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Less Yoga = More Stress

For this project, I wanted to stay along the lines of the theme of basically everything I've been working on this semester and make the argument that yoga relieves stress levels. I wanted to take the most and least stressed cities in the US and look at how large their yoga community was compared to how stressed the city is. I decided to do this by creating a ratio of the population of the city divided by the number of yoga studios in that city. This ratio would determine how many people there are per yoga studio.

The outline of the US was the best graphic to base this data around because it gave a geographical location for the cities and (somewhat unintentionally) created a comparison of the east and west coasts. This use of proximity creates more information than I had even set out to prove. These include, how in some places the red and green dots cluster together, showing those regions are more or less stressed in general and the east coast has most of the red dots while the west coast has most of the green dots, showing that stress may be geographically related.

First off in making the graph, I used contrast to compare the most and least stressed cities by making the most stressed cities red dots and the least stressed cities green dots. Red for the most stressed cities draws more attention to the red dots, which was my intention considering I'm making the argument that less yoga equals more stress.

I use the size of the dots to show the ratio of population by number of yoga studios to create repetition so that the comparison is easily visual. The circle size corresponds so that the less amount of yoga in the city, the bigger the dot gets. I had a hard time deciding whether I should do it this way or the opposite (less people doing yoga has a smaller dot) because it seems a little counter-intuitive to the point I'm trying to make. By making the title "Less Yoga = More Stress" I was able to clear up some of that confusion. The two factors draw attention to those two points mentioned in the title, with the bigger the circle indicating less yoga and the red, more noticeable dots indicating more stress.

By using the same size dots whether it was a most or least stressed city, I was able to create a connection despite the contrast from the dot color. There is a wide spectrum of dot sizes on both sides so that there are the same size dots, or the same ratio of people per yoga studio, but there is also overwhelmingly larger and more of the largest size dots for the most stressed cities and vice versa.

Sources:
http://www.portfolio.com/resources/Portfolio-2010-Metro-Area-Stress-Rank...
http://www.citypopulation.de/USA-Cities.html
http://yellowpages.com

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