Sweat: It’s a Good Thing

Despite the profuse sweat that drips into my eyes making it impossible to see, and between the bending twisting poses that cause my muscles to tremor, there is a moment of tranquility that washes over me. I let go of those post-secondary anxieties that normally drive my everyday life. Out of nowhere, I feel truly empowered.
Most of the people around me in this hot yoga class have an idea what to expect. They wear comfortable Lululemon-type clothing and have brought colourful gripped yoga mats with them. I wear thick orange cargo shorts and struggle with a blue wrestling mat that refuses to stay in place as we jump from downward dog to runner’s pose.
The heat from three space heaters which lined the cement walls of the SAIT Campus Centre basement room was at first deceiving. It was hot, but not that hot.
However, only fifteen minutes into the session my shirt begins to drip and hang off my body while I’m left wondering what powers some people’s addictive drive towards perfection.
I hear the twang of an Indian zither in the background as my joints crack with a hiss suitable for the cobra pose we are in. My out-of-shape body groans and I see the importance of learning from a certified instructor like Deana Lee as she makes her way around the room positioning and mending our alignments with subtle guiding touches.
“It’s a great way to connect body and mind and have lots of fun,” says Lee, a SAIT yoga  instructor.
“Make sure you drink (a lot) of water before and after and listen carefully to what your body is telling you.”
My one planted leg is a quivering tower supporting my body as I rotate my hips over each other and lift my other leg into the air. The others in the class make this exploding star position look easy but if a breeze entered, I’d crash onto the floor. (Still, what I wouldn’t do for a breeze right now.)
Despite the pain, the heat, and heavy breathing (mine, mostly) an hour has passed swiftly and I am left with the impression that this has been good for me.

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