It's very difficult to go for a week without practicing if you're a Bikram Yoga addict. Fortunately there were several studios within 30 miles of John's brother's house and I was able to sneak out to three of them before anyone woke up. If you're not a Bikram Yoga addict you can stop reading now as you'll be bored to tears. Habershons, you can study the family tree .
The closest studio (in Los Gatos) was not "pure" Bikram. The schedule offered different kinds of yoga, but as they had an early Bikram class I decided to try it. The differences were immediately noticable.
1. They rented me a GREEN mat.
2. People were talking in the yoga room before class started.
3. There were peace signs covering all the walls that didn't have mirrors.
4. The floor was hardwood.
5. The instructor walked in and told us to get into Mountain Pose.
6. The room was only about 100 degrees.
7. Before Half Moon, instead of going right and left right and left, we were told to go forwards and backwards as well.
8. They started playing music beginning with Awkward pose and right through to the end.
9. In Eagle we had to point our toes out to the side before wrapping our legs.
10. We turned sideways for the three poses after Balancing Stick.
11. We did the same 26 poses and two breathing exercises, but with the exception of the mention of a Japanese Ham Sandwich there was very little Bikram dialogue.
12. The instructor touched me twice. The second time was in the final savasanah. My eyes were closed. I jumped out of my skin. And I think she rubbed some eucalyptus into my shoulders.
There were a lot of other differences, but it's been a while now since the class and I can't remember everything. I should point out, however, that I felt great once class was over.
Two more studios to follow.