What I Learned Doing Yoga in Times Square

On June 21, I joined thousands of others on a pilgrimage to Times Square. We weren’t there to shop, see a Broadway show, or take pictures in all the touristy sites. We were there to do yoga.

Yoga in Times Square sounds like a disastrous idea. But June 21st was National Day of Yoga. So, just as they do every year, Times Square blocked off an area in the middle of all the big flashing screens, skyscrapers, Broadway lights, and tourists taking pictures. And we just did yoga.

Luckily, the oppressive NYC summer heat hadn’t kicked in yet (at least not for the early afternoon yoga class I participated in). So it was a calming, refreshing experience to do yoga in Times Square.

(Plus, everyone who participated got a free yoga mat, and some other free stuff too. So what’s not to love?)

Source: Flickr

Lying on my back in shavasana (also known as corpse pose, or the final yoga pose where you just chill and maybe fall asleep), I looked up at the patch of blue sky between the tops of several skyscrapers and thought that most people probably don’t get the chance to lay on their back in the middle of Times Square. Of course, I wouldn’t suggest it if you don’t have a yoga mat under you. I’m sure that sidewalk is pretty dirty. And if the area wasn’t blocked off, you’d get stepped on by about 50,000 people. But in this case, it was very nice.

So what’s the lesson here?

It’s not that you should go out and do yoga in the middle of the highway. I don’t want this article to cause any deaths, so please don’t do that.

However, I do think there’s a lesson about being mindful and finding peace no matter where you are. All you need is the right mindset, and you can achieve calm no matter the circumstances. Even bending over backwards in Times Square with a bunch of tourists staring at you (yes, some of them took pictures). It’s all in your attitude.