I went to Bikram Yoga La Jolla on an early, but beautiful Friday morning. The studio has easy street parking, cute and tranquil vibes, heat appropriate clothing for sale and an adorable pooch that greets you at the door. They also have cubbies and showers to wash the sweat off after class! The owner/receptionist/instructor met me with a smile and gave me tips to get through my first class.
“Don’t be scared”
“Listen to your body and If you need to take a break just lay down and take it slow”
“You’ll have fun!”
“You’ll see my mat set up in the studio, sit behind me so you can watch me and I can watch you too”
Bikram Yoga is a 90 minute class heated to 105 degrees. You are led through 26 postures and two breathing exercises (at the beginning and end) and the postures are held for a big longer.
I recommend stepping inside the heated studio 10 minutes before class starts so you can sivasana and acclimate to the 105 degree heat. Make sure to bring your mat, mat towel, lots of water and a hand towel for sweat. Sweat in your eye does not feel great.
The class starts with breathing exercises, moves into standing postures and then a series of floor postures. Each sequence is done two times in a row before moving onto the next. My favorite postures were the floor moves because in between most of them we got to lay in sivasana for a nice little break to catch your breath. The moves are all done slowly which definitely helps handle the heat and concentrate on form.
The slow pace was a big difference from the hot yoga class I tried before, which was 100+ degree heat with fast paced vinyasa flow yoga. That ended with my in dizziness and nearly fainting. Bikram yoga was much easier!
By the time we reached the end the instructor congratulated me to the class (I was the only one there for the first time) on how well I did and everyone clapped. She brought around cool lavender towels during our cool down vinyasa and did a short reading about love. She talked about how love has both good and bad aspects, but you can’t have one without the other and in the end it is all wonderful together. It was no coincidence that is was exactly what I needed to hear in that moment.
The Verdict: Bikram Yoga was not as scary or hard as I thought it was going to be. I would definitely do it again and would enjoy mastering the slower paced moves. I definitely recommend Bikram Yoga for beginner and expert Yogis in San Diego.