What is with the Yoga stuff? Let me say I am concluding this limited series on this subject having gone back for another class after being our of the game for X years. Getting back into something physical and challenging is a bitch+. It is a common thread for a lot of people who have been secluded over time with the pandemic.
Occasionally exercise is the only sanity for people. Thankfully for those people who operate solo, those not into team things, it was probably a glorious time? But for some of us that thrive with group activities it must have been soul crushing. I vacillate somewhere in the middle and lean more toward group activities.
So, I went back to the class with a different teacher and a whole other frame of mind. It was first thing in the morning, the teacher was a white guy about my age. I told him about my physical issues and I was told immediately: Do not try and alter any of the poses. Well, that made me nervous.
In most yoga teachings it is common that the student is reminded to not let the ego take over. Operate at the level you are meant to. Don’t hurt yourself. Bikram, from what I can tell (based on the previously mentioned documentary and this teacher’s reaction) is very rigid and authoritarian in practice.
I made it through the class and nothing broke. The instructor was kind and helpful. I felt like a hot mess by the end. Because this class was a lot more difficult that the first. The heat in the room was killing me, but it needed it. My lungs (asthma) were not having it either. But, I pushed through gratefully.
Yes, I still think Bikram is a dumbed down version of yoga and those subscribing to it are getting what they need. It is a great physical activity, but it always seems to have a plateau. For someone like me, that is okay today. Any physical activity is good for me and these classes and the School of India Yoga in Oakland, California are a good service for that.