Monday, April 16, 2007

the tale of two classes, part zwei

Despite the fact that I stated that I will join the next week BodyBalance class, I found myself shamelessly in the next available one: on Saturday. This time, not the instructor who hates me, but a guy in the class. He doesn't really hate me, per se, but weirdly looking at my poses longer (and more pretentiously) than he probably should.

In the locker room, he started a conversation, "So. I assume you have been taking the BodyBalance class like ever." I coyly said, "Nah. Today's only my second.." It's true and I continued, "I do take a lot of Yoga classes, though.." And the guy, God bless him, and I don't know whether he has been to one of Yoga classes or not said, "Yeah. It's similar, right?"

Similar? Well, BodyBalance was conceived using Yoga as one of the ingredients. BodyBalance uses a bit of Yoga postures and technique, but similarity is not really the key though.

If Yoga and BodyBalance were siblings, Yoga would be Nicky, BodyBalance would be Paris. Of the Hiltons.

Yoga is the more subtle, subdued, off-the-spotlight sister. She is also (allegedly) the smarter one or the one with more brain. She is quiet, shy, and often being misunderstood. She looks boring, conventional, but actually tough to break.

I know a lot of people who see Yoga with one of their eyes closed (this is an Indonesian idiom, means taking something not seriously). But believe me, Yoga is one of the toughest exercise forms ever invented, if you do it seriously and correctly. I always left the class with sweat all over and muscles being worked.

Yoga streches a lot, trains your flexibility, balance, breathing technique and concentration. It helps you fix your posture. It even helps me making the most of my workouts, now.

Now BodyBalance is the spotlight-and-tabloid-hogging, (allegedly) hip, loud sister. She is current and up-to-date. If she walks, the soundtrack of her walk would be like the tracks from the current top 40s. She also likes breaks some rules and is relatively easy-to-break.

Since it's borrowing some routines in Yoga, BodyBalance trains flexibility and balance as well. However, I don't think that you can get most of Yoga's benefit by solely doing BodyBalance. Just because positions were not hold long enough, concentration is not that important, and the breathing is far too fast.

So which do I prefer, then. I prefer hanging out with Yoga most of my time, and adding (adding! not substituting!) it with BodyBalance once in a while. After all, it never hurts when we hang out with the (allegedly) cooler one once a week (I still think Yoga is much cooler because it's more challenging).

Last sentence. Yesterday, at tennis, I tried to apply basic Pranayama while hitting the balls. And what do you know, I hit a lot of pretty good groundstrokes! I've never hit pretty good ones before. And I played for 1 hour, and did just fine!

I owe you one, Nic.

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