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Word of Mouth

Yoga: Use with Caution

Photo by asterix611, courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

When William Broad held his first yoga pose in 1970, his intention was to attain better health, both in mind and in body. Now a practitioner of more than four decades, he’s looking at yoga from another perspective, trying to mete out the benefits of yoga from widely held myths, and along the way, revealing a downside of yoga that’s placed him firmly at the center of a decidedly un-zen firestorm of controversy. Broad is a senior writer with the New York Times, and author of the new book, “The Science of Yoga.” In January, the Times excerpted a chapter of his book called “How Yoga Can Wreck your Body,” spurring a frenzy of online response from yoga defenders and detractors alike. Of course, that chapter is only part of a much broader book, in which Broad relies on research, interviews and peer-reviewed science to examine the myths and miracles of a practice that’s taken hold throughout our culture.

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