I started Bikram yoga in the fall of 2003 when a visiting friend asked me to try Bikram Yoga. The 90 minutes was at first an excellent way to exercise, sweat and detox. But eventually something magical started happening during those 90 minutes. I didn’t understand it at first, until I realized that I was not thinking or planning. I was breathing, listening and doing my best.
Those first tough and sweaty 90 minutes eventually became the most wonderfully peaceful 90 minutes of my day. The room may have been hot and humid, the postures may have seemed impossible, the teacher may have been tough, but none of it mattered. My mind was quiet and at ease. And, as we all know we live in a noisy world and these 90 minutes of quiet and ease was the most amazing gift anybody could have ever given me. The experience gave me the courage to keep going with it. It is a beautiful thing to learn to trust yourself and to just listen.
My Bikram yoga practice eventually led me to teacher training and, in the Spring of 2005, I became a certified instructor. Since then, my joy has been sharing my passion for yoga through teaching, owning Bikram Yoga Ridgefield and “smiling a little bit” in and out of the hot room. As a teacher, studio owner and regular practitioner, I have come to appreciate what Bikram Yoga has done for me in so many ways… always learning…always grateful.
Maritza is extremely thankful for the physical as well as spiritual benefits she has gained and continues to experience from Bikram yoga.
“In January 2012, I walked into Bikram Yoga Ridgefield and took my very first class. I came back and practiced the following 6 days. This yoga has impacted me so profoundly; my physical body, energy level, emotional health, and more, that 22 months later (Fall ’13), I undertook the unique and grueling 9-week teacher training in L.A., becoming certified to teach this fantastic yoga! I knew of what a great challenge class was for me as a student, and I wanted to encourage others to keep going and never give up! I knew all the wonderful benefits it had given me, and I wanted to help others have them as well. Teaching has been such a joy and a growth experience. I sing, (Masters of Music, Manhattan School of Music), play piano, and have been teaching voice lessons for over 20 years. I have felt so blessed to connect with the dedicated students at Bikram Yoga Ridgefield. They have spurred me on in my practice, and I am grateful!”
Steve was born in The Bronx, NY. He is a retired New York City Firefighter and served in The United States Marine Corps as a sergeant. Steve finished his Bikram Yoga Teacher Training in Thailand in the Fall 2014.
“Bikram yoga has given me my life back, after retiring from the fire department, I was lost. I found Bikram yoga and it gave me the strength and motivation to go back to school, acquiring my Nursing Degree. The yoga helped so much with the stress of the nursing programs and with pain from prior injuries. I decided it was time for me to give the gift of this yoga back; teacher training was a great experience for me. I love teaching yoga and try to convey that love and enthusiasm in every class I teach.”
“I was working in the restaurant business when a Bikram Yoga studio opened up around the corner. Friends and co-workers were trying it out and reporting back how hot it was, and hard! In September 2005, I decided to give it a try and was immediately hooked; I went home after my first class feeling lighter, energized, in a better mood. I went back the very next morning and gave it another try, and another and another. I started scheduling work and life around class, loving the way this yoga was changing my body and mind. After focusing on my practice for several years I decided to attend the Teacher Training program and become a certified Bikram Yoga instructor in 2009. Teaching Bikram Yoga has allowed me to become a more patient, compassionate human being. I am thrilled to be a part of this movement toward improved health and well-being.”
Lisa happened upon Bikram Yoga in 2004 one very cold New England winter’s day. She went in for the heat. She came out feeling reborn.
Over time, she worked through many of the injuries she had from years as a professional dancer: Within 1 year, she could finally walk up and down stairs again without pain in her knees; after 3 years, she forgot that she had ever lived with chronic back pain. She is still working through some issues deep in her hips. One step at a time.
Lisa has been incredibly fortunate to learn from the best senior teachers of Bikram Yoga — like Maritza Johnson. While she enjoys and incorporates many yoga styles into her own personal routine, Bikram Yoga remains her core practice
Wendy has always lived an active lifestyle and became serious about yoga while recovering from a life changing injury. She found the meaning of “working in” rather than “working out” through her yoga practice. She is inspired to teach and pass on the gift that she has found in yoga and is thankful for all the opportunities to welcome people to the mat.
Wendy did her 200 hour Power Yoga teacher training in 2011 under Lyn Kehoe and completed 500 hour RYT with Ohra Wellness under Michelle Briks. She has trained and been certified in a variety of yoga styles and modalities since.