In my quest to become an avid yogi, I am trying styles and classes I have previously ignored. Like hot yoga. Because who in their right mind would want to exercise in tiny pants? Unless they are ridiculously fit and incredibly confident, maybe. I am neither.
But once I had gotten my head around the benefits of hot yoga, I was (almost) sold.
Hot yoga is a little less hot than the better-known Bikram yoga. During hot yoga, the room isn’t only heated, but FAR infrared waves are used to warm the body, rather than the air around you. FAR infrared has amazing detox proficiencies; during a hot yoga class you sweat out toxins, increase your metabolism and heart rate for a better cardiovascular workout and improved blood circulation. The gentle heat means that your ability to stretch is greater and you can go deeper into various positions.
So far so good.
What has put me off any form of hot yoga in the past was the whole ‘bending over in knickers’ issue. Because you sweat quite a lot, everybody works out in the tiniest outfit possible. Or so I was told. The lady in the shop was quite adamant that I’d be glad to wear little more than shorts that would fit my 4yo and a tiny vest top. It would be sooo hot, and everybody else would show up in the same attire. More or less assured I trotted off to my first hot yoga class last Monday. I was so nervous, I forgot to take my trainers off before entering the changing rooms. Off to a bad start and grounds for disapproving stares. Leaving your shoes on in a yoga temple is a pretty rooky mistake. Did I mention I was nervous?
I made my way into the studio a couple of minutes earlier to secure a space in the last row (really no need to shove my barely clad bum into anyone’s face) as I watched slightly aghast as the room filled up. 35 people, four of them in shorts. Two of those were the two only male students, one of them another female pupil (of the ridiculous and incredible kind, see above) and one of them me, wobbly inside and out. Making a mental note to ignore that shop in the future, I got on my feet, closed my eyes and concentrated on my breath. The great thing about yoga – hot or not – is that you are very much centred within yourself. In the end, it didn’t matter what I was wearing and if my thighs wriggled or not. Nobody noticed. The best thing: I didn’t notice. I had an amazing first class with Jennifer de Lucry at triyoga Chelsea. Jennifer has an amazing, positive energy. She’s like sunshine entering the room.
Will I be back? Most definitely. After all, I paid 40 quid for a tiny pair of shorts. I’ll stick to the last row though. 😉
triyoga Chelsea, 372 King’s Road, London, SW3 5UZ