Student Feature: Fressa

“Bikram yoga can be expensive, but the amount of money being spent at doctor visits and prescriptions is more than going to yoga 3x a week. I stand by that 100%.”

I so enjoy having Fressa in class.  She’s always all smiles.  During the October Transformation Challenge she had lost a couple inches, but when I asked her for feedback, she told me about all the other amazing things happening after she incorporated a consistent yoga practice.  Read on!

 

How long have been practicing yoga?  Since May 2017

How often do you practice?  I try to practice at least 3-5x a week.

 

What changes have you noticed in your practice?  I have increased my flexibility, strength, and endurance. I have severe allergies and I always have to breathe by mouth, but the breathing exercises we do in class have taught me how to breathe through my nose.  I can tolerate the heat better because I’ve developed focus and stillness during class.   I’m more aware of my stance and sitting posture all day.

 

Do you have an injury or health condition that yoga has relieved or healed?  When I started at the company I currently work for, I started to get muscle spasms on my upper back and neck, probably from sitting all day. My muscle spasms would happen so often that my boss referred me to file for workplace injury.   

For more than a year, I went to physical therapy once a week, followed up with the doctor every 6 weeks, and was prescribed pain pills and muscle relaxants.  Later, I had to wear a brace on my wrists to avoid carpal tunnel syndrome.

I work full time and was also at school full time, so I was sitting down all day and night.  I started feeling a pinching and numbing on my right hip and knee.  After the 2nd or 3rd month of Bikram Yoga, I felt relief from sudden muscle spasms.  I don’t have to wear my wrist brace every day.  The numbness in my hip and knee will come and go but practicing yoga has slowly alleviated the numb/pinch feel.

 

What daily activities has yoga made a difference in?  I can sleep better and I don’t wake up with neck and back spasms. I’m more aware and engaged in my posture sitting and standing.  My breathing is a lot better and as much as I’ll deny it, my fiancé and family have told me that I snore.  But now, they say my snoring isn’t noticeable.  I’m building a higher endurance in my workouts and I’m eager to go to Bikram as often as possible.

 

How is your yoga practice contributing to the rest of your life?  Bikram yoga has made me happier and stronger. Bikram yoga has changed my body and my spirit.  Every class I take is a challenge; from getting to class to staying in the class all 90 minutes.  I’ve lost inches thanks to Kaiyan’s October challenge, which helped me become more conscious of what I eat and drink.   

The postures help open my chest, which I believe is what helps with my breathing.  The postures are helping my spine lengthen, helping me with posture and pain relief.  The postures have helped lessen the inflammation on my hip and knee.

I’ve become more disciplined in and outside of class and I’m more confident and agile.

 

Do you have a “favorite posture?”   “Least favorite?”

Favorite: Standing Head to Knee, Standing Separate Leg Stretching, Triangle, Half Tortoise, Rabbit

Least: Standing Separate Leg Head to Knee, Locust, and Bow;  I focus on these in class to get better

 

What is your most memorable experience in class?  Some of my most memorable experiences in class are when the teachers adjust my posture. I remember being in posture thinking I was doing it right, but when adjusted, the posture became more challenging and every adjustment was always intense but it’s the greatest feeling.

In my first classes, all I could think about was the heat and wiping my sweat off.  When I finally followed the advice to focus on stillness and breath, the heat wouldn’t even cross my mind. Every posture that I’m able to try my best, focus, and hold until the teacher says “change” is memorable for me. 

 

What has been your most difficult experience with your yoga practice?  The most difficult experiences I’ve had in my practice are when I feel dazed and dizzy. I take breaks and sit down when that happens.  I remember having a strain in my ankle, my toes, or my calves cramped, but I stayed in the room. The best part of the practice is it’s my body and I can feel where it hurts, I can stop and adjust the posture to my ability. The teachers remind us that every class is different for every day.

 

Any additional comments that you would like to mention?  My relationship with exercise was always a love/hate relationship. I did it because I wanted to lose weight, not to change my lifestyle. I’ve always quit a sport or a promising workout routine after the end of a month or two, but Bikram has been my only constant exercise. It took awhile to find something I’m passionate and addicted to on a daily basis.

I’d like to thank Kaiyan, Lily, Jennifer, Marce, Karri, Francisco, and Kristin for their being my constants and providing yoga wisdom, kindness, and teaching such incredibly awesome classes.

A couple teachers have said that Bikram yoga can be expensive, but that the amount of money being spent at doctor visits and prescriptions is more than going to yoga 3x a week. I stand by that 100%. I’d rather spend money for Bikram Yoga than go to physical therapy and paying for pills that will only temporarily relieve my pain.

 

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