June 08, 2010

Bikram - Sort Of

Having taken it mellow yesterday with a pseudo-yin / gentle hybrid, I thought I'd check out a hot class which was for all intents and purposes, Bikram. Pretty much kicked my ass....

The good: a strong hot practice, 90 minutes of bad ass yoga. A lot of familiar postures (I have a secret crush on Bikram's triangle). With my cranky shoulders, the bikram sequence is not so bad - no chaturanga, no deep shoulder opening (like ostrich, archer, bridge). The balancing work was very challenging. The mini-savasana between poses was kind of nice.

The less good: Really a struggle to keep eyes open, use the mirrors, and keep my head in the right alignment after years of a different discipline. A number of the postures were difficult for my body. And I could see getting bored with the practice quickly; part of my yoga fix is turning off the mind and listening to the teacher - Bikram is a bit too measured and engineered; I'd be looking ahead, counting asana's, etc. once I became familiar with the sequence.

I think I'd also miss a lot of the variety of my present practices. No inversions. No arm balancing. No ab work. No vinyasa. No laying own twists, no deep hip openers. And no dance of sequencing, no teacher-student dialogue, no delightful discoveries of new postures, new sequences, no challenges.

But, a good practice once in a while, certainly a great chance to detox. I probably do not want to do that practice every time I hit the mat, and the different head and neck holdings would challenge me.

I'll probably hit Inner Fire Yoga one more time this week. Three nice practices while traveling for work is not bad at all!

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