I did a Yoga class last night, and I swear I am taller today. Perhaps that is wishful thinking but what I did notice was sitting cross-legged at the end of the class was much more comfortable than at the beginning of the 90 minute session. I have done Yoga in the past. I won’t say that I enjoyed it as much as I knew it was good for me. That’s the way I feel about broccoli. There are some things in life that you just do.
Yoga has been around for thousands of years. Like all things in life it has changed to meet the demands of society as they have evolved. Today, many gyms offer programs like “Power Yoga” or “Body Flow”. There’s one called “Yogalates”. That is not a drink. It is a fitness class that offers a fusion of Yoga and Pilates. The best of both worlds they say. The Body Flow class combines Yoga, Pilates with Tai Chi. I’m guessing that Power Yoga is plain hard work. Thankfully there are still classes available that follow the traditional style Yoga.
I am not a Yoga instructor. I know that the Yoga instructor training is intense. I believe it is 200 hours. The class last night reminded me of why. The instructor was amazing. We started with lying down on our backs on the floor, and we pretty much ended that way. In between we moved from Plank to Downward Dog to the Warrior Pose and then back to the floor for some other pretzel-like positions. There was a whole bunch of focusing and deep breathing tied in with some meditative movements. Overall, it was a wonderful 1.5 hours.
I in no way mean to make light of any type of Yoga class, whether it be one of the traditional versions like Hatha, Ashtanga or Yin (yes, I had to look those up) or one of the newer versions already mentioned. I stick to my position that all movement is awesome. It once again comes down to what works for you. Your body has to feel good during and after an exercise session. The most important thing is that you have to want to do it again or ultimately you won’t.
What I loved about last night’s class was that I was able to move my body in ways that I usually don’t. I didn’t ever feel like I couldn’t keep up with the group. Sure I was nowhere near as flexible as some of the others in attendance. My Downward Dog felt more like a Crouching Dog but that didn’t matter. I left the room feeling nicely tired and little bit stronger both physically and mentally. Most importantly, I want to go back. Does it get any better than that?
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