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Bikram Yoga Langley Student of the Month (October): Francis

In the four months he's been attending our Langley studio, Francis and his beautiful dahlias have become a familiar sight. This 68 year-old husband and father of three has made some incredible progress in his health, and he's not shy about sharing the benefits he's experienced from doing Bikram Yoga.

Sports were a way of life for Francis, whose business was real estate development, until he suffered a severe back injury in May of 2011. At that time, he was confined to bed, being only able to lay on his stomach in a concave position with head and feet elevated.

Bikram Yoga was first mentioned to him when he sought treatment for his neck while on vacation in Hawaii in February of this year. When he returned to Langley, his local RMT strongly cautioned him against Bikram Yoga, suggesting that it would be too much for him, but endorsed yoga as rehabilitation.

Swallowing what he now realizes was false macho pride, Francis began to practice yoga to relieve his pain and immediately took to it. Again and again, Bikram Yoga would come up in conversation, and again and again he was warned off of it.

As a hockey player Francis prefers to meet challenges head-on rather than back off, so decided to see for himself what Bikram Yoga was all about - he's never looked back. Francis says, "I was immediately addicted and have not gone back to regular yoga since (4 Months now)." To all of his macho hockey and golf buddies that scoff at his yoga, Francis dares them to try a class and heal themselves. So far, three of his friends are also doing yoga at his prompting.

The healing that Francis has undergone is incredible. "When I began, there was virtually no pose I could manage save the breathing exercises, which in themselves were a challenge," Francis recalls. With perseverance, he has improved his range of motion and balance: "I am  elated that I can do nearly all of the poses." He also loves getting his aerobic workout in yoga class rather than through swimming, which he complains is boring.

"The biggest excitement is that a severe stenosis emanating from my spinal column injury is easing a little so that there are occasions that my right foot is not numb and tingling."

From bedridden to hitting the links, is quite a journey. Especially for someone who as little as three months ago dreaded that he would never be able to golf again. Francis states with no small anticipation, "I am very much looking forward to rejoining my buds at our annual fall golf get-together."

Life certainly is coming up a bed of dahlias for Francis, who has also lost 15 pounds, mostly from the waist, without changing his eating habits.

"I hope I am not too optimistic, but I am quietly confident that with another number of months of continued Bikram Practice, my back injury and stenosis will have dissipated to the point where it is an insignificant factor in my life."

 

Would you like to be featured as a Student of the Month, or do you have a suggestion of someone we should feature? Let us know at: info@bikramyogalangley.ca 


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Bikram Yoga Maple Ridge Student of the Month (October 2012): Dave

When he was told that he was going to be featured as our Student of the Month, Dave's reaction was, "What!!? Me!!? Student of the Month? I mean, it's an honour just to be nominated, but.. You like me; you really LIKE me!!"

If you don't already know him, that gives you a taste of what a great sense of humour Dave has, even when he's "playing 'Simon Says' in Hell". (That's what he calls Bikram Yoga classes.)

Considering that Dave is also a Major in the Army Reserves and manages the City of Vancouver's Tactical Training Centre, I'm sure our instructors are not the toughest task-masters he's ever seen. Dave begs to differ. He recounts the horror of his first class thus: "after about an hour, when I was sure I could not take one more minute in that place, the instructor (I think it was Mary) said, "Okay, we're almost halfway done!"

Although Dave still puts a Bikram class on par with the heat of The Sun, he loves what it's done for him: "It's a little known fact, but Bikram Yoga actually helps one prepare for the Army Battle Fitness Test." (Thanks to Drill Sargent Mary.)

Dave's 'hot' and flexible figure has also been garnering comments. In the first six months of practicing, he lost 30 pounds. Even better, he brags that he can now put his socks on without sitting down first. He's also been able to cut back on his blood pressure medication, sleeps better, has more energy, is more flexible, has less joint pain and says "life just seems easier to handle."

For someone who never imagined he would've been doing something like this before his wife signed him up for Bikram classes, Dave sounds like a committed yogi: "I like the effects on my health and fitness the most, but I also like that every time I go into the studio I am facing a challenge and succeeding. The first day I actually did a recognizable Floor Bow was, well, it was a good day."

Dave's future goals for his life, yoga practice and health include more all of these - more life, more yoga and more health.


 

Hear what he had to say back in April:   

 

Dave W testimonial
 

 


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An Open Letter to Bikram Yoga Practitioners and Frenzied Back-to-Schoolers,

Dear Fellow Bikram Yoga Practitioners and Frenzied Back-to-Schoolers, There’s meditation. There’s music. And then there’s yoga. Bikram’s Hot Yoga. -- what Bikram himself refers to as ‘the torture chamber’ – but perhaps I would like to add ‘a more than gracious one.’ Tell me…do we suffer from a madness only 40 degrees Celsius can cure? If the very thought of licking a bead of sweat off your knee cap while engaged in the standing head to knee pose sends a gripping chill straight up your thighs, I’m afraid you’ve got the madness too. I know I do. And like the others, I love doing Bikram’s Yoga and absolutely can’t get enough because… “…in a world that is becoming ever more demanding and uncertain, my yoga practice strengthens my resistance against stress and trains my mind to stay focused on what matters…” “…because yoga – in and of itself – has no deadlines and requires no note-taking. It requests nothing, expects nothing, and wants nothing more than my dedication in the moment, my determination to stay in the room, and my patience to witness my own mind drama and set it aside for ninety minutes…” I know. I may have this madness pretty bad. But I’m not the only one. When we’re not tearing into a brand new shipment of Shakti activewear and wrapping our bodies around the heap in pure ecstasy, we’re doing Bikram’s Hot Yoga. When we’re not laundering yoga towels, hanging mats and sun-drying teensy outfits, we’re doing Bikram’s Hot Yoga. When we’re not waking up in the morning laying in Savasana with a textbook on our chest… …chilling water bottles…hoarding coconut water…drooling over a necessary boost of evening caffeine… ...we’re doing Bikram’s Hot Yoga. Your commitment to attending on a regular basis throughout the school year will bring you the natural energy and mind control you need on a daily basis, one that supports your focus, determination, and motivation to reach your highest potential. If you love it – love the idea of a calmer and more peaceful YOU, along with greater mental clarity and ability to handle pressure more effectively…then I’m sure you’ll want to take advantage of Candice’s generous back-to-school offer before September 15, 2012. ONLY $649 for unlimited classes until April 30, 2013 for all students with a valid ID!   ($699 for non-students) Where else can we train the mind to push past emotional obstacles, stretch and manipulate each and every muscle in our entire body AND purge toxins in 40% humidity – all at the same timefor 35 cents a day and 90 minutes out of our schedule? Namaste, Lauren Plaviak P.S.  Remember, there is a cure for this madness! Take advantage of the back-to-school special before September 15 and rid yourself of this insanity. Nourish your body, mind and soul this Fall and Winter semester for pennies a day! 

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Reflections of the Past 5 Years from Long-time Students

As Bikram Yoga Langley celebrates our 5th anniversary, we asked some of our longest-standing students to reflect on the past five years.   RAJ (Second Most Yoga Classes Completed at BYL - 1111 Yoga Classes so far) Raj has been practicing since Day One and claims; "I loved it after the first class." He recalls his first class in terms that ring true with any Bikram Yoga practitioner, "you don't think in the first class; you just get through it. I felt so good when it was done." Raj, who brightens the studio with his dazzling smile and bright orange flight bag, reports an all-over improvement in body function and lowered blood pressure thanks to his yoga practice. After five years, he's outgrown his dislike for Camel Pose, embracing all postures equally and positively. Raj's advice to new yogis is straightforward, "just keep coming every day." "It's good exercise and you should give it a try," he adds.   SUSAN (Most Yoga Classes Completed at BYL - 1169 Yoga Classes so far) Long-time student, Susan, describes her first encounter with Bikram Yoga as “cheating on the gym”, but "[it] very quickly became all yoga and very little gym." From her dedicated Bikram Yoga practice, Susan has gained many of the things she wanted - breathing, flexibility and balance and has benefitted in ways she never anticipated. She'll never forget her first class: "Without the teacher's wonderful dialogue and encouragement, I wouldn't have come back. I'm claustrophobic, and the yoga has really helped with my breathing and panic." And her focus has gotten better, too. Susan's favorite postures, she admits, are ones that she's feels she's good at. She also confesses that Standing Head to Knee is still not her favorite, but "it doesn't cause the panic it used to." One thing Susan doesn't seem to have any trouble with at all is getting up nearly every morning for a 6 A.M. class. "[Bikram Yoga] is a valuable part of my routine & feel like something's missing if I don't practice. I hope everyone can find something as valuable for themselves. “When asked what advice she has for new yogis, Susan responded with the kind of caring that she experienced as a newcomer to the studio, "be brave & gentle with yourself at the same time. Be focused but not too serious. Try hard but don't beat yourself up – people can get discouraged & I hate to see that."   LINDA Her daughter dragged Linda to her first Bikram yoga class, shortly after our studio opened. She recalls that this first class was “very hard”, nothing like the other yoga she had done. After a hiatus (and celebrating her 60th birthday), Linda returned to Bikram yoga (and our studio) to remedy her knee issues. “And to lose weight,” she adds. “I gained a lot of weight going to ‘all-inclusive’ on holidays.” Not only are Linda’s knees “pretty much back to normal” now, but also she lost 15 pounds in one year and went from a size 12 to a size 8. That’s not all that’s changed for Linda: Camel pose is becoming one of her favorite postures because, she confides, she can do it now! Having experienced all of these amazing benefits, Linda is now the one dragging people to their first yoga class. “I told my sister to start going, and she goes to the studio in Winnipeg now.”  Linda’s advice for new Bikram Yoga practitioners is: “It’s just a matter of getting there and doing it.” In fact, this is great advice for everyone, new or not, to Bikram yoga.   LORA Some students don’t have to be dragged to their first class. Lora was excited by the idea of doing something “terrifying and hard.” She says that she was looking for an opportunity to expand her practice (she did other types of yoga before); she saw that Bikram Yoga Langley was opening, so she gave it a try, and “that was it.” Lora has been fully dedicated to Bikram yoga for the past 5 years. “Unbelievably,” she reminisces, “I had a really good [first] class. I was like, ‘Oh, yeah. I can do that every day.’” Next came the realization that she could do better and the will to continue to improve. “You plateau for months and months,” she laments, “then all of a sudden something else changes. You have those light bulb moments when you hear the dialogue, and you’re like, ‘Oh, sucking in my stomach does make a difference or locking your knee does make a difference.’ It takes me a while to get into postures sometimes now, but the more I pay attention to all those things, the less I hurt, the better I do.” Lora has noticed changes at our studio as well as in her practice, as more and more of her fellow students have become teachers. It’s an inspirational example.  Lora sees Bikram yoga as “a good, healthy addiction”, and encourages everyone to “just smile at yourself when things are a little rough in the room.”   ANONYMOUS YOGINI We have one especially dedicated yogini here, but in keeping with her wish to remain anonymous, we’ll call her the Anonymous Yogini. This Yogini speaks from her own perspective and experience (a full five years at this studio), but she also speaks for all yogis at Bikram Yoga Langley. The search for peace and learning how to breathe first brought the Anonymous Yogini to our studio. In her first class she decided, “This is for me, and I can do it, even though it’s very difficult.” Peace from her thoughts has been one of her key challenges, but she has learned to listen to the words of the instructor rather than her screaming joints and muscles or that puckish voice urging her to leave the class to visit the bathroom. Breathing does come more easily for the Anonymous Yogini now and making it though a class without a washroom break is a piece of cake. Her least favorite postures have become her favorites and vice versa. And she’s also seen our Dracaena plant grow from a puny sprout to an enormous green tree that dwarfs our cooler. The Anonymous Yogini has wise words of advice for new yogis: “drink lots before you come; practice often; buy the blue book [Bikram’s Beginning Yoga Class], and just compare yourself to yourself, no everyone else.”   LEILANI Someone who always seems to be happy to be at yoga is Leilani, who received a 3-month membership as a gift from her brother all those years ago. She assures me, though, that she wasn’t so happy in her first class: “I thought I was going to die from heat exhaustion!” She’s noticed that her whole being is calmer and she’s more in control of her health, thanks to Bikram Yoga. She’s also noticed that all of her postures have improved over time. One change that she’s eagerly anticipating is the new Flotex flooring in our yoga room. Leilani advises new students to “be patient and don’t be so hard on yourself.” And adds, “I hope everyone’s unique stores will inspire everyone to do some sort of exercise, whether it be hot yoga or not.” We couldn’t agree more. We hope that all of our members will share their inspirational stories with each other and that everyone tries a free class during our anniversary celebrations, on August 18th. We look forward to celebrating students, staff and teachers that have made Bikram Yoga Langley, in Susan's words, "a wonderful place to be" for the last five years and look forward to celebrating many more with you.    

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Spring Team Challenge

2 People, 31 Days, 50 Classes

$225/team or use current package

Find a partner and join in our Spring Team Challenge! Complete 50 classes between the two of you (at least classes 20 per person) and be entered to win 1 Month Unlimited yoga and an eco-mat! Create a team name and sign up at the Front Desk.


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Yoga Starter Kit


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Holiday Sale


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Gift Guide

Happy Holidays from BYL
Stocking Stuffer $35 for 2 Weeks Unlimitednamaste
Do you have any friends or family
that have not tried Bikram Yoga?
Get this great gift of  health
and wellness for them(new students only).
Our Price: $35.00
Gift Cards GC
Not sure what to get?  Our gift cards lets the recipient choose any class package or products in the studio.  Best gift of mind, body, spirit.
Our Price: any denomination
bottles
BYL Water Bottles
These bottles are made out of high quality stainless steel and can hold 1.5Lof water. They're earth friendly, keep you hydrated, and is the perfect addition to any yoga class. We will even label them for you!
Our Price: $20.00
BYL Baby Onesiesonsie Get these adorable baby onesies for your yoga baby!  Comes in 6 different colors.
Our Price: $10.00
Bikram's Beginning Yoga Class Book      
book
Every Bikram yogi should have this book!  This book covers the 26 postures and 2 breathing exercises in detail, it also offers suggestions for maintaining proper yoga practice, a section on the medical benefits of yoga, notes from Bikram's students, and a good dose of Bikram humor and philosophy.
Our Price: $25.00
Bikram Yoga:  The Guru behind Hot Yoga new book
With his take-no-prisoners philosophy, Bikram describes how the program can reap great medical, physical, and spiritual benefits--the poses work out every part of the body, all of which can help alleviate many common ailments, from asthma to back pain. In addition, the book offers the best ways to incorporate eastern philosophy into a western lifestyle and tips on how yoga can cultivate "a union between body and spirit." Simply put, you don't have to meditate passively to reap the benefits of yoga.
Our Price: $29.95
Bikram Beginning Class CD
Bikram's Beginning Yoga Class 2 CD set.  You can get the feel of an actual Bikram Yoga Class.  Bikram himself leads you through his 90 minute series of postures as is if you were right there with him!
Our Price: $25.00
Pregnancy DVDraj dvd
Rajashree's Pregnancy Yoga is a unique and complete learning experience. It includes both a DVD and an audio CD. The DVD allows you to see the entire series of postures practiced by Rajashree and students at different stages of pregnancy. Through Rajashree's commentary, you learn about the postures and how to perform them correctly. It's like being in a class led by Rajashree herself.
Our Price: $40.00
 
Eco Yoga Matseco mat
Made from technologically-advanced TPE Foam (Thermoplastic Elastomer) Our new ECO yoga mats are fully decomposable and recyclable.  Our manufacturing process is chemical-free, meaning NO toxic materials are used, including phthalate, toluene, latex, rubber, PVC or heavy metals.
Our Price: $42.00-$46.00
Breathe Yoga Mats  Comprised of 3 layers: a cotton terry top, middle absorbent cushioning fibers and a coated, brushed bottom that grips carpet and rubber floors. These layers fully eliminates the need for a bulky sticky mat and slippery towel. Long and thick enough to provide a comfortable, sanitary layer of protection between the body and floor of the yoga studio, yet compact enough to fold or roll up, take home from class and toss in the washer/dryer with ease.
Our Price: $72.00
Hot Yoga Towel
Especially designed for Bikram Yoga. Fits the exact length of your yoga mat.  Absorbs 5 times more than your regular towel.
Our Price: $ 24.00-$52.00
Yoga Wear for Men and Women  yoga wear
We carry Shakti Activewear, Light Activewear, Sweatshop and Onzie Yoga Wear.  These brands of yoga wear are designed using the highest quality fabrics that cling to the body and absorb excess moisture. Our sweat through panels are made to allow heat to dissipate quickly keeping the body temperature cooler. Designed for active men and women, these tops and bottoms are perfect for yoga.
 
Our Price: $40.00-$70.00
Yoga Figurine
figurines
Bow pose figurine for the yoga lover.  Beautiful figure for display of your favorite posture.
Our Price: $20.00
Vega Products
We carry a selection of Vega products that all help fuel a yoga practice! The Sport Optimizer is great for an energy boost before class then the Sport Protein is very restorative after class. We also have some smoothie mixes and snack bars that are all plant-based, sugar free, and rich in nutrients!
Our Price: $4.00-$70.00
Emergen C (box)
Each box contains 36 individual packets.  Each packet contains 24 nutrients, including 1,000 mg of immune supporting vitamin C,* 7 B vitamins to enhance energy naturally* (no caffeine, no crash), electrolytes to refuel and replenish post-yoga.
Our Price: $23.00

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Bishnu Ghosh Memorial Donation Day

It has been a standing tradition in the Bikram community for all schools to be closed on July 9th in honour of the passing of Bikram's beloved guru, Bishnu Ghosh.  This year, instead of closing on July 9th, we will have a Donation Day where all proceeds will go to the Ghosh's Yoga College Trust Fund.

Ghosh's Yoga College is where everything started.  The entire lineage of Bikram Yoga started at Ghosh Yoga College.  Founded in 1923 by Bishnu Ghosh, the school was where Bikram began his yoga training at the young age of 4.  Then years later, Rajashree would receive her training there.

The school is very sacred to not only Bikram but everyone who has or ever will attend a Bikram class. Funds raised from July 9th will go towards keeping the Ghosh's Yoga Collage running.  Please make a donation if Bikram Yoga has in any way impacted your life.

Visit the Ghosh Yoga College website at www.ghoshsyoga.com

All classes on Saturday, July 9th will be by donation.


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Langley Community Day Parade

Parade 2011

On a rainy June weekend the BYL staff braved the rain to participate in the Community Day Parade throughout downtown Langley.

Find more pictures on our Facebook album HERE


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