Finnish yoga on tour in Japan


Finnish yoga on tour in Japan

Japanese sauna goers doing yoga with Finnish yoga videos? Sounds mad, but it's true. YogaMe, a Finnish startup, went on a road trip to Japanese spas, launching their latest videos and giving yoga workshops. Lasting nearly two weeks, this one of a kind road trip visited several major cities, Tokyo and Osaka among others. Jenny Lauronen, Managing Director of YogaMe and yoga teacher, told us the latest news from the road.

Jenny, how did YogaMe end up on the road in Japan?

Metos Inc, the biggest builder of saunas in Japan, wanted to bring calming and relaxing elements into the Japanese sauna culture. A couple of years ago they heard about us from Arctinar, a Finnish importer of sauna and spa products with 30 years of background from the local market. The first spa videos led to others, and finally, to cooperation with Japanese spas and this road trip.


What have you guys been doing there so far?

We gave our first YogaMe workshops for spa guests in Nagoya on Monday 16 March. There were nearly 60 beginning yogis who wanted to know more about using short breaks of yoga in their everyday lives. Most of them weren’t familiar with YogaMe videos yet.

People were extremely interested in breathing techniques – and flexible compared to us Finns! It seems that spa culture here is associated with various massages and stretching rather than yoga.

The following day in Nagano was the spa owner’s turn. In our morning yoga session there were owners from several spas cooperating with Arctinar. Our hosts Mr Kim Heonsok, owner of Yokohama’s Sky Spa, and Mr Yoneda, owner of Welbe Spa, are both devoted fans of Finland.

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In my spare time I have enjoyed the mountains, the hot springs – and the sushi, of course. I’m looking forward to sakura, cherry tree blossoming, which is due soon!


What next?

Besides spas, YogaMe will visit yoga schools and potential distributors in Tokyo and Kyoto, for example. I can’t wait meeting all the inspiring people and learning more about integrating yoga in people’s everyday lives no matter where they come from.

What’s YogaMe’s mission?

YogaMe was born in 2012 based on my desire to make yoga available for everyone. YogaMe has been strongly influenced by the pioneering work of Yoga School Pune specializing in advancing the wellbeing of people at work through Iyengar yoga.

When designing the exercises, we kept our goal in mind: there should be nothing preventing people from doing yoga.

YogaMe is meant for short, refreshing breaks during the day. It offers easy-to-follow videos, which you can do in about 5 to 10 minutes using your phone, tablet or computer. You can also tailor the sequences depending on what you want, whether it’s relaxation or aid for back pain, or something else.

YogaMe on Tour in Japan 16 March – 25 March:

16 March Nagoya, 17 March Nagano, 19 March Yokohama, 20 March Tokyo, 22 March Osaka, 23 March Kyoto

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