Tonight’s Hot Power Fusion class was at the Ballard studio with Jessica. One of my favorite things to do on a cold and rainy night is to practice yoga in a hot room. On my way into class, it was pouring out so I was really looking forward to being in the heated studio. Before the start of class, Jessica asked everyone if we were okay with her leaving the lights off during class. We all sung out in unison, “Yes!” It was awesome to have without the overhead lights on. The streetlights outside provided just enough light for me to be able to see my silhouette in the mirror and my mat in front of me.
Can we talk about hands-on assists? Hands-on assists are a completely new concept for me. They don’t exist in Bikram Yoga. In Bikram Yoga, the teacher will typically direct the class from the front of the room either sitting or standing on a podium. It’s very rare for a Bikram Yoga teacher to demonstrate a posture or walk around during class. It’s even more rare to see a Bikram Yoga teacher touch another student in class. For corrections, Bikram Yoga teachers will call on the student specifically and talk them through the correction they need to make instead of physically guide them.
In a Hot Power Fusion class at CorePower Yoga, teachers will often offer hands-on assists throughout class, unless the student has specifically indicated at the beginning of class that they don’t want to be touched. A hands-on assist can be anything from straightening out an arm to putting pressure on the feet. A hands-on assist could also be a gentle neck rub or a light lower back rub during a posture. Hands-on assists are light, lovely and they feel amazing. You never know when in class you’ll receive one, but when you do, they’re always a really nice, welcoming surprise. Sometimes in a smaller class, students might get multiple hands-on assists. It just depends on the teacher and the class size.
Tonight as I was standing in one of the many Downward Facing Dog postures we do throughout class, Jessica walked over to me and told me to spread my arms farther apart, making them shoulder-width apart. That one small correction instantly gave me more stability in the posture and made it a whole lot easier for me to transition into a lower lunge. I had no idea one little adjustment could change a posture so much. Now my Downward Facing Dogs feel so much better. Thanks Jessica!
Class #7, Hot Power Fusion at CorePower Yoga Ballard with Jessica (HPF-5)