video for the company, “Yoga for Weight Loss,” a title she dismissed as a sales ploy about which she had no input. “Any way to get a woman on the mat,” she said with a shrug. And during a March appearance on a “Fit Minute” segment on “The Couch,” a local CBS morning show, Ms. Saidman Yee expressed frustration that the producers wanted her merely for a mute demonstration of the poses her husband was describing. “Just another blonde doing Warrior Two,” she wrote in a weary-sounding e-mail afterward.

At this moment someone wants to tell me how if only the commercial yoga shitstem were changed, things would be better. How it’s not commercialism that’s the problem, but how commercialism is rendered.

Damn. Can’t wait for Aghori’s book.

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32 comments

  1. Didn’t Tara Stiles and Sadie Nardini before her say “I didn’t pick the title of the book (course, etc…)”. It’s called “creative control”, and I guess NOT every artistic creator has or wants it, and will sell out their soul for the mighty dollar. Funny how in the weight management book world (of which I’ve been an avid consumer for over 40 years), you are allowed to say (in the title) that your program is NOT for weight loss but for nutrition, eating awareness, consciousness raising, healing, etc., etc.

  2. amphibi1yogini

    “Any way to get a woman on the mat” ?!??…Women are 77% of class goers and 60% of home practitioners. And whoever still isn’t interested in yoga gets a little of it thrown in to their dance class.

    • Garuda

      Isnt “Any way to get a woman on the mat” the name of the manduka John Friend model of yoga mat?
      Doggonit!!!. This whole two weeks off nonsense is really crappy for my flow of snarkiness.

  3. Bryan

    With all due respect to the First Ladies who have used their position to help the world, “First Lady” is a title given to women based on their husband’s position. I think it fits Mrs. Yee just fine.

  4. Did she wear that ugly shirt to match the paisley sofa and the creepy painting behind her?
    Sorry, but if you’re gonna be called “First Lady” then discussion of apparel is wide open. In that regard, I’ll follow the Mrs. O website anyday over anything Colleen might offer.
    Would love to read Aghori’s book!

  5. Linda-Sama

    great. almost three months in India and I can’t wait to get back to North American yoga crap. just. can’t. wait.

  6. Linda-Sama

    “‘You can’t let the arches of your feet collapse. The collapse of your arches is the collapse of your sex life’.”

    is this medically proven? research, please. ;)

  7. Greenpoint

    the essence of “commercial yoga” is that it is void of substance, and the teachers/personalities that become popular/successful within it are those that exhibit those same characteristics…the more “empty/superficial” one is, the more “real/authentic” they are treated by the mainstream/western yoga scene…the whole idea of a First Lady anything is absurd and empty of meaning, so CS fits perfectly….

  8. Garuda

    Perhaps CS’ sex life has waned and the only excuse that ol Rodney could give her was that his arches had dropped. Perhaps she could dual purpose the sex life myth with McDonalds and sell some Golden Arches Support Orthotics…Goddammit Baba. I am rusty as hell. stop taking so much time off.

  9. Yoga Whelp

    Saidman’s selling yoga the same way Bikram does, and she deserves the same opprobrium – or not. If you don’t mind her “sex enhancement” marketing spin, then stop complaining about it in Bikram, who is only a million times more successful selling perfumed ass soap?

    For real people concerned about real health issues – you know, the Great Unwashed beyond the Yoga “1%” – fallen arches can cause all sorts of problems to your legs and back because for many of us the arches help maintain the balanced posture — and shock absorption — for walking. However, there are plenty of people with proverbial “flat feet.” It may be an issue, or it may not be?

    The best pose I know of for arches is Hero’s Pose, but it’s not necessarily so great for your knees. You have to work into it. However, it’s practiced as a gentle seated pose, so Saidman’s whole yoga presentation, as usual with these Blonde Betties, is way off. It’s not a standing pose, and the last thing you would do is bark someone into it

    I’m no expert but I know of no evidence linking arches to sex. The truth is, JFK could barely walk and he just lay back and let them ride him. Hey, you can have sex in a wheelchair? Arches? Who needs feet?

    Basically, this is more junk science from a yoga wino with a foot fetish.

  10. Yoga Whelp

    I was also struck by this –

    “Since marrying Rodney Yee, one of the most popular practitioners of the discipline (which he prefers to call an art form), in 2007, she has brought to it glamour, sensuality without the creepy overtones of recent yoga scandals, and unapologetic commercialism, endorsing wine and posing for Vanity Fair. ”

    “Without the creepy overtones of recent yoga scandals”? Are you fucking kidding me?

    Saidman’s affair with the married Yee – she was his student – was THE American yoga sex scandal of the past decade. Yee, like so many yogis, had been extolling the virtues of married life, and his career was completely derailed after he left his wife and kids for Saidman, after reportedly bedding down a bevy of his other students, too.

    His studio manager ratted him out, much as John Friend’s IT geek did. But of course, that’s all forgotten now. Why? There’s serious cash on the barrel head, folks!

    I don’t really care. The yoga world is chock-filled with little vixens and gold-diggers and it’s not like any yogi will ever pass a serious character test, anyway, but there’s got to so some truth in advertising here, and it’s offensive that yet another mainstream journalist would so freely perform oral service of this kind.

    But it does make for a happy media threesome. But did she ever consider interviewing Yee’s first wife? Hey Colleen, how do you get along with Rodney’s kids? Do you all do yoga together?

    I feel like such a party-pooper! Pass the Estancia…

    • without the creepy overtones of recent yoga scandals, and unapologetic commercialism, endorsing wine and posing for Vanity Fair. ”

      “Without the creepy overtones of recent yoga scandals”? Are you fucking kidding me?

      Saidman’s affair with the married Yee – she was his student – was THE American yoga sex scandal of the past decade.

      It’s not ignorance on the journalist’s part —- it’s cognitive dissonance!

  11. Garuda

    She will be on the Napa Valley yoga tour before you know it. Weekend yoga ‘retreats’ in the wonderful factory vineyards of Napa Valley. By day, showing up celebrelate, with the Pinot Noir tint on her shades, eating only the finest cuisine, then leaving early for a mani-pedi before the riff raff shows up.
    You Know
    YOGA

  12. Nick

    Missed ya welcome back.

    -Nick

  13. gross

    ewe ewe ewe! i kind of want to like her, but i can’t. there are some seriously amazing teachers in NYC who don’t sell shit…. but i am glad they aren’t so effing commercial that their classes are packed w/ neophytes and a 2hr and 15min class still costs $22-ish dollars and you leave having learned something important.

  14. Namastellen

    Saidman seems to have an in with the NYT. They love to lover her. “First Lady of Yoga” is a stupid meaningless title, but if used, I would think of someone like Lilias Folan, Angela Farmer, Judith Lasater, Cyndi Lee, or Sharon Gannon before Saidman.

    • Garuda

      “First Lady of Yoga” is tantamount to being accepted into The Junior League. What was is that Groucho said?’ I wouldnt want to be in any club that would have me as a member.’

    • Dyspeptic Skeptic

      Yes, but there would be no purpose to that, because none of them own a studio in the Hamptons where these editors hobnob in the Summer.

    • Hi, Namastellan. Perhaps even one of the actual “first ‘aides” of yoga. Then again, these sort of titles are just space filler for articles. Something flashy to get people’s attention. We get it.

    • gross

      sharon may be a good girl vegan, but she is mean and ruthless. so is cyndi. the others seem like solid people outside of “teaching yoga”.

  15. Yoga Whelp

    Do you think Sadie Nardini might qualify as the “Madame Butterfly” of Yoga? That last profile pic of hers was all sad-geisha-girl-drowning-in-booze-and-tears because her handsome sailor man’s gone.

  16. Cancelled my NYT sub over this and one other piece in same issue. Don’t need to pay for this drivel.

    • amphibi1yogini

      I can guess it was probably something in the “Key” section.
      I understand, I spent most of my working life as a go-fer for property managers … I’ve taken those same skills elsewhere … but that industry in New York City pretends it gritty-dressed-up-as glamor.

      With a touch of “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” thrown in …

  17. novecho

    “When the time is right” …..Dr. Scholls

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