While the practice of yoga has ben around for thousands of years, it has recently become the hot new trend in many urban areas. Here in Portland, the yoga community is vibrant and growing. Everywhere you go in Portland there are yoga classes offered and chances for to join the community.
I have explored a few different yogic paths here in Portland myself and have found some interesting new ways of being able to train my body. Stretching and flexibility are imperative to other facets of fitness such as weight lifting and running.
I have attended yoga classes here and there for a few years now but nothing serious. This year I decided to try the newest explosion of yoga popularity, Bikram or ‘Hot’ Yoga. This practice is controversial because some experts believe that training your body so intensely in such a hot environment is not good for your overall fitness condition. I attended a class at Bikram Yoga Greater Portland and it was intense. The heat is overwhelming and you really have to focus to keep on track with the class. I really enjoy sweating so I liked the class overall but thought that it was a little too advanced for my level of yoga skills. After a few times I decided to explore another yoga path.
Recently I attended a yoga class on campus and found it much easier for moderate yoga athletes to participate. The class moved slower and focused more on core strength rather than extreme flexibility.
My roommate, UP junior Darcy Gurley, is a yoga guru and even attends yoga festivals annually such as the Wanderlust Festival in Strawberry, California. This intense weekend of yoga and spirituality tests your body and mind for strength and awareness. She says that, “yoga helps me challenge myself both physically and mentally and teaches me lessons that I can apply off the mat.”
Yoga is yet another active path that contributes to your overall health. Fitness doesn’t have to be boring. You can explore all different types of fitness until you find something that suits you. If you are looking for something in the Portland area, check out the Yelp website with lots of information about yoga in Portland! Good luck with your search!