My Bikram Yoga Journey
Wednesday, March 11, 2015
For those of you who have never heard of it, Bikram Yoga is a series of 26 postures including 2 breathing exercises in a room heated to 105 degrees. The class runs 90 minutes to a standardized dialogue. Now let me get something straight, I hate to be hot. I despise it. The fact that I didn't run out of the room after 5 minutes is an accomplishment in and of itself. I can't even sit in a bathtub for more than 10 minutes. So if I can go and stay in the room, then I'm pretty sure anyone can. The first time you go in the room it is generally overwhelming. Your goal is to just stay in the room and breathe. The more you go the better you'll feel and eventually you will stop feeling hot. Most days I still have to sit down and just take a minute for myself, but every now and then I have a really good day and can do all of the postures.
My studio, Bikram Yoga Simsbury is such a warm and inviting studio. It really is like a community. Everybody is so friendly and encouraging. All of the instructors are great. They also have amazing smoothies, clothing, essential oils, and things of that nature. I've talked to people who have practiced at other studios and they always say this is the best studio they have practiced at.
The entire concept of doing the best you can with the body you have that day (because every day is different) and taking care of yourself was so foreign to me. Coming from a competitive dance background, this is basically the opposite of how you are taught to think. Being kind to yourself, listening to your body and letting go of your ego in the class have been an even bigger journey for me than how I'm improving in the postures. I am no longer upset at myself and frustrated when I have to stop and take a break. I am taking care of me and that's okay.
Even on days where I might feel a little sick in class, once I'm outside of class for a little while I feel wonderful. My body begins to crave a class when I have to skip a few days. I am always challenging myself, so I'm never bored despite always doing the same postures. I can't wait to see where this journey takes me next.
Image source: Yoga Design Lab