Yogi’s Hair

You already know that I am more than a bit interested in hair and its significance in art, mythology and culture. I’m also self-interested when it comes to hair: my own requires a battery of anti-frizz curl creams, special combs and turbo-conditioning agents to look presentable not just in my day-to-day life, but in my yoga practice as well. Unlike Shiva, I can’t salute the sun with blissfully wild dreads! My hair needs to be confined to a ponytail or braids, or harnessed with a barrette. You never know when you’re going to transition from urdhva dhanurasana into dwi pada, or need a smooth base at the back of your head for sarvangasana.

I love this video (and the hilarious accompanying text) from super sympa Paris-based stylist Fred. One of the things he says is that your hairstyle ought to correlate to whatever activity you’re engaged in. What you do with your hair when you’re swimming is totally different from what you do when you’re playing badminton. Pretty obvious, right? After all, dancers have the chignon, hockey players have the mullet, Sumo wrestlers the chonmage.

And yogis? According to Fred, yogis’ coiffures should be minimalist because what they look like on the outside is not as important as what they’re contemplating on the inside (plus, “you have to be careful where you secure the hair elastic, otherwise your ponytail lobotomizes you, and when your legs are in the air, that’s not cool.” I swear this is ten times funnier in French.)

What are your go-to hairdos for yoga? In my yoga bag, I pack barrettes, pins, and elastics for follicular emergencies. A lot of yoga students -- women and men -- use headbands like these, and still more knot a bandanna on their heads, Baron Baptiste style. It would be fun to try something more elaborate (this site has some sweet tutorials) but for the most part, I keep it simple and I try not to fuss too much during class. Do any of you change your hairstyle as Anne demonstrates in the video?

By the way, if you’re interested in having Fred style your hair, get in touch with him here. To connect with Anne about her yoga classes in Paris, check her out on Facebook.

—Martine