"Youíre never too old, never too bad, never too late and never too sick
to start from the scratch once again.Ē
- Bikram Choudhury, founder Bikram Yoga
Our mission is to: Improve clients' health, both mentally and physically, through the practice of Bikram's highly effective yoga, in a welcoming and friendly environment.
We are committed to providing you with quality instruction of Bikramís beginning yoga course in a safe and healthy environment. Nothing has been added to or taken away from this tremendous sequence so you can receive maximum benefit. All teachers have completed Bikramís Teacher Training course, an intensive training led by Bikram & Rajashree Choudhury and several senior staff members of the Bikram Yoga College of India. In addition to this initial training course, all teachers are required to attend a recertification seminar with Bikram every three years in order to remain a Bikram Yoga teacher in good standing.
Spring 2007What brought you to your first class?
Tyler Spatz. It was our first and last date.What kept bringing you back?
Inspiring teachersDo you still have tough classes? How do you get through them?
Yes! Cry a little bit, then laugh at myself. Never let your demons get the best of you!How did you know you wanted to be a teacher?
After my first class, I was chatting to some other students. I was still in shock and amazement and I remember thinking "This is going to change my life." I knew then that I wanted to teach one day.What's your favorite Bikram saying?
The brightest light is under the darkest lamp.What do you do when you're not teaching?
Make food, travel long ways to multiple Bikram studios, go to art school, practice this wonderful yoga each day!What's your favorite Brooklyn hangout?
Bikram Yoga Bay Ridge! If you know anywhere better, let me know!What is your advice for new students?
Breathe, be positive, listen carefully, and hydrate before class.What's the best thing about Bikram Yoga?
The way it makes you feel!
I started in July 2002 at Bikram Yoga Minneapolis.What brought you to your first class?
I was training for my 10th marathon (and what turned out to be my last!) and my knees were suffering from bursitis. The studio was on my bike route home from work and I thought I'd give it a try to help my marathon training.What kept bringing you back?
At first, nothing! I didn't come back after my first class! I don't think I enjoyed it. It just seemed weird. I came back because I knew my class card was expiring (they have no intro week at BYM and so I bought a 5 class card at the start) and I wanted to use my classes. Then I went to Sydney, Australia to run the marathon and when I came back I had one class left on my card so I came in and used it. Something must have started clicking because I bought a 10 class card after that and within a month I think I was on the monthly unlimited and practising 5-6 times a week. Within a year I wasn't running anymore and only doing Bikram Yoga. It had taken a while but I knew this was breaking down stuff and opening me up like no other healing modality I'd encountered.Do you still have tough classes? How do you get through them?
Oh boy, do I ever! I get dizzy a lot and I overheat easily. After 8 years I've learned that the dizziness is exacerbated by rainy weather, my diet in the previous 12 hours and my emotional state. I have to be hydrated before class else I won't set foot in the room. I put 15-20 Elete drops in a big bottle of water and drink that in the 90 minutes before I take class. That helps tremendously. Also I try to avoid drinking water during class until we're out of Spine Strengthening series and only have about 20 minutes to go. I try to avoid sugar in the 12 hours leading up to class (good luck with that!) FInally if I know it's going to be a really tough class I tell the instructor (or anybody who will listen!) and just by telling someone it seems to help lessen the severity of the class that follows.How did you know you wanted to be a teacher?
I don't think I did. One of our senior New York teachers, Georgia Ballagian, told me I should do it. I was tired of working for a big multinational company and being unhappy. The combination of being nudged by one of Bikram's senior teachers and being miserable in my job was what did it. It was sort-of unconscious on my part!What's your favorite Bikram saying?
Oh this is the easiest question so far! Hands-down without question my favourite Bikram saying is "The darkest place in the world is underneath the lamp".What do you do when you're not teaching?
I come up with reasons why I shouldn't practice Yoga today.What do you like best about Bay Ridge?
My bathroom. It has an unobstructed breathtaking view of the Verrazano Narrows Bridge. I'm the cleanest kid in the neighbourhood because I'm always in the shower!What is your advice for new students?
1. Have fun. 2. Breathe. 3. Come back.What's the best thing about Bikram Yoga?
It is a powerful agent for change. The most powerful I've ever encountered.What else should we know about you?
I don't like eggplant parmesan. Am I still allowed to live in Bay Ridge?
In July of 2009, I discovered Bikram Yoga. My twin sister brought me to my first class at Bikram Yoga Nashua. I can't say that I was hooked right from the start.
I showed up wearing long pants and a baggy t-shirt that were soaked through in a matter of minutes. I was distracted by the uncomfortable clinging clothing, the bunching of my towel under my feet, the people in the front row who seemed to be effortlessly executing the postures. It was really a challenge for me, and I wasn't quite convinced that sweating and struggling in a hot room for 90 minutes was something I wanted to continue to subject myself to. I couldn't deny that pull that brought me back though. After class, I felt amazing; my body was lighter, my breath way deeper, my mind was quiet.
I decided to keep practicing, or rather my body decided for me. I'd roll out of bed and be in the car on the way to the studio as if on auto pilot. I'd be signing in at the front desk before I even stopped to think, am I sure I want to do this? After a few months I knew I wanted to teach.
I went to Las Vegas for Teacher Training Spring 2010. I began to teach in Nashua, NH and then branched out to different Bikram studios throughout New England. In the fall of 2011, I went to Mexico and taught there, learning the dialogue in Spanish. And finally, I found my way to New York. It's been quite the trip, and really that's what this yoga is all about, the journey.. knowing how far you've come, accepting where you're at now, and discovering how much more you can grow. This practice has had such a positive impact on my life, and I am so grateful for the opportunity to share what I've learned and to continue learning every time I walk into the hot room. :)
My first class was 10 years ago, but being a poor college student I didn't have enough time or money to dedicate myself to a regular practice until 2004.What brought you to your first class?
I had been doing all sorts of exercise for weight loss, and nothing seemed to be doing the trick. After my first class, I knew I had found something profound and special. I was hooked.What kept bringing you back?
I'm not so sure, cause each class was so hard and I could hardly get through my classes without leaving the room for the first few years. I think it was the constant challenge and just the fact that I felt so good even if I didn't have a "good" class..Do you still have tough classes? How do you get through them?
OF COURSE I still have tough classes. Almost every class is tough! I just focus on breathing and listening to the instructor, and even after 10 years I listen to my body. I've never been too proud to sit out of a posture every once in a while.How did you know you wanted to be a teacher?
I knew that if I wanted to lose weight and keep it off, I would have to dedicate my life to fitness. I knew after my first class I wanted to teach.What's your favorite Bikram saying?
There are so many! "99% right is 100% wrong" and "I don't sell cheesecake." Don't make me pick one!What do you do when you're not teaching?
Practice yoga, travel the world, and throw peanuts at people.What do you like best about Bay Ridge?
Finally getting off the subway!What is your advice for new students?
Don't give up, just keep coming back even if it remains difficult for a while. There's no such thing as a bad class, except for the one you don't come to! IT's never so bad that it can't be fixed with Bikram.What's the best thing about Bikram Yoga?
The mental focus and clarity one recieves from it. In only 90 minutes, good things come in small packages.
Spring 2005, I think...What brought you to your first class?
My wife brought me, but I honestly can't remember how she convinced me to go. Must have been a bribe...What kept bringing you back?
Initially, nothing did. I felt right away that it was great for my body, but I really hated the heat. That kept me from forming a regular practice for a little while.Do you still have tough classes? How do you get through them?
Yes, all the time. For a long time (and sometimes still) I would try to figure out what was making it tough. Was it what I ate earlier? Did I not drink enough? Is it a full moon (really don't want the transformation during yoga)? Now I just remind myself to breathe and take the whole class one posture at a time. No expectations!How did you know you wanted to be a teacher?
There was no AHHA! moment... I had been thinking about it for almost a year before finally deciding. I wish I could point to something that pushed me over the edge. At some point I just knew that I should go to teacher training and help spread the yoga.What's your favorite Bikram saying?
"If anyone can steal your peace, you're the loser!" What a different world it would be if no one let anyone else steal their peace!What do you do when you're not teaching?
I still do contract software development sometimes and work on my own software projects.What's your favorite Brooklyn hangout? or What do you like best about Bay Ridge?
Besides the studio? I like walking my dog, Violet, around different blocks, admiring the crazy Bay Ridge architecture. I also love some food spots in Bay Ridge. The home fries at Pegasus are awesome!What is your advice for new students?
Stay calm and breathe throughout class. Also, be ok with not being a super yogi/yogini. People spend years practicing this yoga and still struggle. It takes time, sometimes lots of it. Just stick with it, and you'll see changes.What's the best thing about Bikram Yoga?
It really helps with my anxiety. There are days where my mind is going crazy and I think "What is wrong with me?". Then I realize that I haven't taken class yet, and that's the problem.What else should we know about you?
I make a mean eggplant parm.
I took my first Bikram class in a studio in Santa Fe, New Mexico in the fall of 2003.What brought you to your first class?
I went to my first class because I had already been practicing by myself in my little geo-dome for about two years.What kept bringing you back?
I keep coming back because I love how good I felt! I love sweating, I love being strong, I love being flexible. My mind was still for 90 minutes at a time. I knew right away that I could practice for the rest of my life.Do you still have tough classes? How do you get through them?
I always have tough classes. Isn't that what I paid for? There are a few things that get me through my really tough classes. I focus on my breathing and the words of the teacher. If I am focused on what I am doing in the moment I have no time to enage in the crazy thoughts my mind has. "oh it's hot, I can't do this, I feel sick, why is the teacher so hard, why didn't I drink enough water, my elbow itches" I also think of my students. I don't want my students to give up, so I won't give up. I am strong for them, i try to be a good example. I give my energy to the people around me in class so they can keep going too. I know that everytime I do something that is more than I think I can handle I become a better person.How did you know you wanted to be a teacher?
I just knew I was going to teach Bikram yoga. Then I met Bikram at a seminar and he asked me when I was going to come out to teacher training. Easy choice.What's your favorite Bikram saying?
My favorite Bikram saying, so hard to decide, " you have nothing to lose because you had nothing to begin with"What do you do when you're not teaching?
What don't I do when I am not teaching? I am currently into swimming for Team New York Aquatics and taking pilates lessons. I love reading, being with my family and listening to punk rock music on the subway.What do you like best about Bay Ridge?
My favorite Bay Ridge hangout is Bikram Yoga Bay Ridge. I get to do advanced with Nancy and Caroline on a regular basis. It is awesome.What is your advice for new students?
Come as much as possible. Consistancy is the key. Take care of yourself. The class won't change, you have to change. Lock your knee.What's the best thing about Bikram Yoga?
The best thing about Bikram yoga is how it makes you be you.
2001What brought you to your first class?
I was looking for an alternative to weight lifting.What kept bringing you back?
The challenge and the idea that the yoga was a practice, and not a perfect.Do you still have tough classes? How do you get through them?
To this day, I have tough classes. I get through by not putting pressure on myself to perform.How did you know you wanted to be a teacher?
Being that from my first class I could immediately feel this yoga working, I knew I wanted to show others.What's your favorite Bikram saying?
You have nothing to lose because you never had anything to begin with.What do you do when you're not teaching?
I'm a NYC firefighter, I go to a lot of concerts, and I practice the yoga.What are your favorite places in Brooklyn?
Gorilla Coffee in Park Slope (the red eye is super powerful), the firehouse, all the food in Bay Ridge.What is your advice for new students?
It exposes your strengths and weaknesses and gives you the opportunity to make your weaknesses your strengths.
March 2009What brought you to your first class?
I wanted to do something for myself.What kept bringing you back?
The sense of peace and accomplishment I felt after each and every class.Do you still have tough classes? How do you get through them?
I have tough classes all the time. I get through them, because I love to challenge myself and see that I can go beyond what I thought was possible.How did you know you wanted to be a teacher?
As soon as I started practicing regularly, I discovered how powerful this yoga was. It was then that I knew that I would definitely someday become a teacher and pay it forward.What's your favorite Bikram saying?
"The most important person in your life is you"What do you do when you're not teaching?
I practice the yoga, hang out with friends, and I devote most of my time to my family; especially my two absolutely wonderful children.What are your favorite places in Brooklyn?
My favorite Brooklyn hangout is actually my home. It can be crazy and chaotic at times, but it's always filled with much love and happiness.What is your advice for new students?
The results, both physically and mentally.What else should we know about you?
This yoga has had a profound affect on my life. After having my children, I lost myself in my role as a mother.Through practicing and teaching the yoga, I've become so much more compassionate, patient, and present with my children. We have so much fun; I value and cherish the time we spend together. We, as human beings have the potential to be and do anything we want; the possibilities are endless. Bikram yoga helped me see that. It's truly amazing!
Feb 2005. In Los Angeles, CAWhat brought you to your first class?
My friend, a fellow high school Math teacher, had been going to Bikram Yoga and I had been going to a different yoga studio. So, we tried out each others' studios and I couldn't believe how different Bikram Yoga felt -- the heat was truly amazing.What kept bringing you back?
Well, to be honest it really wasn't love at first class for me. It was SO HARD! But, somewhere inside I knew that it was good for me; it was what I needed. So, I kept dragging myself back into the hot room. Once I started seeing my body shape change, and feeling better about myself, I developed a more regular practice and was hooked.Do you still have tough classes? How do you get through them?
Of course I still have tough classes! Often I'm just dying inside! When I am having a hard time, I talk to myself: "I'm going to be okay." "Everything is going to be just fine." "I'm not really dying." "I can breathe." "There's plenty of air in the room." Some combination of those usually gets me through class. I try to avoid thinking things like "Why did you have to eat that pizza?" "Why doesn't the teacher just open the door?" "Isn't there some emergency in the lobby? I should really leave the room to check on it." You know, my mind likes to play tricks on me just like anyone else's. My determination to finish class and stay strong has greatly improved over time and practice. I have learned that I'm usually much stronger than I'd like to give myself credit for -- I can choose to keep going, to not give up.How did you know you wanted to be a teacher?
I was a stressed out Math teacher, and my daily yoga class after school was the best part of my day. I didn't ever want to stop doing this yoga -- it was making me a much better person. So, I decided to make a big commitment to it, and become a Bikram Yoga teacher.What's your favorite Bikram saying?
"Take it easy, honey. KILL YOURSELF!"What do you do when you're not teaching?
I'm rarely allowed outside of Bay Ridge. ;) BUT, when I do have some free time, I like to hang out with my little pup, and my little nephew... they remind me that there's more to life than just work work work. (Although, I do enjoy my work, it's just a bit much sometimes!)What's your favorite Brooklyn hangout?
Bikram Yoga Bay Ridge, of course! (Did you read my response to the previous question?!?)What is your advice for new students?
The results -- it works, plain and simple. Whatever you need, you can get here.What else should we know about you?
I have received more from this yoga than I ever imagined possible. I grew up the sickly asthmatic kid who didn't have to participate in gym class... I feel like I have a new set of lungs, a new spine, and best of all a new positive outlook on life (for the most part, you know, I'm still human.) It's truly amazing.
March of 2009, but have been consistently practicing since my first 30 day challenge in October 2009.What brought you to your first class?
The winter led to a lack of consistent exercise as I generally would run out doors and I was dealing with a few very stressful clients at the time. I was looking for something other then the gym that could benefit my mind, body and soul.What kept bringing you back?
At first it was a struggle. I live in Staten Island and was traveling a lot so I would come sparingly, but after doing my 1st 30 day challenge I really saw the results of practicing this yoga. I learned that I could show up for myself and my practice regardless of the demands of my clients and family. I felt the best I have in a long time, both physically and mentally. From that point I couldn't imagine a day without Bikram included in it.Do you still have tough classes? How do you get through them?
All the time! I try to stay as focused as possible. Whatever is causing the issues, my mind is generally the main culprit intensifying the feeling. So if I am focused on the teacher, the words, my breathe and go moment by moment it tends to pass or at least I get through :)How did you know you wanted to be a teacher?
From the time I started a consistent practice I couldn't imagine a day without Bikram in my life. To teach this yoga ensures my commitment to the practice as well as to learn about it on another level. Additionally, I am firm believer in giving back what was given to me and by becoming a teacher I can do so.What's your favorite Bikram saying?
"Pain kills the Pain" I came in with a lot of old injuries from a car accident and playing soccer for so long. It's typical in our society to feel pain and instantaneously back away, but I learned that if you work through it, it does gets better.What do you do when you're not teaching?
Traveling, spending time with my family and friends and when busy love planning events.What are your favorite places in Brooklyn?
BYBR :)What is your advice for new students?
I LOVE the heat as it has always been so calming and centers me. Initially, I thought I wouldn't be able to practice too often because it would be the same class every day, but it's not. Everyday I walk in the doors I have no idea what to expect from my body, mind, emotions and spirit and that is what keeps me coming back. Additionally, I am very much a Type A person, so the practice adds a much needed balance to my personality. It allows me to let everything outside of the room go and focus on what is going on internally.What else should we know about you?
I love being at the beach, and one day hope to live somewhere that I can do so all year round.
I've always been active but after 14 marathons and years of running I started feeling pain in my knees. So I thought I'd try yoga.
In my first Bikram class, I could not kneel down, which made me realize the stress I had been putting on my joints.
Physically class was intense. Mentally it was even more of a challenge. I looked around the room wondering what I was doing with such bendy people. But walking home after class everything looked more vivid and my body felt more open. My mind, too! I felt happy for no reason.
I'm fascinated by how much my body has changed, and also how far I have to go. I love that it's a lifelong practice and not a race. Not about perfection but trying the right way. One day, one posture, one breath at a time. As Bikram says, It's so simple!
I've been practicing yoga since 2003, teaching since 2004, and I'm grateful for the opportunity to teach in the US and internationally... so far in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Minneapolis, St. Paul, and now New York City.
March 2010What brought you to your first class?
I was always passionate about yoga! I wanted to try something new, challenging, inspiring, and just for me.What kept bringing you back?
The fact that I smiled the whole way home after my first class and each one after that.Do you still have tough classes? How do you get through them?
Of course, we all do. I try to focus on my breath and really listen to the teacher so my mind doesn't wander. Allowing their words to control my movements really helps to calm down my thoughts.What do you do when you're not working at BYBR?
Taking class at BYBR! Or dancing to Bob Marley.What's your favorite Brooklyn hangout? (or What do you like best about Bay Ridge?
BYBR, duh.What is your advice for new students?
Hydrate before and after class, lock your knee, and smile.What's the best thing about Bikram Yoga?
I can't choose just one thing. I love absolutely everything about it. It's breathtaking! ;)Anything else you'd like to tell us?
Doing Bikram Yoga will be the best thing you will ever do for yourself. You won't regret it, I promise. And, I cannot wait to go to Bikram Yoga teacher training!
I started doing Bikram Yoga about a year ago.What inspired you to start Bikram yoga?
I am an exercise-aholic. I had worked out at the gym for the past 20 years. I wanted more of a challenging workout. Also recently, I was starting to have lower back pain. I tried Bikram Yoga with a friend and I love it.What are your favorite things about practicing Bikram Yoga?
I love the heat even in the summer time. Bikram Yoga teaches me to have inner peace. At the beginning, I had to force myself to go to yoga. Now, I am happy to practice yoga and have more patience to practice my poses.When you started, what was your biggest challenge in class?
The biggest challenge in class was just to go to the studio and doing the poses correctly.What changes has doing this yoga brought to your life?
I am less stressed mentally and physically. I am more flexible. The most important thing that I learned is to stop doubting myself and just do it.How did you know you wanted to be a teacher?
I had never imagine myself as a Bikram Yoga Teacher. After some consideration and nudge from my husband, I decided to take the Bikram Yoga Teacher Training in California. I would like to learn this powerful healing yoga and spread it philosophy to help others. After some soul searching, dedication and determination, I have finally made it. The rest is history.What's your favorite Bikram saying?
My favorite is "You want suffering 90 minutes or suffering 90 years" and "Never give up".What do you do when you're not teaching?
I mentioned that I am an exercise-aholic. So, you can find at the gym when I am not teaching.
How do you motivate yourself to keep practicing when you're tired or just don't feel like it?
I have a strong "Mindset" to motivate myself to keep practicing even when I'm tired or just don't feel like it.
Any advice to someone thinking about trying Bikram Yoga for the first time?
Don't give up so early - slow down and be more patient. Try a few classes, make friends and talk to the teacher.
June 2009What brought you to your first class?
I wanted to try yoga and was looking for something challenging.What kept bringing you back?
How I feel when class is finished.Do you still have tough classes? How do you get through them?
Most of my classes are a "labor of love". I focus on breath and pushing through.What do you do when you're not working at BYBR?
I run around after two amazing little girls and am getting ready to go to nursing school.What do you like best about Bay Ridge?
Bay Ridge has a lot of great places to "hang". I enjoy walking on Shore Rd.What is your advice for new students?
The breeze you get when the teacher opens the door. Just kidding! It helps me focus, gives me energy, and relaxes me all at the same time.