His latest book outdid the sale of copies of Harry Potter in the global market. He is the yoga guru to celebs of the likes of Michael Jackson Nixon Reagan Clinton, Indira Gandhi, Dharmendra, Madonna, Deepak Chopra, George Harrison, Pandit Ravishankar and John McEnroe to name a few. What is more, the strapping six and half footer Roland Kickinger, Mr Universe and the Terminator of Terminator 4 swears that yoga guru Bikram Choudhary's yoga technique has made a difference to his life.
Now, the universe's most sought after yoga guru Bikram Choudhary, and the man behind Bikram Yoga comes back to India with what he considers is the formula for True Fitness.
True Fitness, a sprawling 60,000 sq ft fitness, yoga and spa experience in Andheri (W) is the brainchild of Patrick Wee together with Bikram Choudhury has yoga as the base of a complete fitness regime, complete with a spa.
Launched amid fanfare at JW Marriott on Nov 26, the event was attended by the who's who of Bollywood. Jackie Shroff, Manisha Koirala, Anil Kapoor, Gulshan Grover, Leena Chandawarkar, Bappi Lahiri with family, Jatin Pandit, Meghna Naidu, Sudhanshu Pandey, Rahul Dev, Bappa Lahiri, Chandrachud Singh, Hard Kaur, Shibani Kashyap, they were all there to cheer Bikram's homecoming with True Fitness.
"Bikram Yoga is used to treat people with chronic diseases and we explain the mechanism behind yoga and how it helps prevent chronic diseases. We extensively research it with NASA and therein lies the authenticity of it," explains Bikram Choudhary. "I am happy I am back home, but it took a visionary like Patrick Wee from Asia to bring me back to my home. No Indian thought of it," says Bikram Choudhary., talking of True Fitness.
Keeping in mind the comfort of the urban fitness buff, the 60,000 square feet fitness, yoga and spa centre offers you a complete rejuvenating experience in the lap of luxury, along with a health food café among others.
Equipped with international facilities including state-of-the-art Cardio Machines by Life Fitness®, Power Plate® workout area – the accelerated fat burning method, Aerobics Studios, Resistance and Free Weight Area, Steam & Sauna Rooms, a dedicated Women's Work-out Area, and Bikram Hot Yoga, a scientifically designed style of yoga by Bikram Choudhury.
A BACKGROUNDER ON THE PEOPLE BEHIND TRUE FITNESS
The founder of the worldwide Yoga College of India, Bikram Choudhury, comes back to India, to set up his Bikram Hot Yoga Centre, as an integral part of True Fitness, founded by the Singapore based Patrick Wee, one of the biggest names to reckon with Internationally in the business of Health.
As part of the expansion plans across Asia, the True Group will launch their first ever centre in India, at a mall in Andheri West, Mumbai, on the 26th of November 2008, with an all-in-one centre offering Fitness, Spa and Bikram Hot Yoga.
Bikram Choudhury introduced a new style of yoga, involving guidance from a U.S. certified Bikram Hot Yoga instructor by a specific dialogue, that pumps the mind, body and spirit via a 90-minute session through 26 postures and two breathing exercises, and all these while in a studio that is preheated to a minimum temperature of 41 degree Celsius. A practice of the ancient art of Indian yoga that incorporates a steam-room type setting, participants are pushed to the max with a focus on deep and heavy breathing, challenging poses, combined with sweltering heat. The trend has flourished in recent years, and is a fantastic mind and body workout. Says the enigmatic Bikram Choudhury, "The more crises the world goes through, the more they are going to feel the need for yoga, to achieve a sense of well being and to calm body, spirit and mind." Beginning with his first studio San Francisco in 1973, it has grown to over 900 studios across the United States of America and this is the first Center in India brought in by the True Group.
Patrick Wee is the founder and Group Chief Executive Officer of Asia's leading fitness, yoga and wellness network, the True Group. He is the son of Wee Chong Jin (former Chief Justice of Singapore) and a lawyer by training. Patrick introduced and revolutionized the business of Yoga in Singapore with the opening of True Yoga in 2004. The subsequent 4 years saw the extension into other fitness, spa and aesthetics businesses in Singapore as well as the establishment of the True Group's presence in regional countries such as Malaysia, Thailand, Taiwan and India. The True Group has built a strong regional brand and the concepts cater well to the fitness and wellness industry in Asia.
The True Group, intends to live up to its promise in being the only complete fitness lifestyle centre in Asia, offering the best in yoga, fitness, spa and aesthetics treatments under one umbrella. Since its establishment in 2004, the True Group has grown to be one of the largest fitness, yoga and wellness groups in Asia with more than 100,000 members across the region, offering a complete approach to health and well-being.
In March 2008, Dubai International Capital (DIC) acquired a significant minority stake in the True Group. A wholly-owned subsidiary of Dubai Holding, DIC manages an international portfolio of diverse assets that provide its stakeholders with value growth, diversification, and strategic investments. The partnership marked a milestone for the Group as DIC's first private equity investment in Asia to enable further growth of the group's operations and expansion internationally.
Currently, with the True Group's presence in five countries, namely India, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan and Thailand, spanning over 25 centres and more than 700,000 square feet of space, the Group is aiming to grow to 100 centres in the next 5 years across new territories such as the Middle East, establishing the True Group as a truly global wellness brand. Also, for the first time in India, Bikram Hot Yoga – the yoga practiced by Hollywood Superstars such as Madonna, Matthew McConaughey, Sharon Stone, George Clooney, etc. – will also be making its debut at True Fitness!