Being a cardio-addict, and unable to balance, I never thought I’d have the patience for yoga until I walked into Bikram Yoga of Ridgefield one year ago. A friend convinced me that Bikram was more challenging than other yoga practices: twenty-six postures and meditation in a heated room. Since I love a challenge, I went for it.
Physically some of the postures are difficult, and the room is warm, but the instructors control the heat, and they make sure that every student is comfortable enough to be able to challenge him/herself. Mentally, each Bikram class is punctuated with periods of meditation, improving focus and concentration.
After each ninety-minute session, I feel wonderful physically and am as close as I ever have been to peace of mind; however, there is also a huge spiritual benefit.
I recently returned from a trip to Ghana, where, despite widespread poverty, there is virtually no suicide or chronic depression. Everyone wore brightly-colored clothing, and many were dancing in the streets, especially in the poorest neighborhoods. When I asked my Ghanaian host how this was possible, he said, “Because we value family so much that no one goes hungry. If a family member is depressed, we sit with him/her until the depression lifts. We support each other one hundred percent.”
I have a great family, but the support I felt in Ghana was something I had never experienced before. I was not only welcomed; I was embraced.
This is the atmosphere at Maritza’s Johnson’s studio: Instructors and students work to better themselves but strive to support each other. Newcomers are embraced, and no one is judged.
Bikram Yoga of Ridgefield improves the body and mind, and, more importantly, elevates the spirit.