This Saturday, I went to a yoga class, which is pretty normal for me.
This Saturday, I got naked and did a yoga class. That is not so normal.
Let me start off by answering the two questions that I know are running through your mind right now: Yes we were completely naked, and yes we did downward dog.
Next let me give you a piece of advice: do not show up late because if you do, you will get stuck having to go in the front row. In my case, right in front of a good looking guy.
So why did I do this?
A few months ago, I read about Jenny Sansouci’s experience at a naked yoga class, and I decided I needed to give it a try. I’m not sure why the idea appealed to me so much, but I think it just seemed like a really interesting way to get out of my comfort zone. I became dead set on it and started looking around to see where I could take a class.
The closest one I could find to Halifax was Yogi Bare in Toronto. That was fine by me because there is no way I would go to a naked class in Halifax- the city is way too small for that!
Since I knew I’d be coming to Toronto for my spiritual roadtrip, I figured this was the perfect time to do it, so on Saturday I went to a class.
Here’s how it went down.
I arrived at the studio, which is actually a gym in a hotel. I think the place Jenny went to was a studio specifically geared to naked yoga, but this one was just a room in an other wise fully clothed gym.
To not freak out the regular gym goers, we actually went into the yoga room with our clothes on.
I was pretty nervous when I first got into the room, and I kind of just lied on my mat and closed my eyes because I was not ready to make eye contact with a room full of people who were about to see me totally naked.
The instructor came into the room, and to begin the class she asked us to stand at the front of our mat and begin to deepen our breath. We still had our clothes on at this point, so I was thinking “did I get this wrong? Is it just regular yoga?”
Nope, not regular yoga. She then instructed us to check in and see what level of undress we would be comfortable with.
Okay well clearly I would be comfortable with no level of undress, but that was not the point!
I didn’t want to just strip down naked if everyone else around me kept some clothes on, so I was trying to subtly look around and see what the general consensus was.
The general consensus was no clothing at all, so that’s what I went with.
We started by sitting cross legged on the mat and doing some neck stretches, and I was congratulating myself for how normal and actually comfortable I felt.
Then I heard the dreaded words: “please come to your hands and knees.” Any hopes I had that we would do more conservative postures went right out the window.
We did a 75 minute vinyasa flow, and it was exactly the same as any other class I’d ever been to, except for the clothing.
The teacher was professional and no mention was made of our nakedness. We did sun salutations, twists, forward folds, and even happy baby pose! Do you know what happy baby pose is? If not, google it, and now imagine having to do that naked in a room full of people!!
I won’t say that I ever feel completely comfortable during the class, but it really wasn’t that bad! It is amazing how the awkwardness of a situation can just fall away when you fully accept and open to it. If I had of been trying to cover up or avoid certain poses, it would have made the class a lot harder; fully going for it made me so much more comfortable.
I’m really glad I did it because trying new things is so fun and showing yourself that you can be vulnerable and be just fine is awesome. I don’t think I’ll do it again though just because it doesn’t seem necessary.
Would I recommend it? It depends- I’m such a huge believer in the importance of intention over action. What I mean is, in terms of the impact that actions have on you, I believe that why you are doing them is so much more important than what you actually do. One person might go to this class and feel more liberated than they ever have in their lives, while someone else might not be affected at all. It’s not the class that has the effect, it’s the person.
If you’re curious, try it out! Honestly, it’s kind of cool to be able to say I did it. If nothing else, it’s going to be a really funny story to share with friends.