2012 Student of the Year

Suzette Dement

TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF.
Well, I am a wife, mother and grandmother. If you have heard me speak, you know I am from the south, not Texas, but I have been in Texas more than 30 years.
WHAT BROUGHT YOU AND BRINGS YOU BACK TO BIKRAM YOGA?
I had been practicing yoga a couple of years at home using books, magazines and DVD's as my instructors, but knew I needed more intensity and expertise. I was intimidated by Bikram yoga, but the Bikram studio was the closest one to my house so I gave it a try. What kept me coming back at first was simply the fact that I am not a quitter! It was so hot and so much more difficult than I had thought possible. However it is like our teachers say, if you have a posture that you dread every session, your body needs it. I dreaded the entire standing series!
HOW OFTEN DO YOU PRACTICE?
Five days a week
WHAT, IF ANY PHYSICAL ISSUES DID YOU HAVE?
Only the normal aches and pains associated with inflexibility and muscular weakness. After practicing Bikram for a few months, no more aches and pains.
WHAT ARE THE GREATEST BENEFITS OF YOUR PRACTICE?
My body does not dictate what I am able to do. Peacefulness.
HOW HAS THE PRACTICE CHANGED YOUR LIFE, HEALTH, EMOTIONAL WELL BEING?
As our teachers tell us, if you can control your emotions in the hot room, you can control your emotions outside the hot room under life's duress. Not only do I now tell my body what to do (mostly it obeys), now I tell my monkey mind what to do also!
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PART OF BIKRAM YOGA?
Like others who attempt to answer these questions, this is the most difficult. The synergy of the physical and mental that the practice demands is so rewarding and beautiful. This would be enough. But in addition to this, we at BYSA have teachers who invest themselves in our practices with no reservations. Every time I practice, I try to give as much as my teacher gives, which is always a challenge! Of course, it all starts with the devotion of Lisa and Steve who consistently demonstrate respect for the practice and for each practitioner.