Back to Bikram

Listen, people: not all yoga is created equal. I say this with the caveat that not all good things have to be equal, they just have to be what they ARE, and with the other caveat that what's best for one might be blah for another. But for me, today, God bless Bikram.

My mat hasn't (necessarily) been getting rusty lately. My new studio in Auckland came with a twist: hot-ish vinyasa flow and yin (i.e. a group nap!) alongside the classic 90 + 60 Bikram sets. It's been fun to explore the new types of practice -- remembering muscles that I'd forgotten about, and just learning to relax.

But it's gotten waaaaay too easy to trade a good old fashioned sweat torture session for a nice, civilized flow. My mascara doesn't run and (!!!) people don't react so viscerally when you ask them to join. It feels kind and beautiful.

Today, I marched myself back to the hot room, and I remembered why it captured me 4 years ago. Brave, courageous, strong and balanced, those 90 minutes invite me to be my favorite self. I remembered too, the dark moments that were walked through, 90 minutes by 90 minutes, and caught a glint of my inner bulldog. 

Not for everyone, but definitely for me. And for now. Bring on the backbends!