Hot, hot heat.

After making the statement that I needed to get back onto my mat last week, I fired up my new 2013 Passport to Prana card and hit a new studio.

With 17 studios on this year’s card, it will be an exciting challenge to schedule my classes. I really look forward to the good weather so I can take a class in Canmore while looking out into the mountains. (I just picture a huge second floor window looking out at the range.)

First studio to check off the list? Pure Hot Yoga. I have heard fantastic things about this studio, but the reviews and photos from their website don’t do it justice.

Screen Shot 2013-01-20 at 11.05.48 AM

This space is BEAUTIFUL!

I couldn’t get over the aesthetics of it and really hoped the class would hold up to the appearance. What a fantastically un-yogic things to say, but remember who’s typing here…

Screen Shot 2013-01-20 at 12.54.51 PMp.s. follow me on Twitter.

I selected a 75 min Warm Yin class, as my muscles were a bit sore and tight from a gym yoga class (ew) and spin class earlier in the week.

Screen Shot 2013-01-20 at 11.07.27 AM

The studio was simple with dark floors and a wall full of mirrors. I laid my mat out and gasped in hot air. It took a while for my lungs to adapt to the room, but soon enough I was breathing normally again. The Yin class is a unique style of yoga which works to increase flexibility and range of motion, mostly in the hips and lower back. Each pose is held between one and six minutes.

With a busy mind, and busy body, I often struggle with Yin or Restorative classes. I fidget, I squirm, I freak out inside my head. I know this is a fantastic lesson in patience for me, so I continue to challenge myself.

Thursday’s class was no different, I had a horrible time staying still and holding each posture. I struggled. I just kept wishing for savasana.

Ecstatic for many reasons when it finally rolled around, I was pleasantly surprised when the instructor places a cool, lemongrass-scented towel in my hand. I placed it over my eyes and spent as long as I could stretched out, with no separation between me and the floor.

For me, this was a brand new thing – I’ve had adjustments, and oils, and eye pillows, but never a cool, scented towel.

For everyone else, this is supposedly nothing new. When I bragged about it at work and on Twitter, I was met with “oh ya, I’ve had that at my studio.”

Either way, studios who do this: you are incredibly rad. Keep it up.

I’d go back to Pure Hot, but do wish it were closer to where I lived. I’m right in the core of the city, which isn’t common – Calgary is an outskirts city.

Another huge perk of Pure Hot is the amount of gentleman that take their classes. I counted no fewer than seven in the class before mine, and there were another five in the Warm Yin practice. I am happy to see more and more men doing yoga. Also, not bad on the eyes.

You can find the full list of Calgary and area studios, and my review of each as I go on my Passport to Prana page.

Have you heard about Passport to Prana? What do you look for in a studio?

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