News & Events

Samantha Finds Self-Acceptance On and Off the Mat

By News

samantha physical acceptance determination sterling hot yoga benefitsMany students try Sterling Hot Yoga for the physical changes they hope to see—a trimmer waistline, toned arms and legs, and improved balance, strength and flexibility.

But an even more profound change, in many ways, that comes with a hot yoga practice comes from within.

Samantha Wells knows that firsthand. She started practicing at Sterling Hot Yoga Mobile just a few weeks before the 30-Day Spring Challenge began, having never tried hot yoga before.

“I avoided it like the plague,” she said of the heat.

Putting those former notions of hot yoga aside, she quickly committed to completing a 20-class goal to keep her newfound practice consistent and relied on her teammates to help hold her accountable.

What Samantha found on—and off—the mat was not what she expected.

Through sweat, patience and determination, she found a physical acceptance she didn’t realize she needed.

“The things I struggled with, I didn’t realize it,” she said. “But apparently I am. I didn’t realize it was an issue until it got better.”

About halfway through the challenge, Samantha posted this incredibly emotional account of her personal breakthrough on Facebook:

“This is me. This body is mine. It may not be what society tells us is ‘beautiful,’ but I am learning to love it,” she wrote. “What most people can’t see when looking at this picture is this body feels so much better than it did two months ago, it looks better than it did two months ago and it’s mine. And I’m proud of that.

“As I type this, tears are in my eyes. I’m afraid not everyone will see this body the way I have come to, but with everything I have I’m posting this so that other people can start to see their bodies as beautiful, too.”

Samantha’s new perspective on hot yoga was reinforced when she recently revisited her vision board to reflect on past goals and set new ones. She was struck by the irony of one of her posts that incorporated a popular hot yoga saying about the practice’s physical effects.

“I started hot yoga so I could ‘sweat like a pig and look like a fox,’” she said. “Two months in and I’m seeing that there’s so much more to it!”

Gradually, she said her negative self-talk was replaced with a positive, encouraging voice “telling me that I am strong, that I do have a lot to show for my hard work, that the results I’m looking for will come—with time.”

That self-acceptance gave way to a more determined Samantha during a recent kayaking experience. Despite typically avoiding such activities because of her weight, she decided to give it a try.

“The more I fell out, the more determined I was to do it,” she said. “This is a new concept for me. I usually give up, but that day I did not!”

Perhaps that resolve to overcome challenges outside of the hot room was strengthened by her resolve in it. Not only did Samantha meet her 20-day goal commitment, but she exceeded it by four classes!

During that time, there were physical changes, too, she said, that included increased flexibility, regulated blood sugar, improved muscle tone and a feeling of balance.

But most importantly hot yoga made her believe and accept that she is beautiful from the inside out, and she is eager for others to experience their own internal and external transformations.

“Join me if you’d like,” she said. “I’ll come with you to your first class, and we can be beautiful together!”

Come practice with Samantha and get started on your own yoga journey with our 30-day introductory special!

Jana Gets Over the Hump in Camel After a Year

By News
jana rocker camel milestone hot yoga inspiration

Jana Rocker reaches her ankle in Camel after one year of practicing at Sterling Hot Yoga Works Mobile.

Most new students who practice at Sterling Hot Yoga Mobile are intimidated by the level of heat in the hot room.

Jana Rocker was, too, when she signed up for her first class a little more than a year ago.

“I am terrible with heat,” she said. “But the yoga helped me a lot. I can actually go outside in the heat and it does not bother me.”

Taking that first step to try hot yoga wasn’t an easy one. Cancer took its toll on Jana’s life at a young age.

She lost her arm as a result and watched helplessly as friends suffered and died from the disease.

That experience fueled her calling to pursue cancer research, but she dropped out of graduate school in 1995 when a professor told her she couldn’t do science with one arm.

For 10 years, Jana battled PTSD, depression and anxiety until she realized she was “just settling for the status quo and not growing at all as a person or working in my passion.”

“PTSD was still a problem working in a cancer center for a few years,” she said. “I still have my moments, but one thing I swear by is yoga. The ability to control my anxious responses to the hot room has carried off the mat into my life in amazing ways!”

She ranks her decision to try hot yoga as “one of the life-changing scary moments of life.” Though the yoga studio website assures that hot yoga is for everyone, she still wasn’t sure how it would be for her having one arm.

Jana does her best in each and every class and she follows modifications on various postures to get the benefits from them.

With master’s and Ph.D. in hand, Jana now works for the University of South Alabama’s Mitchell Cancer Institute “to help others not have to go through what I went through,” she said.

Between her demanding schedule of research and publishing, plus a move, Jana came up just a little short of her 15-class goal during the 30-Day Challenge. But she saw its merit as a learning opportunity.

“One thing I have learned from fitness challenges is I have a hard time completing them,” she said. “Life manages to derail my plans, but I just have to go with it.”

Jana did manage to reach a pretty exciting milestone nonetheless. She was able to reach back and grab her heel in Camel.

“When I first started a year ago, I couldn’t even lean back at all,” she said. “I had zero core and back strength. With one arm, it’s all core and back for me!”

Hot yoga’s impact on Jana’s life doesn’t end there. In the year she’s been doing yoga, she’s lost 30 pounds, experienced fewer gout attacks and gained mobility in her fused ankle.

“My right ankle is fused,” she said. “I could move it up and down, but I couldn’t rotate it. I kept trying in reverse Savasana, and now I can actually rotate the ankle.”

Jana is such an inspiration to everyone who practices at Sterling Hot Yoga Mobile. She is proof that Sterling Hot Yoga Works works!

If you’d like to see what benefits your hot yoga journey holds for you, get started today with our 30-day introductory special!

Memorial Day Schedule Announced

By Announcement

American Flag Memorial DayMemorial Day is coming, and we will have an abbreviated schedule the weekend before.

Please note the following changes to the regular SHY Mobile class schedule:

Friday, May 22
Normal Schedule

Saturday, May 23
9:30am Class ONLY

Sunday, May 24
8:15am and
9:30 am Classes ONLY

Monday, May 25
5:15 pm and
6:15 pm classes ONLY

Enjoy your holiday and stay safe!

Mobile Yogis in Training on Sunday Afternoons

By News

The Sterling Hot Yoga Summer Teacher Training begins on June 21 in Puerto Morelos, Mexico, just outside of Cancun.

This session, we have three fascinating and wonderful people from Mobile joining us: Michelle Ryan, Sprite McDonald and Scott Singleterry. In addition, Sara Dumas will be joining us in the Fall training!

All four of our trainees are already working to prepare for their trainingthey are watching anatomy videos, completing their CPR and first aid certifications, studying their verbal cues and more!

We are also using the Sunday 4:30 pm class as a workshop of sortsthe trainees are standing on the podium to get used to the view; they will be teaching a posture or two; and depending on the people in class, they may lead a silent class!

Also during class, I will be providing them with insight on bodies and proportions, what to be looking for, how to keep people safe and more.  If you are interested in learning some teaching “secrets,” come to class on Sunday afternoon! It’s fun!

Rachhpal Gill Returns to Mobile

By Announcement

Rachhpal guest teacher hot yoga sterling yogaSterling Hot Yoga Mobile will have a very special and very popular visiting teacher returning soon! Rachhpal Gill, a.k.a. “the breathing yogi,” will be on the podium May 16, 17 and 18.

During his classes, Rachhpal provides so much helpful instruction on how to breathe in and out of the hot room.

Make sure you check out the SHY Mobile teaching schedule so you won’t miss the opportunity to learn from the breathing yogi. You will love it!

To learn more about Rachhpal’s approach to the breath in yoga and his background, read this post on the Casa Om blog.

 

 

Sterling Yoga Retreats

By Events

Are you yearning for a relaxing vacation on the beach with excellent food, awesome adventures and great yoga?

Join us for a few days or a week at Sterling Hot Yoga Teacher Training in lovely Puerto Morelos, 20 minutes south of the Cancun airport. It’s a lovely and safe village right on the beach!

You’ll stay at the penthouse suites at Las Casitas, overlooking the Caribbean ocean! A few minutes walk to the north will have you at Casa Om, where the training is being held; a few minutes walk to the south is the lovely town of Puerto Morelos with events, shops and restaurants.

Best of all, a few steps from your home will have your toes in amazing turquoise Caribbean water. Just beyond the shore is the world’s second largest barrier reef, where you can snorkel and see extraordinary sea life!

At Casa Om, you can participate in as much of the training as you like; you can practice yoga twice a day, and sit in on lectures that include anatomy, history of yoga, customer service, communication, conflict resolution and more!

During the week, you will join us for amazing vegetarian meals twice a day, and on weekends, you will eat at Casa Om on Saturday morning and then enjoy the town’s restaurants on Saturday night and Sunday!

Excursions include swimming with whale sharks (they don’t bite!), the largest fish (they are not whales or sharks) in the ocean. Or how about swimming in a cenote? These are the freshwater caves and pools across the Yucatán Peninsula and the waters are said to be quite healing! (I can tell you that jumping in can be quite invigorating!) Or just relax on the beach and swim with turtles.

The Sterling Retreat includes:
– Pick up and drop off at Cancun Airport
– Penthouse accommodations at Las Casitas on the beach
– Gourmet vegetarian meals at Casa Om
– Mats and towels for yoga
– Laundry of all yoga clothing
– Two hot yoga classes each weekday; optional class on Saturday
– Participation in all lectures/training at Sterling Teacher Training (check dates for specific lectures) at Casa Om
– Bicycles and snorkel gear

Additional costs for:
– Snorkeling at reef
– Dinner on Saturday and all meals on Sunday
– Mexican cooking school
– Massage/spa treatments
– Raw chocolate class
– Shopping
– Your flight to Cancun

Costs are:
– $205 per person, per day, single occupancy
– $162.50 per person, per day, double occupancy

Start looking for flights now and let us know when you want to arrive and how long you want to stay! You are guaranteed to love it!

The Spring Challenge Begins Soon!

By Announcement

Sterling Hot Yoga Spring ChallengeThis challenge will be different than any other we’ve done before and you are going to love it!

Here are the steps:

STEP 1:  Choose the number of classes you will complete in the 30 day period:  15, 20 or 30.

STEP 2:  Choose your mix of class types — your challenge must include the Gold 90, Sterling 60 and Iron Hour. You get to pick how many of each class you will take.

STEP 3:  Choose a personal affirmation that you will commit to saying at least once during every class. Your challenge card will give you options — they include affirmations such as:

  • “I now achieve my goals with joy and laughter.”
  • “My gratitude is strong and constant.”
  • “I love who I am and whom I’m becoming.”

STEP 4:  You will be assigned a team. Work with your team members to encourage them to keep coming, to get encouragement, to work together, to make friends and to ensure success for all!

WHAT DO YOU WIN?

1.  If you complete your personal goal, you will receive a challenge T-shirt and you’ll be able to sign the Challenge Wall.

2.  If your team collectively completes more classes than any other team, your team gets two prizes:

  1. One person on the team will be randomly chosen to receive three months of free yoga!
  2. Your team gets to choose one person to receive three months of free yoga. That person can be in or out of your group. It can be whomever your team chooses. So now you are not just doing the challenge for yourself, or for your team. You’re doing it for someone you choose who needs the yoga!

THE FINE PRINT

1. Challenge begins on the first class on April 19 and ends after the last class on May 18, 2015.
2. Each person must complete a challenge card and keep it on file at the studio.
3. Participation will be confirmed by studio software — make sure to sign in for class!
4. All classes must be completed at SHY Mobile. Hot yoga classes completed at other locations will not apply to this challenge.
5. Teams will be randomly assigned by SHY staff.
6. Team members will be posted on the chalkboard.
7. Winners will be announced on May 23 after the 9:30 class. We will host a party at the studio for all challengers!

Tada-sana! Tree Pose Breakdown

By News

Lotus Pose Tree Pose How To Hot YogaTree pose and toe stand are the last two poses in the standing series of our Gold 90 and Sterling 60 classes. They seem fairly straightforward, but there are some aspects of the tree pose that bear clarification.

The tree pose that we do in our Gold 90 and Sterling 60 classes has the following purpose: To open up the hips, knees and ankles in preparation for toe stand, and eventually, the lotus position.

Compare the woman on the left doing lotus to the woman on the right doing tree pose in the photo below.

Notice how in both poses the feet are near the hip creases, knees are extended away from the center line of the body and feet are turned outward.

Putting your body into lotus can be challenging on the hips, knees and ankles, and like many poses, some people come to it relatively easily while others struggle for a long time to get there. Tree pose is a great way to help prepare the body for lotus.

Tree comes at a point in the series where your body is relatively warmed up. Your knees and hips and ankles have had the opportunity to open, and although your heart may be pounding, you are encouraged to slow down, focus and balance. Not such an easy thing to do!

Lotus Pose Tree Pose How To Hot YogaHere are the steps to execute the pose:

1.  Ground yourself in alignment.

2.  Pick up your right foot with your left hand and if you need to, hold your right knee with your right hand. Be careful of your knee and your ankle. At any step, if you feel discomfort, proceed with care. If you feel pain, back off.

The goal is to put your foot in your hip crease, but your body proportions may require you to place your foot in a different place!

Look at the images below: The first woman’s foot is on her leg and it may never be on her hip because her shin bone is relatively short and her hips aren’t yet open.

The second woman’s foot is super high on her costume, because her shinbone is really long! Both are doing the posture correctly for their body type and for the condition of their hips, knees and ankles. Tightness in any of these joints may keep you holding on to your foot, and that is perfectly okay!

Lotus Pose Tree Pose How To Hot Yoga

3.  Slowly, gently allow your knee to come down toward the floor. Now remember the lotus pose — the knee is positioned away from the center line of the body approximately 45 degrees — so in tree, it is absolutely appropriate to have your lifted leg positioned away from the body.

The ball and socket of your hip joint may never allow you to position your leg so that it’s parallel to the standing leg and by forcing it, you could injure your hip!

Look at this group shot of people doing tree pose — everyone is trying the right way; no one’s legs are parallel.  Not even close!

Lotus Pose Tree Pose How To Hot Yoga

4.  Eventually, when the hip joint and the hip flexors open up enough, you will have two legs in one line FROM THE SIDE like the photo on the left.

Lotus Pose Tree Pose How To Hot Yoga

5.  The last part of the pose is to find alignment on all planes. Stretch your spine up, and stretch your tailbone down to prevent your rear end from sticking out. Look in the mirror and work to get your shoulders level and hips level.

Avoid sinking into the standing hip. The yogi on the right is out of alignment — see how her shoulders are not level and her hips are not yet level? This is common especially when you have to hold your foot. But she’s working toward it and will be there soon!

If you are challenged by tree pose, that’s okay! Start slow, hold on to your knee if you need to, work slowly, take your time, focus on your breath and alignment as best you can. And know that you’ll be on the floor resting very, very soon!

Sterling Hot Yoga welcomes Jessie Weddell to Mobile!

By Announcement

Jess guest teacher sterling hot yogaJessie grew up in Fairfax, Virginia as an athlete-turned-dancer. She found Bikram Yoga in 2012 during a very difficult time in her life.

As soon as she started practicing several times a week she noticed tremendous benefits in her focus, passion and peace.

Over time through consistent practice, she was able to heal the damage done to her body and mind and knew she wanted to share that gift with others.

She completed Sterling Hot Yoga Teacher Training at Casa Om in October 2014 and continues to take every opportunity she can to expand her knowledge of the practice.

Jessie will be with us on and off for a few months. She will teach Gold 90, Sterling 60 and Iron Hour! Welcome, Jess!

Reggie Wilson Shares Inspirational Yoga Story

By News

Reggie inspirational yoga storyThis is Reginald Wilson. Reggie started practicing with us in August of 2014. In his introductory month, he practiced 22 times. Since then, he practiced, on average, about three times a week.

This Superbowl Sunday, February 1, Reggie felt a tightening of his chest. His wife insisted he go to the hospital and after several tests, the doctors determined that Reggie had 100% blockage in one of his arteries and he needed a triple bypass.

After the surgery, the doctor asked him what he had been doing and Reggie told him, “Sterling Hot Yoga.”

The doctor said that there’s a good chance the yoga saved his life! His heart had actually developed alternate routes around the blockage and the strength of his systems got him through the surgery with relative ease!

Reggie returned to his practice this week and he is taking it slow and following our one rule. We are thrilled that he is Sterling!

Do you have a friend or family member who needs inspiration to come to class? Share this story!

What’s your story? I bet you have one!