Bikram Yoga: Mary Jarvis Workshop

So on the weekend that passed, Tony and I went to a Bikram Yoga class with teacher and coach to many Yoga Asana Champions, Mary Jarvis… this is her….



We visited Bikram in the Lanes (BITL), Brighton for the first time and also attended her Yoga Posture Workshop there after the 2 hour class.

We were there from 11.00 am all the way through to 7.30 pm!  8.5 hours with Mary Jarvis and it flew by in a heart beat.  It was wonderful.  The class was one of the most beautiful I’ve had.  Her workshop and instructions were clear and very helpful for improvement.  Her stories were funny and we even got to take a little break to view the naked bike riders through the window (OK, I was too short to see but…. we’d already seen them up close a couple of years ago in London so I didn’t really need to see them this time… the first experience was enough to make me not want to use a Boris Bike EVER).

Back to the point, demonstrations were done by 2014 World Asana Champion, Zeb Homison


and BITL’s very own BA Goddard

Half-Moon BA

So did we learn a lot?  Hell Yeah!!

And I couldn’t stop gawking at the close up demonstrations.

When something is beautiful, you just can’t take your eyes off it and both BA and Zeb were absolutely beautiful.  There’s no other way to describe it.  Their bodies were beautiful, form was beautiful, strength and stamina awe inspiring (they had to hold those postures for a really long time to go with Mary’s descriptions), the muscle definition beautiful, like Da Vinci’s universal man and all his muscle sketches.  Mary used “Adonis” to describe the bodies of the champions she trained.  I couldn’t agree more – the human body in its perfect form IS beautiful.

The pictures above don’t do them justice.  When you’re close up and you see the focus, the stillness, the balance, the strength, the flexibility, the power radiating off them when they’re in the zone….. no words.

Oh and Zeb OWNED Mountain Pose.  What a friggin’ Legend!!  He held that pose forever!


Mary also got another person she was training called Fiona to do a demonstration.  Unbelievable!  First woman Mary has seen in over 10 years to be able to  get into and out of a Full Wheel Pose without letting go of her ankles!

We did some of our own exercises which involved trying to hold a piece of paper in between your thighs, without dropping it while doing Standing Separate Leg Head To Knee Pose and Balancing Stick.

We learned how to correct our Standing Bows (stretching the “knee skin”) and the correct Camel posture set up.  We took pictures, took notes, listened, absorbed, went home, fell asleep and woke up the next day with extremely sore butts, aching legs and aching shoulders.

Say Whuuuuuut?  We never feel anything like this after class but we actually felt the aches and pains after a class with Mary Jarvis!  I said the class was one of the most beautiful I’ve had, I don’t remember pushing at all and yet here I am with muscle aches!

Apparently she’s a bit of a hard-ass when she’s training champions but she seemed very loving and gentle when she was teaching us.

She said she gives her champions a lot of homework and when they start training with her, they become skinny, stringy and then…. their new body takes shape, their true selves grow.  They become “shape shifters”.

It’s a strange concept until you see the pictures of her students and you see how perfectly formed each and every single one of them are.  They’re all like sculptures.

It’s also easier to understand when you feel how sore your butt cheeks are for days after because you were squeezing them for ages without realising.  A few classes with Mary Jarvis and you’ll be cracking walnuts with them for sure.

So did we novices get homework?  Yes, Camels!!


I know right?!! That picture shows EXACTLY what I think about them…

Can’t I do something else??!?!!??!! No… it’s camels!!

Got a pain in the hamstring? Camels

Got sciatic pain?  Camels

Scoliosis?  Camels

Camels, camels, camels….. Want to heal from your emotional stresses and never have to go to therapy ever again?  Be absolved from all your sins and sing praises for the rest of your life?  The equivalent of 10 Our Fathers and 10 Hail Mary’s is doing 12 Camels!  OK She didn’t say that but I reckon it’d work!  Just how many camels a day?  This many….


… every day, for the next 6 months!!!  The future’s looking bright I tell you!

I didn’t ask any questions.  My pain down my leg and my scoliosis, were all problems that were clarified right at the beginning of the workshop with other people’s questions and the solution for which are more camels.

Tony did ask her about his floor bow and she asked him to do one and she corrected it.  She complimented him and said that it was a “good bow” and after 2 years only of yoga and considering the sports he chose to play before starting yoga (tennis and basketball), she said his bow was even more impressive.  Oh, I’m so proud of him.

Some people have natural talent and some people enjoy what they do even if they’re not good at it.  With yoga… it’s both for Tony.   He enjoys it and is good at it!  I’m so delighted for him.  🙂

Overall it was a wonderful workshop (especially for our first ever workshop) and there is now plenty to do and implement before, during and after classes.  Watch this space for our new and improved postures, Mary Jarvis style 🙂

OK, maybe more like new and improved what-we-think-Mary-Jarvis-said style… hmmmm

Strong and Stretchy, no way I’d rather be!

So now it’s time for me to do some… yup, you got it… CAMELS.  Did I ever tell you how much I hate those?  Yeah… well, they’re now about to become my new best friends.



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