Saturday, February 5, 2011

It's All Good

I've been practicing Bikram yoga for over 4 years now and I have always had a "love, hate" relationship with it....sometimes I love it more than I hate it, and visa versa.

I always love it when I have a good practice! Which is fairly often, as I do, in fact, have a good practice. I love it when I feel light and flexible. But it's probably the heat and the sweat that I love the most.

I dislike the inconsistency of the "teaching". In fact very few of the "teachers" knows anything about the body, yoga, stretching or strength, only knowing Bikrams dialogue and the whatever misinformation they have picked up from other teachers. And this is probably what bothers me most.... If I want to know more about a pose, then I come home and ask Mark!

I'm not going to get into all of that now because yesterday I finally realized that I was making myself feel bad about the practice (not MY practice, but THE practice). Because I live with and expert teacher and coach I have very high standards, and I know for a fact that Bikrams yoga lacks in number of ways....but that's not my problem and, lucky me, I can coach myself through my practice, which is why it's as good as it is.

My point is that Bikrams has been good for me. Bikrams is good for alot of people, but so are other yoga styles, or any kind physical activity that one choses to practice....even running if it makes you feel good. It's all good!

One thing doesn't have to be "bad" in order to make something else "good". I'm going to stop feeling bad about the fact that I practice Bikrams, and like it!

Three months ago I started a Vinyasa Flow practice in addition to Bikrams, and I'm looking into starting Ashtanga. I'm interested in what's best for my body and mind. Reminding myself that yoga is not about burning calories, and not about "exercise"....I get enough of that with kettlebells! But I feel I need to cut back on Bikrams because the challenge of the other practices will help me grow in more ways that the comfort of Bikrams. In fact, Bikrams gave me a foundation to try the other yoga styles, and practicing the other styles has improved my Bikrams!

I considered giving up Bikrams completely for 1 month to focus on some other styles, but I don't always need to be "all or nothing"...or maybe I do! It's all good.


Maribel said...

Vinyasa always compliments my Bikram practice. And yes, I agree, it's all about MY practice as well. I really lose myself in yoga in that I can block out everyone and everything when I practice. It's like I'm all alone in the room.

I don't know why yoga instructors are so quick to knock another type of yoga. I've experience Vinyasa teachers knocking Bikram, and vice versa. To me, they all compliment each other and some days I prefer one over the other but each and every time I finish a practice I'm so grateful for it, whichever it happens to be that day.

Tracy Reifkind said...


I think one of the keys to chosing which physical activities we chose to spend our time on is to think about complimenting one with another.