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Hugger Mugger History

  • The First Sticky Yoga Mat: A History

    There was a time when yogis in America practiced on bare floors and bath towels. If you were lucky, your yoga class took place on a hardwood floor, one with a finish that had at least a modicum of friction. Reality was, most of us ended up sliding around on linoleum, wood, concrete or carpet. Standing poses and Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose) were an exercise in frustration. No matter how much we might have wanted to open our hearts, expand into the light, etc., we were always holding back, trying to keep from ending up in a...

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  • The Hugger Mugger Catalog: A History

    Back in 1986, when Sara Chambers founded Hugger Mugger Yoga Products, she couldn’t have predicted its future. From its humble beginnings of a single strap and pair of shorts, the company has cultivated a worldwide community. In order to build that community, Sara knew she had to get the word out. Back then, the flagship for any mail-order business was their catalog. But how to begin? Sara and I knew each other from public classes she attended and I assisted. At the time, my day job was as a darkroom technician for a photographer, Butch Adams. Sara enlisted me to...

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  • 30 Years of Yoga at Hugger Mugger

      The Original Hugger Mugger Shorts In early 1986 Iyengar teacher Mary Dunn taught a weekend workshop in Salt Lake City. Mary was the daughter of Mary Palmer, one of Iyengar’s very early American students. Iyengar was Dunn’s only yoga teacher throughout her life. As an Iyengar teacher, Mary needed to have props on site at the workshop. The workshop sponsors Cita Mason Riley and David Riley cobbled together what passed for props in those days—straps (neckties from a secondhand store) and “blankets” (samples of outdated carpet from a local carpet store). There were no yoga mats, blocks or bolsters...

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  • The Original Yoga Shorts: A Journey

    The Original Yoga Shorts A few items have lived in storage for much, much longer than two years, but they are not going anywhere, despite the fact that I don’t plan to wear them again. One such item is a pair of maroon-colored velour gym shorts I first saw more than 25 years ago. I remember it like it was yesterday:  A golden-haired, blue-eyed Yoga student of several years walked into a Monday night intermediate class wearing the maroon shorts. These were not just any old gym shorts, however. These shorts were designed for Yoga practice. Each leg was finished...

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