Vacation Yoga – Piecing It Together

When I am at home, I practice Bikram Yoga regularly, and when I am away, I try to find a Bikram studio in the area so I can maintain my practice. But many times there is not a studio nearby, or there just isn’t time for a 90-minute class. So what do I do? Whatever I can.

I was recently out of town for a few weeks, with no Bikram Yoga studio for miles around. Undeterred, I pieced together a practice from the available options — resort yoga classes, Pilates classes and Sun Salutations outside on the deck. The variety provided a nice break from the rigors of Bikram Yoga and gave me a few tricks I can bring back to my regular practice.

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Resort yoga can be hit or miss, but I was lucky — the teacher was excellent. I enjoy a good flow class, and this one hit all the highlights — forward folds, hip openers, Warriors, Triangles, Bridges, and more. It was a challenging class — I don’t think I have ever held Goddess pose for that long — but the teacher offered modifications to take the class up or down depending on your experience level and desire that day. My daughter attended the classes with me — I was impressed with her wheel pose — and we were both happy. As was my sister who has just started practicing.

Pilates is hard! I tried Pilates a few years back, but it didn’t stick. I remember it feeling a lot like calisthenics, which I didn’t enjoy. But I decided to try it again anyway. This teacher spent a lot of time explaining the purpose of the exercises and the proper form. It still felt a little bit like gym-class, but I went back several times for the challenge and for the workout.

My core always ached after class, which surprised me. I must be a bit lazy with my core during my Bikram practice. I will need to work on that. On the other hand, I was pleased with my arm strength and balance, which I owe entirely to my Bikram Yoga practice.

Some days I didn’t feel like going to class at all and simply did Sun Salutations outside on the deck. I led myself through 5 or 6 rotations and called it a day. Sadly, I couldn’t convince anyone in my family to do them with me.

Taking a holiday from Bikram Yoga turned out to be a good thing. I could challenge myself with other forms of yoga, try related disciplines, and identify some areas that need more work. I can now return to Bikram Yoga refreshed, just like from any good vacation.

Fellow yogis, how do you maintain your yoga practice when you are away?

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6 thoughts on “Vacation Yoga – Piecing It Together

  1. I am always in awe of people who practise Yoga regularly. It is something that I know is so beneficial to mind and body but I have never been able to stick with it for some reason. Not limber enough? Silly really because I won’t be if I don’t do it! Holidays are hard on exercise routines – I always try to find ways to keep mine going too but not always easy.

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  2. Hi Shari. My husband and I recently returned to yoga after a long spell but we are much more into it for the “meditation” than the exercise. Just learning to breathe and stretch our muscles are our primary goals. That’s the nice thing about yoga, it fills whatever need you need. ~Kathy

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