Sunday, November 22, 2009

Tough Crowd.

Tracy and I are, as she always says, a tough crowd. What she means is that we have high standards for certain things and are hard to please. This is especially true for things that involve athletics and those who claim high standards.I, we, know what we know and aren't going to pretend otherwise. Sorry.
This is very true for Bikrams yoga, and although I am a total beginner( less than a year and half practice) one of the things that really drew me( draws me) to it is that there is a "dialogue" that spells out, completely and specifically not only what the exact sequence of postures are, but exactly how long each one is to be held, how they should be gotten into, out of and the rest periods between postures.A routine. Each class is supposed to be exactly the same, the difference being what YOU bring to it each day. Works great for those with OCD,lol.And people who like to measure themselves against very specific standards. It's nice to know exactly what's expected of you in the workout.
When they tell you a pose is going to be one minute, and they want you to basically pass out as you cross the finish line( metaphorically) but CONSISTENTLY have you in those postures for numerous varieties of time( rarely the exact minute) it gets frustrating. You know( it's in the book) that each pose should be a specific length of time and you when they won't take the class there it can drive you nuts.
Tracy has been doing a real practice for three solid years and counts very well in her poses; she knows when a 60 second pose is 90 seconds. And since she is actually doing the postures to their full expression (as opposed to me, who is, well just trying to survive and get CLOSE to the full expression) it ain't nice when you are sprinting and they constantly move the finish line.
But when they overdo the first 2/3's of the class because they are, well, just talking to much, adding way too much into the 'dialogue' instead of just giving the cues perfectly and pulling us into the postures, helping us build a rythym, they are stealing from the last 1/3 of the class and that ticks me off.And she aint happy either.
We are also supposed to get a 'savasana'( corpse pose) between each of the last 1/3 postures but that gets skipped fast when they are running behind( next class is waiting...) and they have to 'makeup' for it.
which they never do and didn't today. They went 12 minutes over the 90 minute class with a jumble of work intervals none of which we knew were coming. Add in being pretty gassed from yesterdays double workout and I wasnt a happy camper.Being stuck in that sauna when you are dying is, as you might guess, no fun at all.So I especially wasnt happy as they shorted us in corpse poses big time. 12 minutes doesnt sound like much, but after 90 minutes in a crowded sauna working yourself cardiovascularly and muscular to your limit, it can feel like an eternity.

Now corpse pose looks to be just resting, and it is. BUT it is crucial to the way Bikrams system works; because after you constrict the blood,and the organs,with the static poses you are supposed to relax completely and really let the blood perfuse back into the area you just trained. Skip this and the whole system breaks down. Like doing Hardstyle KB work aerobically.Just aint the same thing.If you can't breathe at all its way hard to go hard. You have to gear down.
Like I said, tough crowd.But I have high expectations from fitness professionals in all walks.Especially Master Instructors.
I didnt even stay a second for the final savasana.Couldnt do it.
So got up after the final breathing work and got out of there. not a great yoga mindset but hey, can't you just stick with the dialgoue ? And, as a professional: FINISH THE CLASS ON TIME? I know I wouldnt be let into class if I came 10 minutes late; respect my time and energy as well.
Do it right. Be a pro.
Just say the dialogue and when it's time for savasana be quiet and let us quiet our minds.I dont want a lecture about being able to quiet the mind. Let us hear the silence.
It really makes me appreciate the great instructors that ARE there. They do it right and it's so obvious.
OK, rant over,calm blue ocean, calm blue

I need a nap :))


Boris T. said...

I hear what your saying about the unnecessary dialog. Many fitness professionals feel the need to fill the air with technical jargon and end up eating up the clients time.

Or worse yet the people who are afraid of silence and feel the need to fill the air with any noise to compensate.

Mark Reifkind said...


exactly. and this is much worse when the dialogue and silence periods are spelled out specifically in their training. it's a script they are supposed to follow. some people just love the sound of their voice.