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Here are some testimonials from our yogis:

Matt Juliano, April 2022

Matt’s inspiring story begins in 2018. While working as a chef in Brooklyn, NY and living a not so healthy lifestyle,  Matt’s brother invited him to his first ever yoga class – a vinyasa session at Modo Yoga in West Village. “Everyone  was beautiful, and I was like this fat hairy dude. 45-minutes into the class, I was so tired I didn’t care anymore. My  self-consciousness melted away. I finished and felt amazing for a week!”  

During this period, Matt’s weight topped out at 225 pounds. He quit some of his bad habits, like alcohol, and  started some new ones including running and calisthenics. His mood quickly improved, his old clothes started to  fall off, and he lost 70 pounds. All the miles made his body so tight though that he couldn’t lie flat on the floor. He  recalls that after his 8-mile daily runs, “Everything hurt,” so during the outset of the 2020 pandemic, remembering  how great that first class felt, he tried video yoga classes in his parent’s clubhouse.  

Finally in 2021, he found Orlando Hot Yoga & Pilates. “I had never been to Bikram Yoga before. For the first time, I  spent the whole class looking at other people trying to figure out what to do.” A combination of Bikram and Hot  Pilates resulted in another 10-pound loss. But when he stopped coming, he gained back 20.  

Flash forward to March 2022. Matt came back to OHYP with resolve. It’s common for many students to try a 30- day challenge (attending 30-yoga classes in 30-days) when they want to reach a fitness goal. Matt took it a level  further completing 56-classes in his first 30-days back, and he has kept the pace into April. Many days include  doubles or even triples of Bikram 90 & 60, Hot Pilates, Hot Flow/Vinyasa, and even Yin.  

Matt sees benefits to each style. “I have tons of energy after Bikram. After vinyasa, I feel more mellow.” If he had  to name a favorite, it is vinyasa because, “It’s a hybrid of Bikram and Pilates, like calisthenics but more meditative.”  For those that want similar results, he recommends doing at least one class a day and multiple if possible. “During  the 2nd or 3rd class, I can get deeper into the postures.”  

Another of his recommendations is to reduce or eliminate notifications and tech-related disruptions. “There is a  beauty to sitting 60 or 90-minutes without a screen nearby.”  

At 31, Matt now weighs 165 pounds including new muscle mass, improved postures, and a new outlook on life.  BEFORE (5/20 & 2/22) AFTER (4/22) 

Mark O., March 14, 2017.

“After recent rotator cuff surgery, I came to Orlando to finish healing and enjoy the winter.   I had little movement in my arm, I was not sleeping due to the pain and I ate at least 6 ibuprofen on a good  day. I decided to have a massage and Maria talked me into trying bikram yoga.  After 10 weeks of  attending regular classes, I have negligible shoulder pain, I sleep all night and I can’t even tell you the last time I took an ibuprofen.I believe it comes from practicing bikram yoga.  It is better than the physical therapy I completed just before coming to Orlando. Bikram yoga  is healing and spirit raising.  Its not easy, but it is well worth the energy and time. You should try it, but only if you want to feel better.”

Michelle, 11 October 2012 What a difference a year makes! On February 27, 2011, I started Bikram yoga determined to get back in shape both physically and mentally. I weighed almost 300lbs and looked and felt miserable. I had practiced Bikram before and knew it was the key to regaining my health. My first month back, I completed 20 classes and felt the wonderful benefits right away. By the second month, I decided to try a 30 day challenge, which developed into a consistent daily practice over 365 days (386 classes in 365 days, 61 doubles, and 14 triples). Over the past year, I’ve lost 120 lbs, gained muscle, increased flexibility, can finally do “Awkward” (thanks Doug and Tammy), embrace “Triangle” instead of cursing it, breathe without huffing and puffing, realized stomach muscles do exist, enjoy deep sleep, and don’t sweat the little things. I come to class everyday because I want to, not because I have to. To be honest, the most difficult part is getting to class, not practicing. Traffic, appointments, family, friends, vacations, and work all had to be planned and juggled, but I made it happen. I have never once regretted coming to class. There have been times when I’ve been in a bad mood, not feeling the best, or just plain lazy and tired, but those feelings were always washed away at the end of every class. I want to thank ALL the wonderful teachers and fellow students who supported me along the way. Your kind words, encouragement, support, and friendship mean more than you will ever know. To those of you thinking about trying Bikram or starting your practice again, do it! It’s tough and it’s challenging, but in the end your body and mind will love and reward you for it. I hope to see you soon and I hope to see you often!

Terri, 9 October 2012
Bikram’s Hot Yoga West Orlando has produced an extreme makeover within me.  I started my yoga practice in May wearing a size 16 pants and weighing 205 pounds.  I was on regular anti-arrhythmic heart medicine and had visited the hospital 5 times in the first 2 months of the year due to atrial fibrillation. I slept an average of 2 hours at any given time only to have to calm myself to return to sleep.  I had to wear custom made orthotics in my shoes to walk comfortably or wear Birkenstocks on a daily basis to function.  I have an old knee injury from a dislocation from skating and refused surgery.  I also was seeing a chiropractic doctor several times a week for limping due to hip injuries and past car accident injuries affecting my spine.

I now weigh 170 pounds and wear a size 10.  I haven’t been on heart medicine for over two months and have avoided heart surgery.  I have had difficulty with my feet for years and now I can walk all day barefoot and even run on the beach barefoot and my knees, feet, and joints are very happy.  I have been working for months on opening up my joints to receive the full benefits that this yoga practice provides.  It took me several months to not being dizzy when attempting camel and now this is my favorite pose and it gives me the greatest benefit for my spine and heart.  I’ve heard instructors comment that the pose you like the least is probably the pose you need the most to make healthy long lasting benefits for your overall metamorphosis.  I’m sleeping now 4-5 hours at a time then returning to sleep easily.  I’m calmer now in stress full situations, and can truly say that it is the journey not the destination that matters.  I have increased strength, improved flexibility, and have seen healing from my many past injuries.  I’m able to breathe much deeper now and it has made it more enjoyable to sing at church. Being able to not have to stop and breathe but continue on during songs I previously had to take breaks.  I’ve learned to be more accepting of myself with all of my flaws in order to be effective in my journey, knowing that it is not about the destination but the obstacles along the way that shape and mold my essence. I’ve truly learned to appreciate each day and I have learned to dance in the rain. I had a previous accident with my motorcycle in the rain and was often tense and nervous when caught in bad weather.  Thanks to yoga and being able to calm my mind, I now drive without fear knowing that I’ve changed my body, mind, and spirit because of my yoga practice.  I’m truly blessed that my God has lead me through this path in my life and has helped me to step out of the boat and being able to adapt to whatever life may throw at me.  I’ll remain calm thanks to yoga.

I’ve missed practice at times trying to appease my husband, children, or others only to weaken myself.  Remember to always put yourself first.  If at first you don’t succeed, then try, try again.  I now realize that with this yoga practice I am more efficient and effective for all of those in my life because I’m taking care of myself in order to be of assistance to others.  Bikram’s hot yoga has truly altered my mind, body, and spirit.  I would highly recommend this practice and love to hear about your metamorphosis.  You truly reap what you sow and the time, energy, effort, planning, and finances are all worth the outcome.  I’m truly blessed practicing yoga here at Bikram’s Hot Yoga West Orlando and I have Maria Canella to thank for my positive future.  I look forward to continuing the healing process and would love to become a future instructor when I’m able to secure funding for such an adventure, as teacher training.

  1. I’m from Sydney, Australia where i do Bikram. Here in Orlando for work. Found Bikram Yoga West Orlando on the…

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    5 star review  This is Best Yoga Institute in Orlando , Florida. I really like to come for Hot Yoga 90 minutes clas and also the recently started " Hot Yoga Flow" Class. This class is super good and feels too relax. I personally like class by Yoga teacher "Mimi Simmons" , she is really good and helps us in all the postures and help us if we are doing wrong and whenever i come for her class i really enjoy. I never miss her class.

    thumb Veena A
    April 14, 2022

    1 star review  This is NOT yoga , Wednesday at 6:15 is the worse class I attended in my life , the instructor did not teach or show any pose just give fast instructions. the room is super bright and dirty. I requested my money back , TERRIBLE EXPERIENCE

    thumb Store 7101 Altamonte Springs, FL
    November 21, 2021

    5 star review  Maria and the gang are welcoming and make you feel like part of the community from day 1. Dad went in for a massage and was quickly convinced to try Bikram. He loved it so much then I started going too. 4 years later and we are hooked. From Bikram to hot Pilates and Yin Yoga, the beginner classes, to individual private workout sessions are for every”body”. See you in the hot room! Highly recommend. 10/10. Clean, comfortable, welcoming and professional.

    thumb Nathan Ochsenbein
    July 21, 2021

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