New to Bikram Yoga?
Bikram Yoga Manchester is thrilled that you have taken time to research the yoga and the studio. Of all the pages of this website, this one is the most important as it reflects the most frequently asked questions.
Take some time and thoroughly read through this page. If you still have any outstanding questions about Bikram yoga or this studio, please contact the studio directly.
Not all yoga is created alike
Some yoga classes are based on relaxation. The environment in these classes is more spa-like with low lighting or candle light, aromatherapy, relaxing music, gentle postures, etc. Bikram yoga does not fall under this category. Our focus is entirely on being challenged physically and mentally to achieve a powerful balance between the body and mind. Therefore, it is important for the prospective student to do their due diligence before attending any yoga class. If you need some guidance, please do not hesitate to contact Bikram Yoga Manchester.
Do you have the right stuff? Literally?
Bikram Yoga Manchester has towels and mats available to rent, $2.00 for towels and $1.00 for a mat. If you are doing the introductory special, then a mat is included for each of the 30 consecutive days, bring a towel or rent one. You are required to bring fluids into the studio with you. Water is available on site for purchase, but you are welcome to bring your own. You can also bring in your own towel and mat. Extra thick mats are very difficult to practice on because the studio is carpeted, so consider using a studio mat if you are unsure of your mat.
The heat is nothing to fear!
Bikram yoga is popular and feared for the same reason: the heat. The heat is noticeable, and definitely a challenge, but it is also the catalyst for all the benefits. Very few people have negative reactions to the heat. After the first few classes the average student begins to get accustomed to the temperature and focuses less on it. The fact that the room is hot is not a good reason to NOT try the yoga.
Prior experience in yoga is not necessary.
Prior experience in yoga or extensive knowledge of yoga postures is not necessary. Neither is a certain body type, age, size, or extensive sports history. Bikram Yoga is for the beginner. While the class is certainly challenging, it is designed to slowly immerse the new student into the practice over a length of time. Everyone will be bringing a different 'limitation' to the table thus making each experience unique.
The classes are 90 minutes in length.
Unlike classes at gyms or healthclubs, students in a Bikram yoga class are required to take the class in its entirety. Because of the nature and intention of the class, it is not an option to only take a portion of the class. Of course, there are times and situations that arise where it is necessary to leave a class early on ocassion. Bring this to the teacher's attention before class.
Bikram yoga will not interfere with your religious background.
It is a common misconception that doing yoga means adopting Hindu or Indian religious beliefs. It is hard to not believe this when yoga studios around the country and the world generously incorporate Hindu/Indian words, concepts, terminology, art, and even music into classes. While this may bring some people peace and comfort, it forces other people away from yoga. Yoga was born in ancient India, and thus large parts of it are inherently Indian. This does not mean, however, that by practicing Bikram yoga one is being converted to Hinduism or encouraged to adopt Indian or Hindu spiritual or religious beliefs. Bikram Yoga Manchester does not incorporate anything esoteric into its facility or classes.
"But I have NO flexibility - I can't even touch my toes".
The most common misconception people hold is that in order to practice yoga, one needs to be extraordinarily flexible. How flexible you think you are or are not will not govern the success of your practice.
Take your first several classes as close together as possible.
Putting too many days between classes will slow down your learning curve and make the first 5 or 10 classes more difficult than necessary. Try taking several classes before deciding whether or not this form of yoga is right for you. Finally, be prepared for the first several classes to be challenging!
Yoga is supposed to be fun!
Like anything else in life, you have to have fun and enjoy it in order to stick with it. Especially when that 'it' is a Bikram yoga class. There are aspects of the practice which are serious, like the discipline of the practice (see Studio Policies) or struggling with your body. Don't be afraid to have fun in class.
Come to class hydrated.
You don't need to go overboard with how much water you drink, but, if you typically drink very little water (but a lot of soda, juice, or other beverages) you may want to drink a couple large classes of water throughout the day.
Come to class on an empty stomach.
Try to avoid eating heavy, spicy or greasy meals the day of your first class. You may find it to be unpleasant once class starts. At the same time, do not fast the day of your class. Just like any workout, your body needs fuel to sustain it. Use good judgment on your food intake.
Wear comfortable clothing.
You will need to stay cool and also have a good range of motion. Typical men wear lined shorts, and women wear shorts with sports tops. Classes are done barefoot.
Bikram Yoga is about form, not about depth.
Depth comes with time and hard work. People do not come to class to show-off, judge others, or compete. Regardless of strength or flexibility, the students that work hard are the ones that get the most benefit.
Come to class without expectations and preconceived notions.
Understand that you have to be patient and have an open mind each time you come to class. Be open to suggestions from the teachers. Just like life, there will be 'good' days and 'bad' days.
All injuries and health issues need to be discussed with the teachers.
Your health and well being is Bikram Yoga Manchester's first and foremost priority. Please discuss any issues with us so that we can be aware of them, they will be kept confidential.