Anyway

This weeks blog – guest author, Mother Theresa

ANYWAY
Mother Theresa

”People are unreasonable, illogical and self-centered.
Love them anyway!
If you do good, people will accuse you
of selfish, ulterior motives.
Do good anyway!
If you are successful, you will win
false friends and enemies.
Succeed anyway!
The good you do will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway!
Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway!
What you spend years building may be
destroyed overnight.
Build anyway!
People really need help
but may attack you if you help them.
Help them anyway!
Give the world the best you have, and it will never be enough.

Give your best anyway!

In the final analysis, it is between you and God.

It was never between you and them anyway.”

Are you struggling to find time to do your yoga?

Are you struggling to find time to do your yoga?

We are all so busy now a days that even doing our yoga can just feel stressful! I totally agree! And being stressed to do yoga really defeats the purpose. However, the amazing thing about yoga is that if you do make the time, the other parts of your life will run smoother and feel less overwhelming. So, it’s worth it, even 10 minutes a day will help, trust me!

But, where to start?

The first question you need to ask yourself is; do you truly want to do this? From the heart! Because if you do anything half-heartedly, it will fizzle out. If you do truly know this is what you want to do, then you will find a way. Otherwise you will find dozens of excuses not to do the yoga practice. There is always a good reason not to do it. I’ve heard them all – many from my own head. I don’t feel good, I’m tired, I’ll start tomorrow, I have to just make this one phone call or email, I need to shop for….

So, take a moment, close your eyes, relax, take your time and ask yourself, from the heart, “do I really want to make this time for myself, to care for my body and mind, is it important to me?” If you say yes, then tell yourself “ok, I will do it, I’m able to guide my life, I’m not at the mercy of my circumstances, I can make it happen!”

From here, it is a matter of being realistic, organized and disciplined. For example, at the start of the week, schedule in your classes to your calendar. Make it a non-negotiable that you will go to the 9:30am class Tuesday , Thursday and Friday, and you’ll do your grocery shopping, laundry, and catch ups with friends after that time. Even better, why not invite your friend to do class with you and grab a coffee after?. Do your banking on Mondays, volunteer at the school tuckshop on Wednesday mornings, have that dinner date on Friday night, and you’ll catch the sport matches Saturday morning.  Decide on the number of classes you want to do per week, and when it realistically will work for you – nights, mornings, or early mornings (we think early mornings are the best as it gets it done before 7:30am! You just have to commit to getting up earlier in the day).

Organising yourself at the start of the week helps to give you structure, rhythm and clarity. It helps in your decision making and to get stuff done! On the nights before your yoga class, pre-prepare your bag – put your yoga clothes, towel, mat and water bottle inside, so in the morning, you’re ready to go without any excuse or delays.

Want more tips on how to commit to your yoga class? Ask any of our teachers at the studio! They are here to support you.

Namaste x

Michael stays smoke-free and mentally calm through Bikram yoga

“I started Bikram yoga last January because wanted to lose 10 kilos of sexiness and to make sure I didn’t start smoking again. I still haven’t smoked yet and I owe that to Bikram yoga for sure. In 20 years I’ve never gone this long without smoking. Being able to breathe and heal and be good to myself physically and emotionally through practice has been better than smoking ever was.

The greatest benefit I’ve gotten from Bikram yoga is how it quiets the crazy inside me. Bikram calms my mind unlike anything else. Amongst the sweat and poses and savasanas, the jagged edges of my thoughts become smoothed and rounded, feelings become clarified, and the voice inside me becomes kinder and gentler. Bikram is like a sweatier version of Zanax.

I love how no two classes are the same, how a pose one day can vastly differ the very next in feel or fluidness, in difficulty or ease. I love when a breakthrough happens with a pose. It’s the sensation of falling or moving through water, as if the pose is happening to you. You find a new ceiling and a new you.

I love how if I miss class, my whole body feels it, misses it. It’s like driving and slamming on breaks. My body is at rest but feels like it’s still in motion, longs to continue the forward momentum from the previous day.

I love every teacher that has instructed me, corrected me, and encouraged me. More times than not, it has been their encouragement that has kept me going.

I love the sense of community you share with a group of otherwise strangers. It’s the feeling of having survived a great storm, some indescribable test and done it together in one collective spirit, while in your undies.”


I used to think Yoga was a joke until this one moment

“Take a deep six count breath in… and exhale it out. Pranayama deep breathing…”  

“Uh, pranayama what?”  I was in my very first yoga class and couldn’t help but think: This is ridiculous. Did this yoga instructor just randomly make up a fancy-sounding word to describe the simple concept of breathing? *eye roll* Not only was I sweating profusely, suddenly swimming in a puddle of perspiration on my mat, but I also felt like I was stuck in an eleventh-grade foreign language class. Still trying to wrap my head around pranayama-this and trikonasana-that, I came to the defeated conclusion that this was not my jam. I just had to make it through this one class without drowning in my own bodily fluids and pretend to understand the gibberish meant to guide the wacky practice.  

I didn’t get into yoga because I was “broken” or going through a breakup or even seeking spiritual growth. I simply wanted a supplement to my already-involved training regimen. I perceived yoga to be physically challenging yet a more gentle workout for rest days… and that’s about it. 

I spent the first two years focusing on my physical practice. I didn’t have any interest in “feeling” or being compassionate, loving, and kind to myself. My main objective was to get a recovery workout in on the days I didn’t have functional strength training, and to keep my body supple. Every time an instructor would preach about vulnerability and the idea that “you can only love others as much as you love yourself,” I would cringe. Rather than embrace all of the tools that would contribute to my growth and emotional freedom, I resisted them and became increasingly frustrated with what I considered to be absolute bulls#*t. To be honest, I just couldn’t comprehend why every single instructor felt the need to create an emotional upheaval when I was just there to get in a good workout.

Despite my journey not following the common trend of turning to yoga post breakup, two years into my practice, I found myself going through the worst breakup of my life: my divorce.

All of a sudden, the emotional wall I built came crumbling down. I felt like everything the instructor was saying resonated with what I was experiencing in my personal life. The emotions came on full force, and my mat was soaked with a mixture of sweat and tears after every practice. I felt a loss of control and power I didn’t experience in my other workouts, as I was forced to deal with the hurt, sadness, anger, and regret. My formerly-jaded self might have scoffed, but this new, vulnerable version of me felt a shift. 

The exact moment it happened was in trikonasana during a grueling practice. I heard the instructor say, “Your access to power is through your breath. Follow it, feel it, hear it, be with it.”

As much as I look forward to the hip-opening poses, those are also the ones that are most sensational and regarded as the area in our body where we hold on to our emotions. With the discomfort intensifying, I decided to take the advice that changed everything for me: I started to breathe. I counted my breath. I visualized my breath. I listened to my breath. I just breathed.

It wasn’t that my breath magically made everything better—not even close—but what it did do was make the discomfort manageable.

It wasn’t that my breath magically made everything better—not even close—but what it did do was make the discomfort manageable. It allowed me to stay with the sensations, recognizing that I was in full control of how I chose to respond. In that moment, my breath—this simple, basic thing that we all have access to—became my most useful and powerful tool. Breathing reminded me that all emotions, good and bad, are temporary.

Learning to breathe through discomfort, be it physical or emotional, allowed me to create space for healing and vulnerability. It made me responsive rather than reactive, and it gave me the ability to recognize that I always have a choice. As the saying goes, the only way out is through. Through yoga, I realized I can either choose to avoid uncomfortable sensation and suffer, or I can breathe my way through it, trusting that it will pass in due time.

When I think back to that very first yoga class, I was not only completely confused by pranayama breathing, but I was also annoyed by the loud, obnoxious sound. It’s kind of funny now that what I once resisted is now my sacred tool of survival. It grounds me, soothes me, nurtures me, and allows me to create space to feel and to let go. It’s helped me find myself and is the most powerful component of my yoga practice. It reminds me not to be so quick to judge new experiences, new people, even myself. It reminds me that there is no challenge or difficulty that you cannot overcome—one breath at a time.  

12 New Year’s Resolutions You Should Make Even Though They Seem Totally Cliche

1. Exercise (/do Bikram Yoga) every day no matter what

What You Actually Do: Have a week or two where you spend an hour and a half exercising every day, then remember why you didn’t exercise before — you have no time! And pain!

What You Should Do: Put aside some time three or four days of the week to exercise. Start small and work your way up as you learn to manage your time.

2. Eat healthy and clean all the time

What You Actually Do: Spend a week or so eating the healthiest foods ever, effectively feeling like your depriving yourself of all the good stuff, then get stressed and binge on potato chips and ice cream. You then think, you messed everything up, and figure you might as well wait until next month to start over.
What You Should Do: Focus on one thing at a time. Start with portion control — make your meals smaller, and then start to cut out sugar when you don’t need it. Substitute healthier alternatives for unhealthy choices (kale chips instead of potato chips) but don’t make your life revolve around them. Let yourself indulge once in a while, just do your best to keep to portion control.

3. Stop procrastinating and get things done

What You Actually Do: Realize you procrastinated before because things are hard, and rationalize that it’s just part of your personality or you just don’t have enough time.

What You Should Do: Make a set schedule for when you have to get things done so that you’re more organized and have something to follow. Promise yourself a treat when you’re done to motivate yourself – 30 minutes watching your favourite series without nagging thoughts of what you should be doing (because you’ve already done it!) is pure bliss.

4. Wake up earlier to get to work or class a few minutes early or on time

What You Actually Do: Manage to get up an hour early the first three days and then remember why you love the snooze button — your bed is amazing.

What You Should Do: Spend one week waking up five minutes earlier than normal. The next week, wake up 10 minutes earlier. The next week wake up 15 minutes earlier, and so on until you reach the time you want. You can even spend two weeks doing each time interval if you’d like. Just take it slow!

5. Save a lot of money, and stop spending all of it on useless clothes and accessories

What You Actually Do: Put aside your first few paychecks and stop shopping completely, then find one sweater you like and go crazy, and realize you just spent EVERYTHING.

What You Should Do: Take a long, hard look at your finances, and think about what is reasonable for you to put away each week. Make sure you leave yourself enough money for food, occasionally going out, bills, and a little extra spending cash. Decide what is right for you: for some people it’s $5, for others it may be $20. Whatever the amount is, put it away in a box or jar at the end of each week. Putting away small amounts of money is much less daunting than taking $500 out of your paycheck.

6. Give up your worst habit for good

What You Actually Do: Try, fail, make excuses for yourself. Next year?

What You Should Do: Find a support group that will help you, and put a lot of effort into making this work. Talk to people and lean on others for advice and encouragement when you feel weak. Realize that you will mess up a few times, but that’s OK. Giving up a bad habit isn’t supposed to be easy.

7. Keep things clean and organized at all times

What You Actually Do: Clean up your room or desk once, then have one day where you need to find something, and make a huge mess looking for it.

What You Should Do: Set aside one day during the week that you devote at least an hour to cleaning whatever you want to keep organized. This will eventually keep you from getting too messy during the week, but it will also allow you some leeway. Also, if you’re trying to keep your life organized, buy a planner and write everything down!

8. Read more books — one new book a month

What You Actually Do: Read a few new books, then remember you have Netflix.

What You Should Do: Make a list of books you want to read, and take your time going through them. Set aside an hour or so to read on the nights you’re the least busy. Don’t rush through books to try to accomplish something. Remember to enjoy them!

9. Get more sleep

What You Actually Do: Spend a few nights laying in bed trying to sleep, then give up. You can sleep when you’re dead, right?

What You Should Do: At least get in bed a little bit earlier than normal so that your body and mind can relax. If you can’t sleep, just let yourself calm down.

10. Cut off contact with that one toxic person in your life

What You Actually Do: Feel guilty and/or sad about doing that, and convince yourself you need them.

What You Should Do: Slowly cut all ties with this person in whatever way works for you, and realize that it’s OK if it takes months to get it done.

11. Do something new and different every day

What You Actually Do: Forget. Every single day. Who has the time to do this?!

What You Should Do: Vow to do something new and different once a month, and realize it doesn’t have to be something big. It can be as simple as going to see a movie by yourself if you’ve never done that before, or taking a road trip an hour away.

12. Spend more time with family

What You Actually Do: Hang out with your family once, get in a fight with everyone, and remind yourself why that was an impossible resolution.

What You Should Do: Hang out with your damn family. Even if they annoy you, they’re still important!

The practice of Gratitude

I was driving on the freeway one day during the height of a stressful period at work when I suddenly felt very dizzy. I quickly pulled the car over and sat on the side of the road. As I listened to the traffic buzzing by me, I felt completely empty and lost. I knew I wanted to leave my job, this was the direction I wanted to go, but a new life meant I would be making one tenth of my previous salary and had none of the perks that come with a powerful job. I had spent most of my life working and going from one vacation to the next, always looking for the next big thing to occupy my thoughts. Wanting was my typical state of mind, but I finally realized that what I wanted was to no longer want. 

 

We hear more and more about people letting go of stressful jobs, relationships, or other interests in order to seek a meaningful life through spiritual practices such as Yoga. It’s a big transition, and often people are not prepared for the realities of losing the identity they had previously known and walking away from titles, status and salaries. It can seem overwhelming and make you doubt your choice – some say they felt more lost and unsure transitioning then they did in the original gloom that initiated the desire for change. Beginning a daily practice of gratitude can help to relax and sooth you through the life-changer, moving you from a state of lack to one that is grounded in the understanding that the universe will provide exactly what you need to thrive in each moment.

Reflecting on what you have and what you enjoy about life (for example, good health, good friends, a place to live, a fulfilling spiritual practice) helps to shift focus towards what you have instead of what you want, opening up life and making it more smooth. When you resist what is in front of you and live in an ideal future or past, you are working against the flow where it is harder to manifest what you need. This resistance can look like frustration, anxiety or impatience

 Simple practices of gratitude

Gratitude changes everything. It can move you from a state of lack to one in which you understand that you have everything you need to thrive in this moment. It helps you see that the experience of life is a gift, one you can cherish each day.

How often do you appreciate what you have? We recommend doing it at least daily, but the more you express thanks for what you have been given, the more you will find to be thankful for. Here are three of our favorite practices:

  1. Begin and end your day with a statement of gratitude. Keep a gratitude journal near your bed that you add to each day. During those times when you need a reminder of what you have in life, take a look through the pages.
  2. Be grateful for your meals. Gratitude is good for digestion. Before each meal, spend a moment honoring all who brought you that food. The farmers, the cooks and mother nature have all done a lot to bring you this nourishment.
  3. Count out the simple things you have. A bed to sleep on, a meal, a friend to talk to — you’ll be surprised to see how much is available to you. When you express appreciation for the small things, you welcome greater abundance in your life.

Practice gratitude during the difficult times, as well as when life flows with ease. Being grateful doesn’t mean challenges go away, but having this perspective allows you to climb to a higher place and get a better view of what you’re going through. After all, challenges are gifts that help you let go of your lower ego and connect with your higher self.

Remember this: The universe never stops providing what you need to grow as spirit. Find appreciation for that alone and you’ll never run out of things to be thankful for.

Namaste x

Yoga Nidra योग निद्रा – what is it?

It is interesting to see how yoga nidra, where we literally do ‘nothing’, can do wonders for the body and mind. I find yoga nidra as restorative as sleep, or even much more than sleep. It offers benefits that go deep down to the subtler levels of our personality.

We often equate ‘relaxation’ with activities like listening to music or walking in nature, or simply having a quiet time. Relaxation is something we do naturally, and we don’t need any special training or techniques.

However, deep relaxation is something very different. It quietens your mind and releases physical tension in your body. In a state of deep relaxation, your heart beat and breathing slow down, and your body and mind become deeply calm.

There are many techniques to help you relax deeply, including the practice of yoga nidra, or ‘psychic sleep’.

Yoga nidra comes from the Indian yoga tradition. The guided technique could be described as a lying down form of meditation that uses the whole body as a focus of awareness. It works on something called our body of energy or life force, which in India is known as prana, and in China it is called chi.

Nearly all spiritual traditions acknowledge the existence of a body of energy that permeates the physical body and is responsible for our health and well being. The aim of acupuncture and all martial arts, for example, is to balance and enhance the flow of life force in your body.

Yoga nidra also aims to enhance and balance this energy. Moreover, it does so in an enjoyable and effortless way that involves no costly equipment or training. Some practitioners describe yoga nidra as a form of self-administered acupuncture.

Practitioners say that with regular practice, yoga nidra can have profound physical, psychological and spiritual benefits. The most common feedback we get is that stress and tension is released, and sleep is enhanced.

Importantly, please remember, Yoga Nidra requires no previous meditation experience – it’s for everyone! Our mind may tell us that Hatha yoga and the ‘difficult postures, balance, or strength required’ to do a class is not for ‘me’; however Yoga nidra is a practice that everyone from children to seniors can do very easily. It’s easy to follow at any age, and all that is needed is your body! Preferably you lie down on the floor, but if you can’t do that, you can still do this practice seated. It’s also something you can do anywhere, anytime. Learn the techniques and then enjoy the benefits of this practice while you’re lying on the beach, sitting at your work desk, or “watching” a star wars / romantic comedy with your loved one (for the females / males respectively).

We look forward to seeing you on Monday nights at Nundah, 6:30pm!

New Year, New Yoga Resolutions

At this time of year, I always find myself contemplating resolutions. Fast forward a month, another year and I find myself contemplating the fact I didn’t stick to any of my resolutions, and thus resolving not to have any resolutions in the future… and yet the cycle continues.

But 2016 is going to be different for me. I can feel it. Because now… (drum roll please) I am a yogi. Well… kind of. I want to be a yogi. I fancy becoming a yogi. I want 2016 to be the year of the accidental yogi. Let me share with you my new year, new yogi resolutions – and then check back in with me in a month or a year to see if – wait, I mean HOW – I follow through on them all.

1. To touch my toes

OK, OK, I know that’s not a really legit resolution, but I wanted to ease into my resolutions…

2. To do more yoga

So far this year, I have managed to practice sporadically. I wouldn’t exactly say it was a regular practice. I have been known to make excuses to get out of class from time to time. When I get stressed, I prioritise my work, or when I’m tired I still choose to sleep over practicing yoga. I KNOW this is not good for me. And I want to get to the point where I prioritise my yoga, because I know how good it feels. It’s not about losing weight or getting flexy (aside from resolution number one) or getting toned and looking good (though I will admit that would be nice… see resolution three!) – it’s about being strong, healthy, happy and calm in my day to day life.

3. To invest in some lovely new yoga gear

Oops – the old non-yogi me demanded to take control of at least one resolution so let’s indulge her for a minute. The way I see it, if I have a dedicated yoga wardrobe – you know, those quick dry patterned yoga pants that feel like a second skin, non-slip Bikram mats, soft fluffy towels for wrapping up after class, sweet smelling organic shower products and a luxe oversized slouch bag to stash them all in – I am more likely to go to class and achieve the above point! And hey – I did switch to organic rather than commercial products that pollute our water! And with all the laundry I’m going to need to do to accommodate all these clothes after all these classes, I need to be conscious of the environment however I can be!

4. To learn more about yoga

With all things in my life, I tend to do them best when I appreciate the reasoning behind it – whether it’s a language, a skill, a dish I can cook, a movie I know all the behind the scenes trivia about (hello Star Wars!) or a piece of electronic equipment I use. And so it stands to reason that yoga would be the same. I’ve discovered our teachers are a font of knowledge on the subject of yoga, and I have learnt a lot from them already, and don’t get me started on good old Google. From technique and philosophy to anatomy and spirituality (and let’s not forget Sanskrit!), there is just so much to absorb, to learn, to embrace, and I can’t wait to know more.

5. If I can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all

We learn this as children, but I have found as I grow older, it is easy to become cynical. It’s easy to use sarcasm as a form of wit. It’s all too easy to complain about things that don’t make you happy. It’s easy to moan and groan when things don’t go your way. But the more ‘yoga people’ I am surrounded by, the more yoga websites and blogs I read and the more yogic my life becomes, I realise life doesn’t have to be surrounded by negativity. In reality, it should be just as easy to gush when we love something, to smile when we’re happy and to compliment someone when they’ve done a good job. So for me, I’m going to think before I speak from now on. If it isn’t positive, why put it out there in the world?

6. Be patient

This is a simple one. No more honking the horn when the person in front of me drives at 20 kilometres an hour. Rather, just slow down and enjoy the view. No getting frustrated when a client is late for a meeting. Just use the time to catch up on emails, or Facebook gossip, or whatever your online preference may be. No huffing and puffing when I still can’t get my legs into my armpit and feet off the ground in Crow position. Be patient. It will come…

7. To be more conscious about what I put in my body

Now. This is a classic resolution for many people, however it usually starts as a negative. For example. Having a resolution not to drink. Not to eat chocolate. Not to have a cheeky Mc Drive Thru after yoga, but by starting with this negative ‘not’, I believe you’re setting yourself up to fail. So I’m going to flip it. I have a resolution to eat more fresh vegetables. To drink lots of vibrant, colourful juices. To guzzle water by the gallon (not in class though – it’s just a sip, right Sherry?). To have healthy snacks on hand to avoid splurging. To respect my body by treating it to things that make it feel good, and ultimately contributing to making my practice run smoothly.

8. Be grateful

I am indeed grateful for everything in my life, but sometimes it’s easy to slip into some unconsciously selfish behaviours (hello resolution number three!). So this year I would like to make much more of a conscious effort to be grateful for the many things around me. For starters – I live in Australia! What a beautiful, stunning, breathtaking, magical place. And the nature here – just wow. I get to write about places, people and things that I love, from the comfort of my own home with my beautiful kitty cats on my lap. What a beautiful way to spend my days – and be lucky enough to get paid for it. I feel privileged to practice yoga in a welcoming, non judgemental studio with wonderful teachers. My life is pretty great. But I think it’s important to take stock of that, and just be consciously grateful of that.

9. Breathe.

Because that’s what yoga is all about.

10. To be more yogic

I guess this resolution is a little like the sum of all the parts of the above resolutions (perhaps minus numbers one and three), but I do feel it deserves recognition in it’s own right. I would like to wake up in the morning and be conscious, be aware, be a good person, be grateful, be humble, be strong, be dedicated, be healthy, be helpful, be wise, be caring, be giving, be non-attached and above all, be happy. I am yogi… hear me om!

How Bikram yoga helps overcome eating disorder

My name is Molly and about 2 years ago I dared myself to take my first Bikram yoga class. See, I had been struggling with an eating disorder for over 10 years, and at 92 lbs my body gave out. I lost complete control of myself and I no longer could function in my daily life. I was sad, I was scared and I was so fragile. After being recommended for an out patient treatment program I fell even deeper into my sickness. I was starving my self daily and any calorie I did intake I purged. I was practically daring death to come find me. I knew that recovery scared me and that I would fight it tooth and nail if it wasn’t on my own terms. at my own pace, and done in the most natural way, so I made a deal. I made a deal with my mother that I would recover on my own, I would find and support my own team of doctors who would teach me nutrition, help me explore my real issues and take my weekly vitals to make sure I wasn’t slipping. I was dedicated to being better and although it was unbelievably hard I finally reached a point when my primary care physician told me I could start to be a bit more physically active. No running or spinning, and no beating my self against a machine, I just had to find something to make my body strong and feel better again. And so, by chance, I found Bikram Yoga. After 90 minutes I was high. I was hooked. Bikram Yoga helped me to find peace with in my self, appreciation of my body, and the ability to smell, taste, feel and love again (all things I had lost). With this new found peace I found so much. In a year in a half I was in love with a fellow yogi, so much in so we bought a house and a puppy and play with her each day. My life was finally full because I had found my spiritual self through this practice. But that’s not it.

After a few months of yoga, I went for my first bone density scan. My doctor gave me the bad news. At 25 I had osteoporosis in my spine and hips. I was devastated, but driven to keep pushing my self to become a better version of myself, even if it was just a heir’s breath. A year after hearing the news of my diagnosis, and staring at little old ladies who were hunched in pain, I went for my second dexi-scan. My doctor warned me, “Molly, bone density takes a long time to build, we are looking for no movement, it will take years for your bones to re-grow.” With anxiety, I waited for my results.

“Ok, Molly, so I have some news for you.” Beth was about to run down all of my test results, including my dexi-scan.”Your cholesterol, is the lowest I have ever seen, 95, I credit that to your hard work and yoga, your estrogen is over 50, when I met you it was under 20, that of a 90 year old and the grand finally, your bone density. You have had an 11 percent increase in your spine and a 5 percent increase in your hips. Be very proud, your hard work is paying off.” This yoga is saving my life. I will never be hunched over and I will have opportunities to have babies with the man that I love. Bikram’s yoga has taught me that health is a life style and it is one that is to be embraced in what you eat, what you do, and how you behave through out the day. I thank both of you for all of your inspiration!

My dream is to help other people like me. To use nutrition and Bikram yoga to help struggling women and men to adopt a life style that is fulfilling inside and out. I am strong because of all of the hard work I have done inside of 90 minutes and I want to share my strength with others. Thank you for bringing this yoga to me, for saving my life, and helping me realize my dream

Why Bikram Yoga?

Whitney Bikram Yoga

Instead of asking “Why Bikram yoga?” or even “Why yoga?” – it’s important to first ask why do anything at all that makes you feel better?

Yes, a lot of people feel great with their exercise routine of running, jumping, swimming or lifting weight and following their raw, paleo or vegan diet lifestyles. They should keep doing that. However, as someone who has experienced all sorts of exercises and the injuries that come with them, Bikram yoga helped me the most.

I graduated with a degree in exercise prescription. During my work and studies, I was introduced to a variety of exercises and therapy programs. After years in the health industry, I learned about Bikram yoga and its benefits. Eventually, I made the decision to become a Bikram yoga instructor with the goal of combining my knowledge of the exercise world with yoga and providing my students with the best possible solutions throughout their healing journeys.

Here are five things that I really enjoy about the Bikram yoga practice:

    1. The Bikram yoga routine:

As an instructor for over 10 years and a practitioner for over 12 years, I have learned that the Bikram practice increases the practitioner’s self-awareness, physical and mental strength and brings a new level of determination. Consistency is undeniably important to maintain your routine, and Bikram’s class is definitely a precise sequence. The beginner sequence always follows the same 26 postures and two breathing exercises, which allow us to deepen our practice and understand how each posture works, and how it impacts us. If we start to modify a posture instead of taking the time to do it more slowly, we can lose the therapeutic effect.

    1. The heat in the Bikram yoga practice

If there’s one thing Bikram is known for, it is that it’s hot and sometimes really hot. The heat sometimes scares people, but it is the heat that allows people to move more easily into postures. The temperatures also helps detoxify the body.

    1. The accessibility of the Bikram yoga practice

Bikram yoga is a practice accessible to everyone. Anyone who passes me on the street — the athlete, the elderly, the emotionally or physically broken soul, the young student or skateboarder — all of these people would be able to do Bikram’s beginning yoga series. For example, athletes may push themselves to their limits, but for someone with a bad back or bad knees this will be a very different process. The goal is to stay committed. It is a practice that everyone can work with. It stimulates the organs and the flow of oxygenated blood throughout your whole body.

    1. Bikram yoga as a stress reliever

Bikram Choudhury scientifically designed the introductory sequence to provide a complete workout through the balancing and strengthening of every system in the body, which should prevent illnesses and injuries. The series of postures combines elements of concentration, patience, determination and self-control, which lead to increased mental clarity and reduces stress. A regular practice of Bikram yoga also improves body posture and spine alignment. It relieves back pains and headaches, strengthens muscles, reduces symptoms of chronic diseases, gives better self-confidence, improves body image, improves flexibility, balance and strength and gives a general feeling of wellness and peace. Taking the time to do yoga will rejuvenate you.

    1. The role of Bikram yoga in one’s life

One thing that attracted me the most to Bikram was that it is pure. There are no distractions; it’s just you and your mat. When Bikram becomes your practice, you have it for life. Life is not easy and often, we are faced with difficult challenges that take away our energy, focus and ambitions. We feel as though we are on the edge, but it is in these moments that Bikram yoga provides you with the stability, clarity and motivation to start over and stay strong.

Bikram yoga works. It’s the way the series was designed … its systematic and perfect for me — and might just be for you too.

 

Author, Whitney Rydingsvard McCormick

Directer / Owner of Bikram Yoga U-District, Seattle

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