Interested in trying hot yoga? After just 10 90-minute sessions of yoga in a 105-degree room, Michelle Ryan has already learned some big lessons.
I didn’t know much about yoga, much less Bikram yoga until a friend mentioned it to me several months ago. When a discount introductory deal came along, I jumped at the chance to try it.
Then, of course, I procrastinated until almost the last minute of the promotion before I forced myself to try it. I say “forced” because what kind of person willingly goes to practice yoga of any kind for 90 minutes in a room that is 105 degrees?
Now, after completing 10 sessions at Bikram Yoga Savannah, I am that kind of person–one who doesn’t just willingly go three days a week, but who also actually looks forward to it. And after such a short time, I’m about as close to being a yoga master as I am to being a Jedi master, but here’s what I’m learning.
- There’s so much to learn. Bikram yoga is one of those things like judo that can take years to master–if you ever do. Good thing every class is the same, but don’t think I’m not being challenged every time. Did I mention it’s 105 degrees in there?
- Patience, young grasshopper. Whether a victim of my ultra-perfectionist ways or the gotta-have-it-now society, I’m clashing with No. 1 on this list. Learning to lighten up doesn’t mean I’m giving up, just trying to enjoy the journey–in and out of the yoga studio.
- How to seek balance. Lately, I’ve really tried to work on developing better focus and concentration in class, and I think that’s translating to my ability to balance work and life demands better. Plus, Bikram yoga is helping to improve my physical ability to balance in ways no 4-inch heels can.
- Ah, relaxation. Whether it’s getting a more restful night’s sleep–or let’s be honest, crashing in the early afternoon from exhaustion after an intense session–I’m generally feeling more energized in the morning and motivated throughout the day thanks to all those quality zzz’s I’m catching.
- A sense of accomplishment. Some days it isn’t easy to get up and go to class, and there have certainly been times I thought about, gasp, skipping. But I haven’t. Even if I didn’t do every pose perfectly–or bowed out of one or two because the heat got to me–I still managed to do something good for myself. Again, did I mention it’s 105 degrees in there?