Adventures in Yoga Teaching – I’m Too Funky for Me


Quiet as it’s kept, yoga clothes can get pretty stinky.

A few weeks ago someone asked me why I hadn’t told her? Huh?

About the funky clothes….

And she wasn’t referring to dope gear.

So, I thought I should talk about yoga’s dirty secret- funk, and I ain’t talkin’ about a Prince song.

What’s a yogini to do?

Between teaching, taking hot classes and vinyasa classes almost daily the laundry in the Mays household is insane.

I’m a firm believer in not skimping on certain items. There are cases when quality is worth the cost. But did this extend to detergent?

Detergent is expensive- I mean really expensive. I figured, let’s try cheaper detergent. C’mon, is there really a difference?

Well, I used a cheap brand for awhile because it had Oxy and baking soda. How could one go wrong with such a combination?

The quick and dirty is cheap laundry soap doesn’t work well.

There’s nothing worse that taking class and realizing 30 minutes into it your clothes are stinky with another 60 minutes left.

A Story:

Once, I found myself sniffing my favorite black tank while in padahastasana.

sniff. sniff. sniff.

Oh no! Funk! I should have just whipped it off and practiced in my sports bra- but I already had on those super short shorts. I’m not quite ready to be that naked in class (But give me a few weeks, that may change).

There I was feeling insecure. I was willing the teacher to stay away on the other side of the room.

‘No adjustments, please!’, I pleaded silently hoping she wouldn’t come over.

But I don’t have the kind of luck that you have.

It happened while I was in triangle. The teacher saunters over.

Oh no!!!

But it was too late. I get the adjustment.

I rationalized that between my awesome deodorant and citron de vigne by fresh I was okay.

My first stop after class was to the grocery store. I lugged home the giant sized Tide Sport. No way was I going through that kind of drama again.



I won’t let you get funked up.

Funk that. Here are a few things that worked for me.



  • 100% cotton t-shirts absorb sweat and odor like a sponge. These are definitely a no-no in a hot room. Well, that’s not exactly true. Feel free to wear them- but know you’ll have to toss them every three months (if you practice more than 3x weekly). I like cotton t-shirts and even leggings that have a bit of cotton for vinyasa, they keep me warm and comfy. The downside is the stink factor- so I go through quite a bit.
  • Fabrics that wick away sweat are definitely the way to go if you are heat junkie.
  • Let it all hang out. I don’t put most of my yoga clothes in the dryer. It makes a big difference both in prolonging the life of the clothes and keeping the clothes smelling fresh!
  • Wash or rinse right after class or as soon as you get home. Let clothes sit is a no-no.
  • Add plain white vinegar or baking soda or Oxy to the wash. It helps with odor.
  • I keep threatening to make my own laundry detergent. But I won’t so I won’t keep up the charade (short a sound). But if you do, awesome. Then send me some. Just kidding. No really send me some. Nah, I’m kidding. Sorta.

The only funk that gets me now is the funk that makes me get down!!! (That was really corny- but I’m leaving it.)

This is yoga. And it can get dirty. (No, not that way. Family show)

Namaste y’all.

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