Editor's blog: Eternal youth with Revita-Yoga?

Monday 16 April, 2007

Sometimes, new forms of yoga seem to emerge faster than snails in a garden after a rainy day. Many can be dismissed as faddish, headline-grabbing, and little more than a slightly different twist on an established form. Enter 'Revita-Yoga' - a series of facial exercises marketed as a natural alternative to a face-lift.


Apparently, classes teaching so-called Revita-Yoga are springing up across America, with participants lured by the prospect of staving off crow's feet by opening the eyes wide; or diving into downward dog to add colour to the complexion (erm - but unless you stay in downward dog indefinitely, how on earth will that work?!).

The Kapiolani Health Centre in Honolulu, Hawaii, runs six two-hour sessions designed to create "balanced facial symmetry while revitalizing and rejuvenating skin".

Meanwhile, frowns and jowls are under attack at the Lake Austin Spa Resort in Texas, where guests are led through 23 facial movements meant to release tension, lift droopy mouth corners and iron forehead wrinkles.

Doctors, it would seem are sceptical (surprise, surprise!) about whether it actually works; an opinion presumably not shared by the author of a new book, The Yoga Facelift, by Marie Veronizue Nadeau, due out in May.

That's to be followed (how quickly the publishing industry has jumped on the bandwagon!) hot-on-the heels by The Yoga Face, due out this August.

The author, Hagen, says: "People want to be in control of their appearance rather than relegating it to an authority.

"I'm teaching my students to consciously release muscles rather than paralyzing them, which is what Botox does."

It would be difficult to see how these exercises (surely it's stretching the definition to call it "yoga"?) translate to a permanent improvement in how somebody looks.

But I guess there's a powerful argument to say that anything that helps to take away the incentive to go under the surgeon's knife, and anything that gives control back to individuals (and takes it away from the multi-million pound plastic surgery industry) should be welcomed.

I'm just not sure it should be called yoga.

Lucia Cockcroft, editor







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