Yesterday a brouhaha was begun when former Lululemon employee Elizabeth Licorish told reporters that her former employers routinely discriminated against larger customers. In other news, water is wet.
I mean come on. The store only stocks clothes up to size 10 or 12. And they label their size 12 as XL. Clearly this is a company who has never catered to a plus-sized clientele.
Licorish claims that while she worked at Lululemon, the company only stocked a few items in sizes 10 and 12. She also asserts that these lonely larger sizes were not displayed prominently in the front, folded neatly on shelves or hanging from display racks, but rather, were crumpled up in the back.
Which leads me to ask a question. How exactly is this different from nearly every other retailer on the planet? Aside from the few stores like Lane Bryant and Torrid and Christines that cater specifically to plus-sized customers, most stores have pitiful, tiny poorly managed sections for their larger clothing. Even if you look at the major, high-end department stores, the plus-sized section is much smaller, has much less inventory and is less well-staffed than virtually any other clothing department in the store. Given the fact that about half of American women are plus-sized, I have a hard time understanding the reason why plus-sized clothing gets less than 10 percent of the floor space devoted to clothing in the local neighborhood mall.
Lululemon is not so different than most clothing companies, in that they fail to see the amazing market afforded by plus-sized customers and they are letting their brand arrogance lead them into leaving millions of dollars on the table.
But they know this already.
So instead of yelling at Lululemon for improperly displaying the “ginormous” size-12 yoga pants retailing for over $100, I’m going to take this moment to remind the world that there are now some truly fabulous resources for budding plus-sized yogis out there.
On our Fit Fatties Forum we have the super amazing Abby Lentz moderating our Yoga group. Aside from being an awesome yoga teacher, Abby also has her Heavyweight Yoga DVD and an especially cool feature on her website called “Change the Image of Yoga” where she features lots of beautiful, smiling yogis who don’t look anything like the ads or the saleswomen you’ll find at Lululemon.
Another wonderful Yoga Teacher that I know and love is Anna Guest-Jelley. Anna is founder of Curvy Yoga and also offers certification for other teachers who are interested in learning the Curvy Yoga method of instruction. She also offers her world-famous 30 Days of Curvy Yoga program.
And if Lululemon pants fit neither your butt nor your budget, you might want to check out the yoga wear at Junonia.com. They have some lovely, high-quality pieces of yoga wear available up to a size 6x.
So may I make a suggestion? Rather than be upset that one hoity-toity “yoga wear” company doesn’t want to take your money, how about supporting one of these amazing businesses? Help them to help you and many, many others to spread the word that yoga is for every BODY.
The Fat Chick
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