There’s no need to be afraid of Bikram Yoga, the original “hot yoga.” Frannie Rochat, owner of the new, welcoming Bikram Yoga Rye Brook, assures us that all classes are for beginners, and that you don’t have to be flexible or skinny, which some may have heard, to enjoy the program.
By Georgetta L. Morque
There’s no need to be afraid of Bikram Yoga, the original “hot yoga.” Frannie Rochat, owner of the new, welcoming Bikram Yoga Rye Brook, assures us that all classes are for beginners, and that you don’t have to be flexible or skinny, which some may have heard, to enjoy the program. And having a facility in our backyard, the Rye Ridge Shopping Center, should give you even more motivation.
Founded by Bikram Choudhury, Bikram Yoga is a series of 26 postures, practiced in a specific order, in a heated room. The classes are 90 minutes long, which Rochat says allows participants to move deeper into poses than they would in a 60-minute yoga class. Newcomers adjust to the heat, which Rochat explains helps stretch the muscles in a safer way. The studio temperature is 105 degrees with 40 percent humidity, so participants work up a sweat, which is detoxifying and also good for the skin. Bikram Yoga Rye Brook has a state-of-the-art filtered heating and ventilation system that regularly clears the air. The floor remains pristine.
A former fixed income trader, Rochat was first introduced to Bikram Yoga in London 18 years ago and was immediately taken by the practice. While she has practiced and taught other types of yoga, she was always drawn to Bikram. She exudes enthusiasm about its many therapeutic benefits, which include bringing fresh oxygenated blood to all parts of the body, healing old injuries, and strengthening muscles since the 50 percent of the practice is strengthening and 50 percent is stretching. “It helps you be aware of your body and how you move.” Since practicing Bikram Yoga, Rochat says her immune system is better and she no longer has allergies.
For many years, Rochat taught yoga in the area and even in her Rye home, yet she always wanted to teach Bikram Yoga. The challenge, however, was the commitment to a nine-week intensive teacher-training program in California. With four children, this seemed like an impossible venture, yet three years ago, with the help of her husband, family, and friends, she was able to fulfill her dream. Rochat is forever thankful to the Rye community for pitching in while she was away.
Opening her own studio was her next dream-come-true and the Rye Brook location presented the perfect opportunity. The studio is filed with light and the atmosphere, serene. There is a team of Bikram Yoga instructors on board and a full schedule of classes every day. Participants are encouraged to bring water and wear light clothing.
“Once you are here, all fears disappear and you will leave glowing,” says Rochat.
For more information, visit bikramyogaryebrook.com.