So after all these years of practicing yoga, I finally tried my first Bikram class! I was skeptical at first since I heard so many negative comments about it, but I wanted to experience it first hand and go with an open mind. To all Bikram teachers and practitioners out there, I salute you, because it was a class soooo different than what I was used to. I am not bashing the practice, but my beliefs and the beliefs of bikram yoga are complete opposites.
As I lay in the room of over 100F, my mind racing with anxiousness, I began to bring my awareness to my breath. Since the class was 90mins long, I had to brace myself for the poses to come and let my body take in the heat. Immediately this got interrupted and I was blinded by the bright lights. The instructor had the thickest accent, and was speaking so fast, I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. There was not a single moment of silence to soak up the poses and all I kept hearing was “push, push, push your body and lock, lock, lock your knees” –Two things you are NEVER supposed to do in any practice.
By the halfway mark, I was ready to leave. Doing 26 poses twice seems like an easy task, but the heat just became too overwhelming and I found myself repeatedly going into child’s pose or savasana (corpse pose). I give credit for those that lasted, because my ego got the best of me and I completely gave up.
Floor dripping with sweat and fingers all pruney, the class was finally over. On a positive note, I did feel really good afterwards. There is a reason why we do those poses, which are linked to many health benefits. Tons of people give credit to bikram yoga for helping them cure any pain or suffering they may have. So keep at it if it helps, but branch out and do a downward dog!
photo source: http://vegangrrlseattle.blogspot.com/