Yoga Studios Rebrand Amidst Bikram Yoga Controversy

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## Bikram Yoga Studios Grapple with Rebranding Amidst Founder’s Sexual Assault Allegations

### Introduction

Following the resurgence of sexual assault allegations against the founder of Bikram yoga, numerous yoga studio owners have opted to invest in rebranding to disassociate themselves from the embattled yogi.

### Bikram Yoga Scarsdale’s Decision

Bikram Yoga Scarsdale, a family-owned yoga studio in New York, has grappled with the decision of changing their name for over a year. In response to concerns raised by patrons, the studio will adopt the name “Sweat Central” and refer to Bikram classes as “original hot yoga.” Co-owner Nicole Pike emphasizes the desire to create a comfortable environment for patrons and ensure their funds do not support the accused yogi. The studio anticipates spending up to $20,000 on rebranding initiatives, which include new signage, merchandise, and website and social media updates.

### Separation from the Alleged Predator

Yoga studios across the United States have taken similar steps in response to the allegations. Owners recognize the positive benefits of the Bikram yoga sequence while seeking to disassociate the practice from the alleged predator and the culture of silence he fostered. Bikram Choudhury’s idolization as a healer has been tarnished by the emergence of assault allegations.

### Physical and Mental Health Benefits of Bikram Hot Yoga

Despite the controversy, research indicates that the Bikram yoga sequence, performed at high temperatures, provides numerous physical and mental health benefits. The American Council on Exercise highlights its effectiveness in reducing stress levels, improving endurance, and enhancing mental strength and mindfulness.

### The Impact of Netflix’s “Bikram: Yogi, Guru, Predator”

Netflix’s “Bikram: Yogi, Guru, Predator” documentary has brought renewed attention to the Bikram yoga controversy. Cleve Willis, owner of yoga studio Still Hot Yoga in Druid Hills, Georgia, anticipated the backlash and changed the name of his business in 2014. Willis maintains the term “Bikram yoga” on class schedules to avoid confusion among clients searching for specific classes.

### #MeToo Movement in the Yoga Community

The sexual assault allegations have sparked a #MeToo-like reckoning within the yoga community. An estimated 36 million Americans, predominantly women, practice yoga. Yoga instructors and students have spoken out against unwanted touching, particularly by instructors who provide hands-on adjustments without consent.

### Conclusion

The rebranding efforts of yoga studios reflect the shift in the yoga community away from cult-like followings and towards an environment that prioritizes the safety and well-being of practitioners. By disassociating themselves from the alleged predator, yoga studio owners aim to create a welcoming and ethical atmosphere while preserving the benefits of the Bikram yoga sequence.

### References

* [The Good Body: Yoga Statistics](

### HTML Markup



Yoga studio owners grapple with rebranding as Bikram yoga founder’s sexual assault allegations resurface.

Bikram Yoga Scarsdale’s Decision

The studio will rename itself “Sweat Central” and introduce “original hot yoga” classes.

Separation from the Alleged Predator

Yoga studios seek to distance themselves from Bikram Choudhury and his alleged misconduct.

Physical and Mental Health Benefits of Bikram Hot Yoga

  • Reduces stress levels
  • Improves endurance
  • Enhances mental strength and mindfulness

The Impact of Netflix’s “Bikram: Yogi, Guru, Predator”

The documentary has sparked renewed interest in the controversy and prompted yoga studios to reconsider their branding.

#MeToo Movement in the Yoga Community

Yoga instructors and students are speaking out against unwanted touching in classes.


Yoga studios prioritize safety and well-being by disassociating from the alleged predator and rebranding with a focus on ethical practice.


  • [The Good Body: Yoga Statistics](


### Attribution

Author: Emily Carter

Credit and Rights: OMG I Yoga

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