My 1st Bikram Yoga class (23rd January 2009)

Dvita had asked me to tag along to a hot yoga class at Bikram Yoga Wellington on Tory St this evening. I've always been meaning to check it out so when she asked, I had to say yes! Bikram or hot yoga is a series of yoga poses done in a heated room, promoting profuse sweating, which is said to rid the body of toxins. It also makes the body very warm, and supposedly therefore more flexible. I have to admit I'm a wee bit nervous about the class - I recalled reading or hearing that sometimes people pass out in the class due to the heat. Wouldn't want that to happen to me!

The class started at 6pm but we were there by 5.15pm because the Friday evening class is a Koha class i.e. payment by voluntary donation for charity, and it packs up very quickly (oh yeah, the students are less than an arms length away from each other). I had to hire a bath towel because Dvita didn't specifically tell me what size towel to bring and I brought along a small sports towel. You really need a bath towel to put on the yoga mat and trust me, you WILL want a towel.

It was a 90-minute long class and during the course of the class, I did contemplate giving up and just walking out (the woman in front of me wanted to do so but was very curtly told off by the instructor - ouch!). The heat made it rather difficult for me to concentrate on the yoga poses, feeling a little light-headed in some, and the profuse sweating just made it a tad challenging to have my hands grip to my ankles. I was dripping with sweat and walked out absolutely soaked through! Oh, and if you were thinking 'eww, sweating!', well, everyone in the room is sweating - you can see beads of sweat trickling down to the towel. Thoughts of stripping down to bare essential wear for the remaining of the class is likely to cross your mind.

I often wonder, is there such a thing a silent yoga class? I don't know why but I find it somewhat stressful or my peace disturbed when a yoga instructor goes on and on, rambling all the moves (which also happened in this class). Hmm...

Wow, even after a warm shower, I could still feel the heat from the class burning my cheeks. But I must say, it does feel kind of good, sweating it all out. Might give it another go and who knows, add it to my weekly exercise regime :) Thanks for asking me to come along, Dvita! Those of you who haven't tried Bikram yoga yet, put it down as challenge for 2009!


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