At least two studios – the Aura and Ingara, where Hatha yoga is practiced – have reportedly received letters from Nizhnevartovsk officials, according to The Moscow Times.
The two studios hold their classes in a city-owned stadium and a public meeting hall called Samotlor. Officials are banning Hatha yoga courses from being taught in municipal buildings in an effort to curb the popularity of new movements and religions cults in Russia.
One of the letters from Nizhnevartovsk’s first deputy head Sergei Levkin to the head of social and youth policy, Marianna Parfenova, requests that she take every step available to prevent Hatha yoga from being taught in the stadium.
The departments for physical culture and education reportedly received a second letter discussing the ‘occult character’ of Hatha yoga.
Hatha yoga is the most widely practiced type of yoga in America and focuses on meditative breathing and asanas, or poses.
Inga Pimenova, the teacher at Ingara Yoga, said to Russian news outlet Kommersant: “Everyone is shocked and already giggling as we are compiling documents to prove that we are not at all a sect but a health course.” Continue reading >>