Bikram Yoga: Loving yoga in multicultural London

I realise the blog is a little sporadic with bits of this and bits of that.  Apparently a really successful blog with a strong following is one that only focusses on one thing.  I am defying all odds and going against all rules and am blogging about anything and everything my heart desires.

In saying that, it’s not really useful if you’re not interested so, I’m now going to dedicate Wednesdays as the Bikram Yoga blog day!  If you’re into it… check the blog on Wednesdays and if you’re not or are curious.. check out what we’re rambling about on another day.  Also, I’ll make sure to write “Bikram Yoga” in the title – just so you’re certain! 😉


This week I have to tell you about how awesome it is to be doing Bikram Yoga in London because it is so multicultural.

I don’t think there is any other “multi-cultural” place on earth.  Sure sure, lots of countries have lots of different cultures, I used to think Australia was “multi-cultural” but it just isn’t the same as it is here in London.

What do I mean?  Well, in Oz, you have LOTS of cultures but they all stick to themselves and certain groups live in certain areas (I know I’m being a little generalist here but as an example, you get the Lebs in Bankstown, the Viets in Cabramatta, the Greeks in Earlwood… etc. right? and they all speak English albeit with accents but they don’t really integrate and intermingle).

But here in London, it’s all integrated and the diversity is evident even just walking down our street where people are speaking French, Polish, Spanish, Russian, Italian, English (in various accents), walk a little bit more and you get all the dialects of Africa.

I mention this because this diversity became extremely apparent after having gone to yoga last week!!  I never had the same teacher and none of them ever had the same accent!!  The thing is, Bikram Yoga is led through the dialogue so it was interesting to experience each class led with the same dialogue but with different accents + personalities!

Day 1 – The Talkative English Teacher

This woman is one of my favourite teachers, she keeps talking and talking and does not allow you to think AT ALL.  She has that amazing skill an Aborigine has when they’re blowing into a didgeridoo and breathing in at the same time (I never could understand how they could breathe out and in all at the same time to keep a constant flow of sound) but this is what she does with her talking… She’s not Aboriginal but she’s mastered their art – it’s like she never stops for a breath!

You just have to listen to her and follow her instructions and you’ll get through the entire 1.5 hr class without one single internal thought ever having the chance of popping out… She pushes you hard and she cracks jokes so you smile through class.  BRILLIANT!

Day 2 – The Terminator

I won’t tell you any more about this other than… see this blog I did about it 😉

Day 3 – The Aussie

You can tell the Aussie by the way they say there O’s.  Like “no” or “don’t”

To the foreign ear it apparently sounds like “oy”.   “Noy” and “Doyn’t”   I’m an Aussie… I doyn’t really get it until I hear it compared to an English or American “No”.  OH BUT WHEN YOU DO…. it feels like Hoyme!

The rest of her accent sounded pretty English but then you hear the twang “Doyn’t kick out unless your standing knee is locked” and it takes you right back to Sydney!  Ahh….

She was also stricter with the water intake and never opened the door for air…. yup, that’s how I remember it.

Day 4 – The Espanish Instrrrutor

Eef yorrr estandin leg is lak a concrrreeet block, no shakin. DEN you can estrech yorrr oderr leg out. Joo mus consentrayt en meditayt.

Mate… I’m not bagging it out… I LOVE the Spanish accent, hell I wish I was Espanish! – I’m always rrrrrepeating it everrrry time joo no like when Alonso does an interrrr view “It was a berry berry good rrrrrace”!  I couldn’t find a clip with an example but listen to this one where he says “bic to rrrrry” and “tyrrre Degrrredasion”  and you’ll know what I’m talking about.

The Spanish are awesome people, very laid back, rrrelax and so this class definitely had me smiling and rrrrepeating instructions in my head for the entire class.

Day 5 – The American

“B!tch got attitoood” 😉

This woman holds a class…. with attitude.  Definitely a different feel in her classes, it almost feels competitive… and a bit fashion conscious….

I get you have to take yourself seriously sometimes and I do take my classes seriously and I get that it’s nice to look good, even if you are sweating like crazy but really, I prefer yoga to be my time out… not my time on.  ie… I like to be daggy, comfortable and relaxed and none of that works in this woman’s class!

She did however stick strictly with the dialogue and kept to time unlike other teachers and if I ignore the attitude and stick with the words, it’s pretty much just like every other class.

Day 6 – The Saffa

This saffa’s accent wasn’t too strong but I could tell when she said “don’t kick ahhht” instead of “don’t kick out”.

She was quite bubbly and gave much more demonstrations of various poses so it was very helpful AND she gave some affirmations while you were in savasana which was nice 🙂

Day 7 – The Male English Instructor

This was a funny class – he kept yawning throughout the entire initial breathing exercise and then he bent over to give a demonstration of a pose, and farted!

His reaction: “ummm… yes, that was my shorts… well it’s a good excuse anyway!”  LOL

Nice one Mr Bean!


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