I HAVE NEVER DONE YOGA BEFORE. CAN I DO THIS?
Anyone of any age and physical condition can do this yoga. Yoga is not a means to an end; it is a practice. Students are asked to practice to the best of their ability. New students practice right along side more advanced students. The goal of Bikram Yoga is not to twist the body into bizarre pretzel shapes, but to strengthen the body’s natural range of motion. Every day is different and every person is unique. If you are doing the posture correctly, you are doing it perfectly at that moment.
WHAT IF I AM NOT FLEXIBLE?
This is the most common misconception that prevents people from coming to a yoga class. But yoga is not about how flexible you are. It is about stretching your body and spine in all directions. If you simply try the right way, your balance, endurance and flexibility will naturally increase. You will be receiving 100% of the benefits.
WHY IS THE ROOM HOT?
The room is kept between 95 and 105 degrees to keep the body from overheating (contrary to popular belief), protect muscles and allow for deeper stretching, detoxify the body (open pores to let toxins out), thin the blood to clear the circulatory system, increase heart rate for better cardiovascular workout, improve strength by putting muscle tissue in the optimal state for reorganization, and reorganizing lipids (fat) in the muscular structure.
CAN THIS YOGA HELP ME LOSE WEIGHT?
A minimum of 10 classes per month is recommended to get the benefits of Bikram yoga, among which is weight normalization. As a beginner, it takes three classes for your body to learn the proper approach to the postures, and ten classes for your body to begin to work with postures. You will realize optimization of all your body systems. Digestion and respiration, as well as endocrine, lymphatic and elimination systems will begin to work together. Your appetite will normalize and your unhealthy cravings will diminish. All of these results will help to normalize your weight if you devote yourself to regular practice.
WHAT IF I HAVE A PREVIOUS INJURY OR ILLNESS?
During practice, focus on doing the posture correctly and to the best of your ability. With time, you will find that you are able to go deeper into the postures.
If you are afraid that doing a posture might aggravate an injury or illness, talk to an instructor first. They are there to help you get the most out your practice in a safe manner.
WHAT ARE THE HIGHER GOALS OF YOGA?
Deep breathing is the key to longer life. Yoga achieves union of body, mind and spirit. It stills the thought waves of the mind and helps achieve liberation and relief from suffering of all kinds.
WHAT CAN I EXPECT THE NEXT DAY?
If this is your first class, you might be a little sore the next day. However, the room is heated to allow you to stretch your muscles without getting sore. It is recommended that you drink lots of water both before and after class, take a bath in two pounds of epsom salts and come back to yoga the next day. The more consistently you can practice, the more your body becomes used to the workout, and the better you will feel!
WHAT SHOULD I WEAR TO CLASS?
Women should wear a leotard or workout shorts and a tank top. Men should wear workout shorts or a bathing suit. Long or loose clothing is not recommended. Also, bring a towel, mat and plenty of water to class. Mats are sold at the studio.
ARE THERE ANY RULES OR “ETIQUETTE” TO FOLLOW AT YOUR STUDIO?
- Please take your shoes off at the door
- Come on time as an exception. Come early as a rule to sign in at desk
- If you are late, please make your entrance as unobtrusive as possible
- Deodorant is great; strong perfumes or lotions are not
- Be mindful of your neighbor’s space and visibility in the mirror.
- Tailor your practice by modifying the depth, not by avoiding postures or changing them. As Bikram says, “Try the right way.” Form and placement with deep breathing always trumps depth
- Leave your space as you found it
- Observe silence while class is in session, whether practicing or not
- Be good to yourself
- Change your negative language to more positive i.e. (“I can’t” to “I’ll try”). Try this technique and you’ll be shocked at the results