Perceptions (Chapter 2)

“Yoga is really good for relaxing the muscles”, a fitness trainer said to me. “I’ll do yoga when I’m old and can’t run anymore”, said another fitness enthusiast and “Yoga is too boring for me”. These are the common perceptions of Yoga by most men, and admittedly myself before, who wish only to partake in tough tackling and muscle bulging activities. Anything else, much less Yoga, would be considered as an insult to the manhood of ill-informed egos such as my once myself.

During the life transformation journey chronicled in my “crossroads” post, I had sought out where I belong. I wanted to find something that I would do not for exercise, but as a lifestyle. Something that basically defined me as a person and would stay with me for decades, or even my entire lifetime.

It was however in CrossFit training that I finally found something that I truly enjoyed. Every session was a challenge that pushed me to my physical and mental limits. I knew then that there is nothing else that can be as intense until I attended my first strength training-based yoga session which the studio called “Power Flow”. Due to my ill-advised perception of yoga, it took a lot of convincing by my then girlfriend (now fiancé) to attend the class although I hesitantly agreed eventually. She is an avid asana practitioner and was lightyears ahead of me in her core strength and flexibility, but I had never thought that there was any form of yoga practise that could match the intensity of my CrossFit regime.

At the end of my first strength yoga class, I was absolutely blown away by not only how drenched in sweat I was, but also at how simple yoga poses when combined with transitions and balancing was such a challenge. My perception of Yoga then on, changed completely and forever.