When I stepped into the Bikram yoga room, my heart immediately began to flutter. I thought to myself, "How am I going to make through this class? I can't do it!" As a person who suffers nearly every summer from heat exhaustion, I knew it would be a magnificent feat for me to finish the “hot yoga” class. However, I toughed it out and thought to myself, "I paid for this class. This will be a great learning experience."
I opened my green leaf-decorated yoga mat down on the carpet floor, spread a beach towel over my mat, and rested on my back with my eyes closed until class started. My heart continued to beat quickly, but once my friend Amanda arrived (she gave me moral support) I became more relaxed.
The instructor began speaking and I stood up, along with the rest of the class, and walked to the top of my mat. We started with simple breathing exercises. Inhaling and exhaling. We kept our hands clasped below our chins, and we lifted our elbows up to the sky as we inhaled. We exhaled with our mouths open, brought our chins slowly up toward the sky, and brought our elbows slowly together simultaneously.
After the breathing exercise we proceeded to a series of poses. The poses we did were normal yoga postures, executed the same way as any other form of yoga, but they were much more difficult given the extreme heat. My body was sweating profusely, and we only stopped two times for a drink of water. Although I was sweating, becoming weak, and was exhausted, the feeling that the Bikram session gave me was amazing.
It was amazing how much flexibility I gained throughout the class. I have never sweat that much before, but the cleansing feeling Bikram gave me was rewarding. I was challenged to keep going, and I was surprised that my body was able to handle the heat. Because of my immense concentration on the poses, I soon forgot how warm I was, and I simply focused on the task at hand: breathing and posture.
An hour and a half later we concluded our class with another breathing exercise. Thankfully, I made it through the class, and I felt amazing afterward. Needless to say, I purchased an unlimited month of yoga for less than $40.00, and I am continuing my practice!
(Picture Courtesy of Third Coast Digest)
If you are in the Milwaukee area and are interested in the studio I now attend, click HERE!
(Picture Courtesy of WISN)
For more information on Bikram yoga, click HERE!