On December 11th, 2014, the UN General Assembly declared June 21st to be the International Day of Yoga. The declaration was a result of a call by India’s Prime Minister, Narendra Modi to make June 21st the International Day of Yoga. To the Assembly, Mr. Modi stated: “Yoga is an invaluable gift of India’s ancient tradition . It embodies unity of mind and body; thought and action; restraint and fulfillment; harmony between man and nature; a holistic approach to health and well-being. It is not about exercise but to discover the sense of oneness with yourself, the world and the nature. ”
June 21st, 2015 was the first official International Day of Yoga. Over 175 nations supported and sponsored the event. Celebrations included large scale community classes made available throughout many countries including the U.S., India, and Kenya. Making yoga available to the masses is one of the main goals of International Yoga Day. While many countries embrace yoga, access can be an issue. By providing free community classes, this day allows everyone to experience the magic of yoga. In 2016, the celebrations continued. Yoga studios around the world offered free classes the entire day as well as large scale community classes.
Let us hope this tradition continues to grow each year, allowing yoga to touch and heal the world around us. Embrace and celebrate the yogi within and remember to always respect where you are at. I look forward to celebrating each year and sharing yoga with everyone in my community.