For a few years, I've been going to a studio about a half mile from my office that offers vinyasa (flow) yoga. It was one of the first fitness routines that I actually enjoyed--when I wasn't in the midst of cursing it or my aching body--and looked forward to on a regular basis. Since then I've been trying to entice some of my co-workers to join me at the noon sessions that they offer. With one person, who already knew some yoga, she loved the classes and joins me regularly. With a completely new to yoga person, it failed miserably. Recently another yoga novice showed some interest in joining us, and I didn't want her to hate yoga too...so....
I sent around an email at work, trying to gauge the interest in having a few beginners group yoga classes during lunch. Fantastically, about 10 folks were interested, so I was able to book a few classes with my favorite yoga instructor, Eric, at a fairly reasonably per person price.
Yesterday was our first class, and it went pretty well. I think a lot of people were pretty shocked at how hard we worked--especially when I reported the calories burned from my heart rate monitor at 400 cal/hour. Which is pretty fun, since what we did in an hour for this class compares with the first 15 minutes of Eric's regular class. (Sadly, the calories burned won't multiply by 4...but even so I usually burn about 500 in an hour in the advanced class, and most of it is in the aerobic range. Not bad for yoga. Vinyasa rocks!)
Taking a yoga basics class was also great encouragement for me. In addition to reminding me of the proper way to do poses, it also really reminded me of how far I've gotten in my own practice over the last few years. I vividly remember my first classes and how crazy hard it was to hold those deceptively easy looking strength poses. Maybe it will also remind me not to be so despondent when I have a hard time holding the crazy poses that I'm trying now. I must remind myself to remember this lesson during the intense 2 hour hot yoga class I'll be taking on Saturday. :)