I was visiting my sister’s home when I heard her gasping in horror.
“What’s up,” I asked.
She couldn’t speak, instead pointed to her computer monitor. What I saw was one of the oddest things I’ve seen in a long time.
But, let’s back up a bit. First, I should mention I have a fair amount of experience with the metaphysical community. In fact, I’m not only a PhD holder in “Spiritual Counselling” from one of the largest metaphysical “universities” in the country, I worked with them for two whole years hosting their Minnesota office. I know a thing or two about yoga and its big-wigs. I also know that metaphysical people can do some mighty strange things.
I’ll have to share some of those stories someday.
But this story shocked even me. This is what we saw that fateful afternoon:
My first thought was that this had to be a hoax, so skeptic that I am, I checked out Snopes and found this.
Yes, the yoga baby video is real and really terrifying, at least to watch. But is it safe for baby?
If you haven’t seen it yet, the video, which comes out of Russia, shows a woman tossing, twisting and spinning a baby in midair. She never lets go of the child’s arm, but the images of a child being tossed around like that are pretty jarring to an American eye.
The baby yoga guru is Lena Fokina, a 50-year-old Russian who lives in Egypt teaching yoga, free-diving and “dynastic gymnastics” (read baby yoga).
Fokina said baby yoga helps children have more mobility, freedom and independence and has been practiced in Russia for three decades. “They are early readers, singers, talkers, swimmers. You haven’t seen anything like it anywhere!”
Aye carumba! People will truly believe anything, it seems. This is just one of those times when I can’t believe I have to say this but here I go: Doing things like this to your baby is likely dangerous.
(Hat tip to Gawker for the pic.)
So. How does Ms Fokina justify her actions? Here’s the description from this vid.)
Swinging Baby Yoga exercise has been devised by Lena Fokina, a midwife whose methods have divided opinion across the world. She teaches each day on the beach at Dahab’s Masbat Bay in Egypt where she meets pregnant women and parents with children of young children. Most of her followers are eastern European and mainly from Russia. Fokina says her methods are based on those of Igor Charkovski, a Russian midwife and a pioneer in water births. Each session begins with yoga followed by baby dipping in the sea. Mothers are instructed in how to take the infants into the sea. They’re taken underwater and forced up to the surface. Fokina claims this allows babies to experience the elements and develop senses naturally. She believes that too many people are afraid of exposing their babies to nature and the elements and that these exercises allow a better communication between parents and their babies. According to Fokina the natural elements help to develop a sixth sense, intuition.
There you have it. I’ve officially been rendered speechless. I simply hope those children are OK.