When I first did yoga fifteen years ago, I recall peaceful music, gentle moves with kind corrections and a sense of relaxation. And I liked it.
But now it all seems so agro. Hot yoga, spin yoga and flow yoga to Lady Gaga. By the time I make it to the aptly named Corpse pose, I'm usually so relieved and exhausted, I fall sound asleep. I'd done Downward Facing Dog a few times, usually on the way to other poses, but it's been the base/rest pose for the last four classes I've attended. Call it what you want, but when my arms are shaking uncontrollably and sweat is dripping from my nose, I'm not relaxed.
The intentions I set for the class should be larger than me, but instead they've become desperate prayers to survive each class without hurting or embarrassing myself.
I have no shame in going to child's pose, for the entire class if necessary, but that's when the gentle corrections turn admonishing. "Rest until you catch your breath," quickly becomes, "you can rejoin the group at any time...how about now."
My last class, the one involving Lady Gaga, came complete with a teacher that counted how long you had to hold the pose, much like a new age aerobics class. Because that's restorative.
I've made a pledge to myself to attend class once a week. The past four weeks have been at four different studios. Sure, there are many types of yoga, and perhaps a bit of education would help. For now, I'll keep broadening my yoga experiences until I find the right fit.