I’ve been doing yoga now for coming two years now and can pop a headstand at the drop of a hat, never thought that’s something I’d be able to do. Last night I tried Bikram yoga. I’ve tried Hatha, Vinyasa, Ashtanga, Nidra and Acro, but the particular class I went to last night in Manchester was by a country mile the worst class I’ve ever been to. Mats in fixed positions too close together so you’re hitting the person next to you. No talking. No drinking water unless permission is given. No standing next to the friend you’ve come in with so you don’t chat. An instructor who talked at speed non stop for 90 minutes, all direction and no explanation and very little engagement. Drill instructor style do what you’re told, not what you’re comfortable with. Don’t wipe the sweat off your face, it’s there for a reason. Might as well call it McDonalds Yoga. Rat Race Yoga. Battery Chickens Yoga. I’m learning myself, but I’m pretty sure the class I went to wasn’t yoga.
Visiting the ‘Om’ yoga show last week to get a new mat it’s clear yoga is big, and there’s a broad church of interpretation. From the fitness fanatics at one end to the spiritual healing and well being gurus at the other. I probably sit somewhere in the middle. Yoga is what you get out of it.