Hi, I’m Lesley, a BYL regular who happens to be the same age as Bikram, the founder of the yoga practise that goes by the same name! I came across Bikram Yoga Canary Wharf when it first opened, in 2009, experiencing my first class with Conny, the head teacher and studio Director. Before Bikram, a time I find hard to remember (!), I loved aerobics and step classes, along with the leotards, headbands and music! Hey, what was there not to love? Well, perhaps the way my body began to crumble when I reached 50, with the constant stress on my joints and cartilage.

I had polio as a child, and my right leg was especially affected, making it increasingly difficult to bear weight on it. As luck would have it, I came across an article on Bikram yoga and met a friend who was taking classes. She was highly enthusiastic about the benefits she was seeing in her own practise, so I decided to give it a try! That was in Vancouver, back in 2002, when a Bikram studio had opened near my home.

I was hooked by my first Bikram class and felt a tremendous sense of accomplishment at having survived that infamous heat! It wasn’t easy, but it fired up my resolve and I made it through! It was by far the best form of physical therapy I had ever tried. I’ve now been coming to the ‘torture chamber’ ever since! [Editor’s note, we generally avoid the use of torture in the class]. I’ve since then attended classes in Toronto, London (Ontario), Seattle, Paris, Rome, Barcelona, Dubai, and Adelaide (Australia)! They’ve all been great, and I can say every Bikram teacher I’ve ever met has been friendly and helpful. I’ve also made many friends through the Bikram yoga community around the world, and all would agree that whatever amount they pay for the chance to practise is immaterial compared to the huge return in a healthier and fun-loving life.

My son and daughter have witnessed firsthand the benefits that this life-changing practise have given me, and they are now regular practitioners as well! I am excited at the prospect of attending my grand-daughter’s first class with her in the future! She’s only 4 years old, but is showing signs of being a future yoga superstar, maybe even a Bikram teacher!