Interest in Aussie yoga injuries study stretches worldwide

Published:16 April 2018

TOP: A yoga pose promoted on the internet (courtesy Matt Madd via Flickr Creative Commons). Image Ā© Matt via BELOW: CQUni researcher Dr Betul Sekendiz.

A CQUniversity researcher's study suggesting that social media might be behind a new spate of yoga injuries has garnered worldwide interest and a potential audience of millions, through mainstream media as well as social media and YouTube.

Findings by Dr Betul Sekendiz have been picked up across the globe, from the TRT World News channel based in Istanbul to MSN Lifestyle's international sites, a Swiss lifestyle channel called Bluewin and dozens of other outlets.

"Analysis of Victorian emergency department statistics over a seven-year period shows an 80 per cent increase in yoga-related injuries," Dr Sekendiz says.

She says this trend can't be explained by the small increase in yoga participants and it's more likely that social media has become a factor.

"Influencers on social media are showcasing yoga based on the sex appeal of difficult poses, while wearing tight-fitting clothing and often in risky environments," Dr Sekendiz says.

"Due to this attention-grabbing promotion, we know that many people are attempting the same type of poses to upload to their own social media.

"Yoga is promoted as low-intensity and low-impact and as having benefits for spiritual development through physical training practices, so these extreme poses go against the original philosophy."