Yoga is not supposed to be about how you look. In fact, the purpose of this 5,000-year-old Indian practice is the very opposite: to combat the superficial with the spiritual and encourage mental transformation through movement.
But in recent years, it seems these intentions have fallen to the wayside.
Thanks to the advent of Instagram, millions of avid yogis around the world have taken to sharing daring and abstract poses online, accruing thousands of followers and launching careers as “yoga influencers” as a result. Search #yoga on the platform and you’ll find 75.5 million photos of people bending their limbs backwards, forwards and sideways in all sorts of Valencia-filtered locations. And celebrities are among them, with everyone from Britney Spears and Miranda Kerr to Miley Cyrus and Beyoncé demonstrating their finest yoga moves.
Some of the poses are harmless – a downward dog here, a lotus there –