Citizens of Nizhnevartovskin, Russia can now practice yoga in peace, after the city government reversed a ban placed on the practice. Last month, government officials sent letters to yoga schools throughout the city notifying them that their Hatha yoga classes needed to be suspended due to their “occult” nature, with Vocativ reporting that according to Kommersant, a Russian publication, the city literally banned yoga in municipal buildings. Lyubov Gorodilova, Nizhnevartovsk Public Safety Officer said yoga was “brainwashing,” and not a physical exercise. Once this news hit the Western media, city officials retracted the letter promising to discipline the clerks who sent it out, as if it was all a huge mistake. According to Russia Beyond the Headlines, yoga in Russia has increased ten-fold in the past 20 years, with one million currently practicing. Hopefully now they can breathe a little easier.
Read the full story at the Vocativ.