MUNTINLUPA CITY, METRO MANILA – Ria Cejero spends around 12 hours a day worming in a major call center firm but makes time to practice Bikram yoga.
The 41-year-old human resource officer has handled employee relations since 2002, and has experienced more than a fair share of late hours and work-related stress.
She had read about the benefits of Bikram yoga before joining colleagues for a class at Bikram Yoga Alabang. “Losing weight was not a priority at that time, but I felt that I needed to relax,” Ria says.
Developed by Bikram Choudhury, Bikram yoga is a form of yoga involving 26 postures or asanas and two breathing exercises practiced for 90 minutes inside a room heated to 40 degrees Celsius.
Choudhury himself was able to benefit from the practice when he suffered from a knee injury at the age of 17.
“Bikram yoga is intended for all fitness levels. Regular practice may help improve flexibility, cardiovascular and muscular strength, and endurance if the series of postures are executed properly. The room is heated to allow the muscles to become more responsive to deeper and sustained stretching,” explained Ginger Diaz, studio director of Bikram Yoga Alabang.
Since opening in October 2010, over 1,500 people have practiced at Bikram Yoga Alabang. “We are proud to have contributed in introducing more people to the wonderful benefits of Bikram yoga,” Diaz said.
As a busy career woman, Ria still considers it a challenge to dedicate 90 minutes a day for exercise, not to mention the time spent before and after the session. Happily, she says that the benefits of Bikram yoga practice outweigh the challenges.
Ria recalls that her first few classes made her dizzy and nauseous, which beginners are advised to anticipate.
“Bikram yoga helped me to relax. I started sleeping well when I started the practice. Getting enough sleep is all I needed at that time to get the balance for the practice,” she said. Gradually, the dizziness disappeared.
“Focus and discipline are skills that will greatly improve when you practice Bikram. It helped me manage my schedule as well, because my goal is to be more efficient and to finish work earlier.”
In Bikram yoga, hydration is key. Practitioners are advised to double the normal water intake of eight glasses a day. Hours before practice, Ria drinks plenty of water and only eats light, easily
Despite being used to night-shift work, Ria says there are days when she finds it difficult to sleep. “Bikram practice helped me deal with that. My breathing improved dramatically, which in turn, allowed me to handle stress effectively.”
Her favorite posture in the series? The eagle pose. “It makes me feel strong and I love the way my body feels during and after the pose. I know I’m not even close to perfection in doing this
pose but I feel deeper into each pose every time I do it.”
(Photo courtest of Bikram Yoga Alabang)
Get more information about Bikram Yoga Alabang
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