Credits to bikramyogavancouver.com for photo
The eagle pose is a great pose to practice as it is the only posture in the series that opens up 14 of the largest joints in your body.
Benefits of eagle pose:
- Improves flexibility in the hips,knees, ankles and the rest of your joints.
- Supplies fresh blood to the reproductive system and sex organs, plus the kidneys and helps clear up reproductive problems
Usually you are supposed to put your palms together like in the picture above, but I choose to interlock my fingers like in a prayer instead as it is easier for me. I always experience a deep feeling of compression when wrapping one leg around the other.
Sometimes, losing your balance is inevitable as you struggle to balance all your weight on one leg but it sure feels good when you do it correctly. It is usually after this pose that you are allowed to drink your first sip of water so hang in there!
The third pose of Bikram Yoga, it requires a lot of balance really and its pretty funny when you can hear knees creaking when everyone is slowing going moving down while trying to balance.
Benefits of this pose:
- tones and shapes your legs
- heals chronically cold feet
- helps relieve rheumatism and arthritis in the legs, cures slipped discs and other spinal problems.
- strengthens and tones the upper arm, abdomen and shoulders
My personal take:
When I first started, I couldn’t lift my hands straight for the whole duration of the pose. it felt like lead.
Now, it feels like the most natural thing to do. The keep your back straight while bending your knee stance is a little harder as all your body weight needs to fall on your heels and the temptation to lean forward to counter the pose is there.
My second least favourite pose of them all. Am so glad it is the second one so I can get it over and done with.
Don’t get me wrong, I still do it to the best of my ability but I don’t like bending my torso to the side. When you look at the mirror, everyone is at different levels of bending. Some more deeply, the others like me halfway there. No wonder they call it the half moon pose as we resemble a crescent.
Photo from bikramyogawintergarden.com
It looks easier in the photos but believe me it ain’t!
Benefits of this pose:
- Strengthens every muscles in the body’s core, esp the abdomen
- Increases the flexibility of the spine, promotes proper kidney function, and helps to cure enlargement of the liver and spine
- It also helps firm and trim the waistline, hips, abdomen, buttocks and thighs.
My personal take:
Me no like! But that’s just me. It makes me stretch so much which is good for me I know. Funny how you don’t like things that are good for you sometimes.
Everyone practising will have their most and least favourite pose. It is a good stretch though and bending down, holding my body as tightly as I can together like a Japanese ham sandwich (figure 3 ) does wonders for my hamstring which are seriously tight and unflexible. I need to stretch more!
This is the first posture of Bikram yoga. It is called the standing deep breathing / Pranayama posture.
If you think that it is quite a mouthful saying it, wait till you come to the other postures. It is the first breathing exercise of which the second one will be done at the end of the class. My instructor says that it will set up your body to do the rest of the poses as this exercise helps you expand your lungs and take in more oxygen.
The benefits of this pose are:
1. good for the lungs and respiratory system (prevents shortness of breath, bronchitis etc.)
2. helps lung reach their maximum expansion capacity
3. increases circulation of oygenated blood throughout the body
4. Loosens frozen/tight shoulders
5. Relieves irritability and relaxes the mind
When doing this pose, it does help me take in more oxygen although my shoulders are still quite stiff..I can feel my lungs expanding BUT only if I make the effort to completely inhale and exhale correctly. Some lazy days, I just go through the motions. Terrible, I know…
Some people esp beginners start sweating at this stage. Sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t. Really depends on the number of people in the room are stealing my oxygen , thus making me inhale more! lol!
Yesterday’s Bikram was a massacre! Humidity levels were at a high and I have not had such a practice and detox for such a long time.
Although I felt totally stifled at times, my neck and back definitely felt the benefits of it today. And as we all know that yours truly have injured her leg, there are not much workouts, save for swimming (which I am not a big fan of, I look like I am drowning more than I am swimming) that I can do without aggravating it. So really, Bikram rocks.
Check one of my favorite poses out, only because I can do this fairly well, haha (though not like the lady in the video though, I think she is made of rubber)
Pose 6. Dandayamana-Bibhaktapada-Janushirasana
Standing Bow Pulling Pose
Benefits of this pose: Acts as a tourniquet,transfers criculation from one side of the body to the other side
circulates fresh blood to each internal organ and glands to keep them healthy
Improves balance, strengthens lower spine
Am so looking forward to my first run on Friday. After a long 2 weeks of being out of action, my itch for action is killing me!
I hope my stamina has not dropped drastically though. The first run after a long break is always the hardest as you try to find your pace again.
What a week. A lackadaisacal week that is. For sports.
I totally slacked off training. And guess what? I totally loved it. ( Feels a tad guilty)
After the previous week of intense Bikraming as I call it ( I practise Bikram Yoga for those for don’t know), I felt my muscles calling out to me to stop torturing them.
Anyway, I was feeling pretty lazy so what the heck. One week of not doing any exercise will kill no one.
Am back to my routine this week though, with a short 5k run thrown in yesterday. That hardly countered the brunch I had that afternoon.
The run was so so, far from my personal best but I still managed to hit the under 30min mark so it’s not that bad.
Shall step it up a notch this week though but nothing of too much vigor.
It is my birthday week after all 🙂
* The author was pretty productive in other matters which shall not be disclosed (most of it entailed retail therapy and gastronomic delights though)
Updating this via mobile as I am too comfy in lying in bed to turn my laptop on.
So I finally did what I set out to do.
A Bikram yoga session everyday for 5 days straight. Yahoo!
But to be honest, by the 4th and 5th lesson, I took it really slow.
Today was extremely hot as the sun was setting and it didn’t help that the rays were penetrating through the window panes. ( I know which spot not to choose now)
I like to think that after these sessions, I am more limber and toned but i know I have to maintain it and not get complacent.
The funny thing though is that I have not lost any weight. Dang it. It must be muscle I hope.
Ping! My watsapp sounded. With my eyes still closed, I knew it was my best friend giving me a reminder text to to go for Day 4 of my Bikram Yoga session.
“Yes yes, I am up already lah. ” I replied.
Surprisingly, it felt much easier than I thought to psyche myself to go. I am pretty sure that the fact that I was going for a buffet lunch after was the reason.
Banking in the calories I call it.
It was a moderately intense session; I definitely did not work as hard as I did yesterday evening. But then again that was only because Johnny (my instructor) had his hawk’s eyes on us to make sure we didn’t slack throughout the poses.
“Higher, higher , higher” I can still hear his voice.
Anyway, I reckon that with every session of Bikram yoga, I burnt an estimate of 400kcal.
Boy was I wrong, I burnt an insane amount of 825kcal!!
That is just crazy, I would have to run around 15km to get the same results.
Use this to calculate how much you burn during Bikram – Calorie calculator for bikram yoga