Exercise Class Try Outs #1: Yoga

I’ve decided to do something a little bit out of my comfort zone – Try out different fitness classes offered at YMCA Calgary locations.

I will document my experience in each new class here on the YMCA Calgary blog.

Group yoga class

Yoga – Passive

I was invited to participate in a lunchtime yoga class. The program guide describes it as:

Tune in to your true self and find peace and belonging within. This yoga class will guide you through slow poses, breath work and meditation in a serene atmosphere intended to create calm, restore energy and promote healing in mind, body and spirit.

I was a little hesitant. I’ve never taken a real yoga class before. I’ve done yoga at home with friends following a video, I’ve done yoga-like classes at the dance studio I danced at when I was younger, but never a real yoga class.

Thankfully, my coworkers who invited me to come along were very welcoming and even set out a mat for me while I changed.

The instructor was very welcoming, came over and introduced herself. The other participants in the class smiled or said hello, or just focused on their breathing and relaxation while lying on their mats waiting for the class to start.

Yoga-passive is a slow moving class focused on breathing. I found it easy to follow along. The instructor demonstrated each pose or movement while describing it in a soft voice. I felt both relaxed and invigorated during this class. I felt like I got a workout but didn’t feel tired like I had just gone running or weightlifting.

Some of the poses were easy for me. Others were more difficult. But looking around the room I did not feel out of place – everyone else was good at some poses and not so good at others.

I’ll be honest though – yoga, even passive yoga – is still a workout.

I was sore for a couple of days after this class. The workout comes from moving and lifting your bodyweight in poses like downward dog.

I think I’ll continue with yoga – I like that it is a stress-reliever, a relaxation, and a workout all at the same time.

Check out this infographic to find out more about the benefits of yoga.


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