Thursday, July 22, 2010
My first experience of Bikram Yoga
When a friend invited me to try a Bikram Yoga class last Saturday, I have to admit I was really nervous. For those of you who don’t know anything about Bikram Yoga it is basically a 90-minute yoga class which takes place in a room heated continuously to 40 degrees.
As someone who hides inside on the couch with the aircon full blast when the temperature hits 35, it was a big mental challenge. I have to admit there were times I thought I was going to die, where I had to fight the overwhelming urge to run screaming from the room in to the now welcoming winter air, but I persevered.
So what was it like? It was hot. It was very very hot. I don’t sweat when I exercise, but I think their estimates that you lose around 1.5 litres per class is about right. I actually had sweat drip of my forehead mid-pose (sorry maybe too much sharing). Not to mention the fact I spent a good portion of the day in the bathroom after attempting to drink the three litres of water recommended before undertaking a class (definitely too much sharing).
After what seemed like hours, but was most likely only 30 minutes, I started feeling light headed and had to sit out for a few poses. I actually think my decision to sit out for five was a welcome one to others as several people followed by lead. I struggled to get back to my feet as I felt I was light-headed but soon the class moved to poses that were mainly in a seated or lying down position and this helped get me back in the game.
I found a lot of the poses very difficult to achieve, but the way the class was run everyone was encouraged to try as best they could and do what they could. I found that really positive and I didn’t feel anyone was pushed beyond their own abilities.
So did I enjoy it? I have to say no, that while I was doing it I didn’t enjoy it but I did find the benefits noticeable. I was able to stretch far further than I could normally and I felt I had a challenging workout – both physically and mentally. I have never been a sweaty person, but I have to confess it was pouring off me within minutes (By the way I chose a picture of what I think everyone looks like after the class instead of a glam yoga pic).
So would I do it again? Tentatively I am saying yes, I think I will give it another go this weekend. Although I found the class a mental challenge, I had the best nights sleep of my life afterwards and I have found myself feeling calmer and more relaxed since. These are very good things for me.
I will keep you posted of the experiences after class two. They say it gets easier each time, so keep your fingers crossed for me!
Share your experiences with Bikram Yoga Perth. Did you love it or hate it or like me are you somewhere on the fence?