I’ve done yoga probably a total of 10-12 times in my life in an effort to shake things up a bit. While most health and fitness gurus tend to swear by it, I always think it’s just “alright.” I guess I’m not much of a slow and steady workout kinda girl. Standing still with one leg in the air trying hard not to fall over, while a really soft spoken dude says “let’s all take a beaaauuuuuttifffulll inhale,” often makes me want to put my leg down, laugh (or cry?), and leave to go for a run.
Last weekend, while out with Dave’s coworker and his girlfriend, her and I starting talking over a cocktail and she said “we should do a yoga class together!”. Being that it’s been almost a year since I last went to a class, and we were having such a fun night together, I figured I’d give it a shot. “Totally!” I told her. And we made a date for this weekend. Well, today was date time. At 2pm we met at the Be Yoga in Austin for an hour and half long session of yogi-ness. Did I mention that the studio is across the street from my apartment building? It doesn’t get more convenient than that.
The studio is about the size of a large living room, with the front wall made completely of windows that overlook my street (and my balcony, from which I’ve often watched classes… which makes me creepy). Inside, they had yoga mats to borrow, and everyone left their shoes and jackets hanging out on the bench at the front. There was Bob Marley music playing the background as I scrambled to sit down and join the already in-session class. Once we started, I realized this wasn’t going to be like the basic yoga class that I got so accustomed to at Yoga To The People in NYC–this guy went into very complex poses that left my wavering side to side, and praying for relief multiple times.
The instructor had the classic yogi soothe voice goin’ on, and took us into some poses and breathing exercises that I’ve never been challenged with before. For example, kneeling on all fours in table pose, breathing in and out extremely fast while holding your core very tight–it was like doing crunches with just your own breath (but we looked like panting cats). Other poses, including holding a plank position and bringing your knee up to your opposite elbow, were also core killers. Those are always my favorite part of yoga class. Beyond that, I looked around in wonderment at others’ abilities to sit on one foot with their heel down, and stared (intermittently when she wasn’t looking. creep-o move #2) at the super-stretchy chick next to me bend her legs like a rubber band. How did she do that?
At the end of the class, while in savasana (laying on your back and just breathing; total zen) the instructor came around to each of us and “adjusted” our posture. He pulled my legs forward to stretch my lower back, and rotated my shoulders so that they touched the floor. It felt amazing. This studio is completely donation based, which is awesome and rare. That means that if you want to drop $5 or $15 for their services, it’s your call, and no one’s judging. I dropped in a $10, and walked back across the street to my apartment. If I was a yogi, I could see how this small, intimate studio really gives each person a chance to practice more deeply for great price, but for me, if I could go just the last ten minutes of “adjustments,” I would. But that’s just me and yoga–we have a rocky relationship.
Do you yoga?