Let's Talk Yoga


Peace Love n Pretty Tings
anyone here practice yoga?

if so, what kind?

if not, do you even want to attempt it in the future? :kicks


Peace Love n Pretty Tings
I finally have become consistent with doing my practice. And I'm starting to reap the benefits of that consistency. I mainly do Hatha yoga and a bit of Ashtanga. But started doing Bikram yoga as well this summer.
Here is a short list of the main types people practice. Although the list of types out there is far longer. She separates Hot Yoga from Bikram whereas most consider them the same thing....with "hot" yoga being a subset of Bikram since the postes are from that discipline:

1. Anusara

Developed by American yogi John Friend in 1997, anusara yoga is a relative newcomer to the yoga world. Based on the belief that we are all filled with an intrinsic goodness, anusara seeks to use the physical practice of yoga to help students open their hearts, experience grace, and let their inner goodness shine through. Classes, which are specifically sequenced by the teacher to explore one of Friend's Universal Principles of Alignment, are rigorous for the body and the mind.

2. Ashtanga

Ashtanga is based on ancient yoga teachings, but it was popularized and brought to the West by Pattabhi Jois (pronounced "pah-tah-bee joyce") in the 1970s. It's a rigorous style of yoga that follows a specific sequence of postures and is similar to vinyasa yoga, as each style links every movement to a breath. The difference is that ashtanga always performs the exact same poses in the exact same order. This is a hot, sweaty, physically demanding practice.

3. Bikram

Approximately 30 years ago, Bikram Choudhury developed this school of yoga where classes are held in artificially heated rooms. In a Bikram class, you will sweat like you've never sweated before as you work your way through a series of 26 poses (like ashtanga, a Bikram class always follows the same sequence, although a Bikram sequence is different from an ashtanga sequence). Bikram is somewhat controversial, as Choudhury has trademarked his sequence and has prosecuted studios who call themselves Bikram but don't teach the poses exactly the way he says they should. It is also wildly popular, making it one of the easiest types of classes to find.

4. Hatha

Hatha yoga is a generic term that refers to any type of yoga that teaches physical postures. Nearly every type of yoga class taught in the West is hatha yoga. When a class is marketed as hatha, it generally means that you will get a gentle introduction to the most basic yoga postures. You probably won't work up a sweat in a hatha yoga class, but you should end up leaving class feeling longer, looser, and more relaxed.

5. Hot Yoga

Basically the same thing as Bikram. Generally, the only difference between Bikram and hot yoga is that the hot yoga studio deviates from Bikram's sequence in some small way, and so they must call themselves by another name. The room will be heated, and you will sweat buckets.

6. Iyengar

Iyengar yoga was developed and popularized by B.K.S. Iyengar (pronounced "eye-yen-gar"). Iyengar is a very meticulous style of yoga, with utmost attention paid to finding the proper alignment in a pose. In order to help each student find the proper alignment, an Iyengar studio will stock a wide array of yoga props — blocks, blankets, straps, chairs, bolsters, and a rope wall are all common. There isn't a lot of jumping around in Iyengar classes, so you won't get your heart rate up, but you'll be amazed to discover how physically and mentally challenging it is to stay put. Iyengar teachers must undergo a comprehensive training – if you have an injury or chronic condition, Iyengar is probably your best choice to insure you get the knowledgeable instruction you need.

7. Restorative

Restorative yoga is a delicious way to way to relax and soothe frayed nerves. Restorative classes use bolsters, blankets, and blocks to prop students in passive poses so that the body can experience the benefits of a pose without having to exert any effort. A good restorative class is more rejuvenating than a nap. Studios and gyms often offer them on Friday nights, when just about everyone could use a little profound rest.

8. Vinyasa

Vinyasa (pronounced "vin-yah-sah") is the Sanskrit word for "flow", and vinyasa classes are known for their fluid, movement-intensive practices. Vinyasa teachers choreograph their classes to smoothly transition from pose to pose, and often play music to keep things lively. The intensity of the practice is similar to Ashtanga, but no two vinyasa classes are the same. If you hate routine and love to test your physical limits, vinyasa may be just your ticket.


Peace Love n Pretty Tings
Found an article on Black doctors org that breaks down the difference between Bikram & Hot Yoga:

Hot yoga, sometimes called Bikram yoga refers to yoga exercises performed under hot and humid conditions. What is Hot Yoga?
Hot yoga can refer to any yoga class done in a heated room. The room is usually maintained at a temperature of 95-100 degrees Fahrenheit. Most often, hot yoga tends to be a flowing, vinyasa style of practice in which the teacher instructs a series of linked poses. As you can imagine, a vigorous yoga session at high temperature promotes profuse sweating and makes the body very warm.

Bikram Yoga is slightly different. Living yoga master Bikram Choudhury created a set series of 26 postures, including two pranayama exercises, each of which is performed twice in a single 90-minute class. Choudhury, who was born in Calcutta, India in 1946, was a yoga champion in his youth, as was his wife Rajashree. In 1974, the Choudhurys founded the Yoga College of India in Beverly Hills, California, to teach his method, which soon became one of the most popular styles of yoga asana practiced in the west. In 2002, Choudhury successfully copyrighted his series of 26 poses done in a hot room and has since been involved in a number of legal disputes, both over the unauthorized use of his name, and, more recently, the use of his method under a different name.

In summary, Bikram yoga is hot, but not all hot yoga is Bikram.


Peace Love n Pretty Tings
Yoga, Racial Diversity and Cultural Appropriation:

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/sOJTtycumGU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

A new documentary series called “Yoga and Diversity” seeks to explore the relationships between yoga, race, class, gender and more. Produced by a new non-profit called Global Mind Body, the four part series questions why yoga classes don’t reflect the diversity of of their surrounding communities. Often yoga classes are quite monolithic and don’t speak to the reality of the communities around them.

This film features perspectives of some of the leading voices trying to increase and expand awareness about yoga and diversity. Included in the documentary are Kim Katrin Crosby, Roseanne Harvey, Tiina Veer, Diane Bondy, Sarah Mostafa-Kamel, Kelly Boaz, Jamilah Malika and more.

Readers of popular yoga magazines like Yoga Journal know that the images both in articles and in advertising often reflect a narrow standard of beauty. In what ways do these messages express convey that only these types of people are welcome in yoga? Seeing skinny, white, blonde yoga teachers over and over again in magazines, studio ads, teacher trainings…etc. reinforces a narrow vision of who yoga is for.

Readers of Decolonizing Yoga will know that these issues of are central on the site. We’ve published numerous articles that explore how yoga, race, diversity, feminism and gender intersect. Hopefully more videos and documentaries like “Yoga and Diversity” will continue to explore not only these topics but also address pertinent and viable solutions to them.

About Global Mind Body:

“Global Mind Body is a non-profit online yoga and meditation community. We build connections, share stories and help each other cultivate a healthy practice. We publish engaging content that explores new perspectives on ancient wisdom. We showcase upcoming workshops, retreats, classes and teacher trainings in your community.”

- See more at: http://www.decolonizingyoga.com/yog...-race-gender-class-yoga/#sthash.W886YJ9o.dpuf


Peace Love n Pretty Tings
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Peace Love n Pretty Tings
Contains some good tips for first timers in a Bikram class:


Among my circle of friends, family, and acquaintances, I’ve developed a bit of a reputation as a Bikram yoga fanatic and all-around yoga nerd.

And I’ll admit, it’s true: I go to class every day. I blog about it. I talk about it. I live it, breathe it, eat it, sleep it, love it!

Okay…that might be a little overly dramatic, but you get the point.

Perhaps because of this, I get asked a lot of questions from curious individuals who have heard of Bikram before, and are thinking about trying it out, but are just a little nervous. I mean let’s face it, the prospect of going into a room heated to 105 degrees for 90 minutes and doing 26 postures and two breathing exercises is a little daunting, right? Understandable!

The most frequent question I get is either: “I’m thinking about signing up for a Bikram class! Should I be scared?” or “I just signed up for a Bikram class! Am I going to die???”

The short answer to both is NO, absolutely not!

The long answer is also NO, absolutely not, but there are a few things you should think about before your first class, and a few things you can do before, after, and during class to ensure a positive first experience in the hot room!

So without further ado, for all of you who have asked and all of you who haven’t, here is my list of 20 tips, tricks, and hints for your first Bikram yoga class! Enjoy!

Before Class…*

1. Hydrate. But not too much. Drink plenty of water throughout the day leading up to your first class. Now don’t go crazy and guzzle liter after liter or anything, but do add a little more water than normal to your daily routine. You don’t want to arrive at class and realize that Ooops, all you’ve had to drink all day is a gallon of iced coffee and a diet coke.

Bad news bears. Also, you will want to stop drinking at least two hours before class. You know, just to make sure you don’t have to, errr… relieve yourself at any time during your practice.

2. Eat. But not too much. A hot yoga class can be very demanding on the body. Thus, you’ll want to make sure you’ve eaten enough during the day to fuel you through your class, and that what you’ve eaten has been fairly light and healthy. The day of your first hot yoga class is probably not the best time to hit up the all-you-can-eat Chinese buffet, or chow down on the Denny’s grand slam breakfast with extra bacon . Keep it light, keep it simple, and like with the hydrating thing, stop eating at least two hours before class. You don’t want anything churning around in your belly while you’re trying to “compress your abdominal wall, contract your abdominal muscles”!

3. Bring at least a liter of water with you to class. It’s hot in the room. You will sweat. You will get thirsty. Simple enough.

4. Don’t wear long pants. You will be very, very sorry. Tiny butt-hugging shorts, sports bra, and a tank top for the ladies, shorts or swim trunks for the gents. That’s all you need. Really.

5. Get there early. At least half an hour early. Gives you time to fill out the necessary paperwork, get changed, and get a good spot in the room. Also, many teachers give specific instructions at the beginning of class for first-timers, so you want to make sure you’re in the room to hear it and not still in the locker room fiddling with your tiny butt-hugging shorts.

6. Tell the teacher you’re new. It’s surprising how many people don’t want to do this. But really, the teacher is there to help you! Yoga teachers love to teach people about yoga. That’s why they’re teachers! And trust me, they want you to have the best experience possible on your first class, and they’ll do whatever they can to make that happen. So don’t be shy, march right up to the teacher, and pluckily say, “Hi, I’m (insert your name), and I’m new!” You’ll be best friends within minutes.

7. Ask where the “cool spot” is. Now that you’re BFF with the teacher, ask her (or him) where the best spot is for you to set up your mat. Most studios have a “cool spot”–often (but not always) near a door or a window–and this is usually where they recommend new people set up for their first class. Because, obviously, it’s a cool spot.

8. Set up your mat and towel(s). When you sign in to class, you will most likely be handed a yoga mat and two towels. Ommigod, what do you do with these things?!? Well, the mat goes on the floor. That’s an easy one. But the towels? That’s more of a matter of preference. If you’re not a heavy sweater, you’ll just take one of the two towels and place it right on top of your mat, right in the middle, so that it absorbs your sweat and keeps your mat from becoming the yogic equivalent of a Slip ‘n’ Slide.

HOWEVER. If you’re like me, and you sweat like an animal (nothing wrong with this, by the way) you will probably want to use both towels, laid out in a slightly overlapping way, covering your entire mat. For the record, this is how I set up my towels, and it works great!

9. Have NO expectations. That goes for expectations of yourself, the teacher, the class, the studio, etc. Expect NOTHING, and be open to EVERYTHING.

During Class…

10. Keep an open mind. If you’ve practiced other yoga before, just know that this will be different. Try not to be all HEY, THIS ISN’T HOW WE DO IT IN VINYASA/ASHTANGA/KUNDALINI/WHATEVER! Of course it’s not the same! This is Bikram! Listen to the teacher and be open to what she says, even when your brain tries to tell you something else.

11. Take lots of breaks. There’s no shame in sitting down! It’s your first class, go easy on yourself!

12. But not too many breaks. Then again, if you feel good, keep going! Don’t sit down just because you feel like you want to take a nap. Listen to your body really honestly, see what it tells you, and react accordingly.

13. Stay in the room. In every class, the teacher is guaranteed to remind you that staying in the room is the most important thing. Even if you have to sit the whole time, by staying in the room, maintaining your focus, and mentally staying with the class you are still practicing yoga. The heat is one of the greatest benefits of this practice, as it allows your body to open up and your muscles to release in ways they wouldn’t be able to otherwise, but it can also be the toughest thing to adjust to. By staying in the room, you give your body the time and space to make that adjustment.

14. Breathe. When things get tough, breathing will keep you alive! It can be hard to remember in the moment, but if at any point you feel yourself struggling in a pose, back off a little and recover your breath. I mean, let’s face it: if you’re not breathing, you’re unlikely to be doing anything else. KnowwhatImean?

After Class…

15. Don’t get up too fast! Take your time leaving the room, hanging up your mat, putting your towels in the bin, showering, etc. Your body may feel a smidge unusual. You’ve just worked every major muscle group–probably pretty darn hard–and detoxified yourself in a very big way! So respect that and don’t push it. Give yourself plenty of time to chill after class. If possible, don’t have ANYTHING you “have to do!!” the rest of the day. Take it easy.

16. Thank the teacher for this fresh hell she just put you through. It’s only polite. Yup! :kicks :kicks

17. If your studio has peppermint soap in the showers, don’t get it in your eyes and DON’T GET IT IN YOUR HOO-HAH! This is just practical advice. It burns. Trust me.

18. Re-hydrate. Have something with electrolytes. Coconut water is great, any kind of electrolyte water is too, even sports drinks will work. Also drink plenty of actual water. That’s that clear stuff that comes out of the tap.

19. Eat. Have a nice light healthy meal. Fruits, veggies, lean protein. You know, the “good” stuff.

20. Go back again tomorrow. WHAT?!? But that’s CRAZY, isn’t it?!??!? Actually, no it’s not. They say in Bikram “come back as soon as you can, as often as you can!”, and that’s especially true in your first week. Your body has to get used to this new, very different thing you’re doing, and the more frequently you go, the better opportunity it has to do just that.

So there you go, yoga people (and soon-to-be yoga people!), a few tips for your first journey into the hot room. Above all, remember to ENJOY YOURSELF! Bikram yoga can certainly be challenging at times, but don’t be intimidated! Like all forms of yoga, it’s not something to be learned and mastered in a day, or a month, or a year, or ten years! This practice is rich and deep and amazing and takes a lifetime, but that’s what makes it interesting and relevant! See this as a new adventure, a new experience, and a new way to explore the power of the mind-body connection that only yoga can facilitate!

Good luck, have fun, and NAMASTE!

Twenty Tips For Your First Bikram Yoga Class | elephant journal


Loyalty to Loyalty
Kundalini (which I really enjoyed) felt more about body and spirit while being emotionally therapeutic vs the others or maybe the difference was the teacher. I haven't been able to do it much lately

some of the others just feels like routines especially when you go a lot and get comfortable with the moves. Sometimes yoga to me is like running sometimes you don't know what you are capable of until you really push yourself and when you are committed to pushing beyond what you think are your limits you really feel empowered and positive. But depending on where you take classes it can just feel commercialized and sorta vain/pseudo-conscious.


Peace Love n Pretty Tings
Kundalini (which I really enjoyed) felt more about body and spirit while being emotionally therapeutic vs the others or maybe the difference was the teacher. I haven't been able to do it much lately

some of the others just feels like routines especially when you go a lot and get comfortable with the moves. Sometimes yoga to me is like running sometimes you don't know what you are capable of until you really push yourself and when you are committed to pushing beyond what you think are your limits you really feel empowered and positive. But depending on where you take classes it can just feel commercialized and sorta vain/pseudo-conscious.
Nicely said.
Up until this year I have been doing mainly Hatha and Vinyasa yoga. God, I think my first yoga video was an old Ali McGraw because there was not much out there period. lol But then I was motivated by flexibility and the physical benefits at the time.
I used to do it at home because there wasnt many studios where u could go to in the first place. But of course in the last few yrs there has been an explosion of studios, and to be honest most werent appealing.

I took a foundational hatha class at a smaller studio to correct alignment etc with a teacher. That was the best thing I've ever done in terms of helping me understand what my body was doing in certain poses and how and when to push myself. And started to get more of the mental/spiritual benefit out of it.

Although one of my friends had been bugging me for yrs to try hot yoga at her bigger studio I was never into it because it seemed faddish, uncomfortable due to the heat, etc. But it was the yoga teacher at the smaller one who suggested I try it but also told me which teacher to practice with. She is the only Indian girl at the bigger studio and her approach, style, integration of body/mind is what got me into Bikram yoga. I HATE being hot so to find the experience liberating & mentally rejeuvenating was a big surprise. lol It was huge actually because I had convinced myself I wouldnt last more than 5 mins in that hot room but I kept at it for the full 60 mins. It taught me to push myself in a good way.

I've taken classes with the other teachers at the studio but there is a funny disconnect that I dont enjoy at all. You have to kinda of block out the pomp & circumstance of some aspects of many yoga studios (in their current state) & focus on what you need to take out of it. I can be enough of a loner than I dont get too affected by the social or lack of social aspect to some studios.
So for me, the teacher and their personality/style/focus is really important. And there is benefits to having someone physically correct you in poses so you dont hurt yourself. I still practice at home but I do go to a studio a few times a week.


New member
Hi, great topic! I also want to try Yoga soon! Though, I'm not familiar with the different types suited for each one of us except for the one I read at Yoga Journal and A Guide to Yoga. I only know Yoga's benefits are better concentration and good posture.


New member
Yoga is a non specific term that alludes to a yoga that shows physical stances, about each sort of yoga class instructed in the West is hatha yoga, when a class is advertised as hatha, it by and large implies that you will get a delicate prologue to the most essential yoga stances, you presumably won't work up a perspiration in a hatha yoga class, yet you should wind up leaving class feeling longer, looser, and more loose...



New member
Crow Pose. Get into descending pooch position (palms squeezed into tangle, feet hip-width separated) and walk feet forward until the point that knees contact your arms. Twist your elbows, lift heels off floor, and lean knees against the outside of your upper arms. Keep toes on floor, abs drew in and legs squeezed against arms.