Embarrassment is a part of life, but something about having an embarrassing thing happen during yoga class just makes it that much worse.
Maybe it’s because everyone is so “in the zone,” or maybe it’s because sometimes yoga projects this image of happy, healthy, totally-in-control, unflappable people. Who knows?
My point is, really, that embarrassing things do happen during yoga class. And that’s ok. It happens to the best of us. Yes, even the teacher who always seems on point.
Here are some embarrassing things that can happen during yoga class, and why they’re ok:
Let’s get the big one out of the way first. It happens to everyone. EVERYONE. I promise.
Sometimes they can be more…noticeable…than at other times, but it’s all good. Don’t sweat this one at all. Why? Because yoga moves a lot of things around. Energy, breath, bodily functions, etc. All it means when you fart in a yoga class is that you’re moving stuff around in your body, and that your digestive system is in good working order.
2. Falling…On Someone
This has definitely happened to me, and I’m sure it’s happened to more than one of you.
You’re trying that inversion for the first time, or maybe you’re just a bit unbalanced in Extended Side Angle that day, and you fall to the side. Right into your neighbor. With any luck, this doesn’t cause a domino effect.
Use this one as a learning experience. If you fell out of headstand (safely, hopefully!) that you weren’t quite ready for, this can help you check your ego. It did for me. If you fell out of more “basic” asana, maybe you’ll realize that you need to engage your core more the next time.
Whatever the case, dust yourself off and give it another go. The most embarrassing thing is to stop trying.
3. Sweating In All Possible Ways
Whether in Bikram yoga or that super sweaty Vinyasa Flow class you love so much, sweat happens. No matter how cute you look going into class, there’s a high likelihood that you might come out looking like a drowned rat.
Sweat patterns under your armpits, your butt, wherever it happens to be, sometimes you just sweat like you’re hanging out under a faucet for an hour and a half.
This one should be the absolute least of your worries. Your body is functioning just as it should by trying to keep you cool, and I promise, absolutely no one is noticing. If you’re sweating a lot, the chances are exceedingly high that someone else is sweating just as much.
Rock that sweaty outfit when you leave class! It’s a badge of honor of, “oh yeah, I did something good for myself today.”
4. Maybe You Shouldn’t Have Eaten That Big Meal Right Before…
This one has also happened to me. I wanted to go to class really badly, but my body was screaming out for food. I thought I would be much better off not fainting in class, so I ate a relatively large meal right before class.
About a quarter of the way through, after twisting to the right and the left, and while in Downward Dog, I got a very particular rumbly in my tumbly, and not the good kind.
The best thing to do is find the closest bathroom and wait til it passes. Maybe you’ll feel better when it’s out rather than in.
We can’t really time our upchucks when they happen, but you can still use it as a learning experience. Maybe go for a lighter meal beforehand, or don’t go so full-on until your body has had some time to digest.
Whatever happens though, you’re still not the first one to quickly leave the room in case of emergency. And your day can really only get better from there.
5. Bits Popping Out
Sometimes your bits just don’t stay where they should. You might be taking off an extra shirt and something rides up a little too high, or maybe you miscalculated just how short your shorts were. Once in a while a bit likes to go AWOL for a second or two, and you need to find a way to discreetly put it back in its place.
In the grand scheme of things, who cares? We’ve all got bits, and they can be pretty hard to manage sometimes. If you accidentally flash someone, the best thing to do is laugh it off. No one’s the worse for wear, after all.
Yoga’s all about the journey, isn’t it? We can use almost any experience on the mat as a chance to learn and grow. Even the one’s we’d rather forget.
Have you had any embarrassing experiences in yoga class? What did you learn from them? Share with us (if you dare!) in the comments below!