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Local Locomotion – Issue 3

When Nexus asked me to head to a yoga class and write a review on the experience, my tense, burnt-out, jaded fifth-year ass that now can’t sink more than 8 cans without a 2-day hangover, I thought it sounded like a brilliant idea. I mean, I am something of a yogi, if you consider a yogi to be a white girl prone to the occasional 15-minute Youtube power sesh with a Sanskrit tat just visible above some ludicrously overpriced Lululemons, and someone who once camped out at a yoga festival and actively enjoyed it, without even joining the crowds in a joint or mushroom sampling to guide my spiritual development. So, in other words, my qualifications would say I’m the right gal for the job.

You don’t need to know what the fuck a shavasana is to know that yoga has exploded in popularity throughout the modern world, with studios popping up in every corner of the globe to appropriate Indian culture wherever there are suburban housewives with money. And money can be key, because at $25 a pop, the class I went to wasn’t cheap. That’s approximately 15 meals if you’re a noodle connoisseur/professional student such as myself. 

I’ve tried my fair share of classes throughout Hamilton as well as through the web, and though some studios are more memorable than others, I can’t say I ever HAVEN’T enjoyed a practice. After all, yoga was not actually designed to be measured by aesthetics like whether the studio has a Monstera, if the sequence of poses slaps hard, or how good your bum looks in leggings; rather, it’s always a good session if you get some deep breathing in and snuggle into that blissful, relaxing state of forcefully forgetting that you’re three weeks behind schedule on uni work or whatever other bullcrap is occupying your brain juice.

With that said, what the fuck could be a cosier excuse to boycott your workload than gravity-defying yoga, right?

I have actually been to High Above before, so my chances of going into the session incognito were dashed when the instructor recognised me as the prodigy student all the papers talked about, back when my friend and I did that little stint at pole-dancing for beginners. Much, much harder than it looks by the way; gals that work the pole deserve a big fuckin’ tip for athletic endurance alone. 

Mixing yoga with a pole-dancing studio may sound a little conflicting, but rest assured, you won’t be incorporating any lubed-up metal in your downward dogging. The prop that was involved, however, was some silky, hammocky thing suspended from the ceiling. And let me tell you, it was every bit as fucking fun as it looked like it was going to be. 

I would probably say aerial yoga isn’t quite the title for it – expect a session with lots of stretching and circus trapeze-like antics all in one. But put together in a way that’s definitely for beginners, no prior experience in yoga nor circus acrobatics necessary. 

I had super tight hammies and a knotted back from my lil’ bitch attempts in the UniRec weightsroom. We all know we’re supposed to stretch, but I for one can’t miss the opportunity to flex complaints about quad pain from that ruuuuthless gym sesh to prove to everyone that I do, in fact, gym. The best antidote for pain in those gigantic ripped muscles like mine is a session much like this; someone else telling you what to do so you don’t let yourself off easy on a deep, full-body stretch that really gets into the lower bod. 

The hammock functions much like a multi-use tool. It can be used to stretch and swing your legs out like a perpendicular can-can dancer, act as an aid during a classic cobra backbend pose, and provide a good massage into the deep muscles of your back. I did find that sports bras purchased five years and two cup sizes ago are probably not the recommended item of clothing, with an incidental boob slippage taking place while upside down and splay-legged. It was handled, I think the other ten or so people in the room didn’t spot the freebie, but I’m telling myself everyone else was probably focussing on restraining their own nipples anyway so suuurely I’m in the clear. I remember thinking more than once that aerial yoga would be a fucking great idea after a couple of wines, but as much as I’m all about #freethenip, the slippage may have convinced me otherwise. 

The best part by far was the last ten minutes or so. We were instructed to lay down in our hammocks like giant infants in silky cocoons, while the instructor walked around and handed-out lavender-scented eye pillows that smelled like nana’s house, and as the absolute cherry on top, offered a little push for anyone that wanted to swing about while they meditated. Someone was 110% snoring – there were some accusations thrown around, I think the investigation concluded it was probably the hubby that got dragged along when there was UFC to be watched – and I can’t blame them whatsoever. That shit was the most relaxing thing I’ve experienced since my Studylink payments were revived for the new year. 

I’ve always been a big fan of trying new shit out, and somewhere along the line I became one of those person who puts “interested” on a shitload of Facebook events that I never attend, or signs up to a bunch of commitments then later ceebs myself out of doing them. This served as a good little reminder to myself that even something as little as trying a new kind of exercise or going somewhere that isn’t home, uni, or the supermarket is a good way to provide some relief when demotivation kicks in and monotony takes the wheel. It’s so bloody easy to feel holed into a boring routine. 

Trying something new to spice it up is like a shot of caffeine in the morning. It’s necessary for enjoying life. Sure, finding a new experience isn’t always cheap, but maybe shelling out for a new experience to spice up the monotony of existence is a justified form of what the bloggers these days like to call “self care.” 

I know we all shit on Hamilton as a location that lacks much inspiration or excitement of any form. But maybe that can be a good thing, because when we do find it, we don’t take it for granted. We’re so used to thinking this city sucks balls that when we find a little gem of an experience, we’re quite genuinely, rather adorably impressed. We haven’t become immune to excitement, because our impression is that Hamilton is starved of it. 

So take this as a reminder to seek out something new; paintballing, bowling, whisky tasting, an art exhibition, whatever floats your boat. None of us can travel right now, so maybe it’s time to start supporting our locals and seek local adventures in this little shit-hole we like to call home.