I went to Bikram Yoga Hampden ...
I went to Bikram Yoga Hampden 4-7 times a week last year for about 5 months before I moved out of state. I got to know the instructors and the regulars very well. When I first started at BYH, I had a moderate skill level in yoga. I've been going on and off for 11 years. The heat, the poses, the dialog are all challenging at first. At many times I felt like giving up during class, but I made a commitment to myself to keep pushing until I got it right. After just a few stiff and sore weeks later, I was actually able to see the floor behind me when I did a back bend! I could touch my face to my shins without my legs bending! I could do standing-head-to-knee pose without breaking my locked leg! After all the pushing and pain, I started to see these results. That's when I began to know the power of Bikram Yoga. I understood why my instructors pushed me past my comfort level. It's like I had a new body.
For those of you who are apprehensive about trying Bikram Yoga, just remember that it will be a challenge, but it is worth it. Getting yelled at and pushed past your limits is part of Bikram's shtick. And if you think your instructor was cocky, take a look at Bikram himself. It's all part of the technique. It's not for everyone, but it works. I'm a massage therapist and I recognize what is healthy or unhealthy for the body. Even someone with an injury can benefit from the combination of heat and movement. Bikram himself suffered a crippling knee injury when he was young. He was told by many different doctors that he would never walk again. He healed it with yoga in 6 months.
The people at this studio are all kind, compassionate, insanely encouraging individuals. I love them all, even if I think I hate them during class. The excitement is infectious there. The other regular students and I are all Bikram advocates now. We love this place so much we've gotten friends and family members to come too. It's not just the yoga, it's the whole atmosphere. The studio itself is clean, spacious and inviting. They have nonabsorbent, antibacterial rubber(?) carpeting in the studio as opposed to slippery hard wood floors or stinky fabric carpet. The parking is easy. The locker rooms are kept extremely clean, and there's always enough space for everyone to put their stuff. The lobby is relaxing and inviting.
I have been to several other Bikram Studios and they all leave me longing for BYH... They just don't compare. I know every time I go back to Baltimore I'll be stopping in for a class there. Please take the other reviews on this site with a grain of salt. Yes, it can be challenging and sometimes the instructors will push you (mentally) and yell at you, but you don't come here to get coddled and listen to John Mayer songs in the candlelight. You come here to change your body and get in the best shape of your life. If you can make it through your first week, you'll understand. I promise.