A celebrity guru famous for popularizing “hot yoga” has settled a suit against a former student who stole the guru’s signature sequence of ancient yoga poses.
You’ve heard of Bikram yoga, where they crank up the heat to 105.
Well it’s named for Bikram Choudgury, who went global with a slick business model based on a copyrighted 26-asana (pose) sequence — the foundation of his Bikram’s Beginning Yoga Class.
Bikram recently sued Greg Gumucio for using the same sequence at his Yoga to the People studios.
Gumucio told Nightline, which is covering the saga in-depth, that it’s ludicrous to copyright an ancient art:
Here you have this traditional knowledge that’s been around for 5,000 years and there was kind of a run on the bank. It’s kind of like if Arnold Schwarzenegger said I’m going to do five bench presses, six curls, seven squats, call it ‘Arnold’s Work’ and nobody can show that or teach that without my permission. That’s crazy to me.
But now Gumucio has bent to Bikram’s demands and agreed to no longer teach the Bikram sequence. The settlement was made public today.
Here’s the lawsuit:
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