The perfect space to mingle

Interactive Classes

The perfect space to mingle

There’s no dearth of people who make a conscious attempt to follow their passion in Bangalore. A majority of them do this through evening classes, which are diverse enough to cater to a variety of interests.

Fitness freaks can indulge in a little early-morning yoga or take up zumba classes post work hours. The creatively-inclined also have plenty of options to choose from in terms of painting, sculpture and pottery classes. The market for cooking classes has also expanded exponentially in the last few years, largely due to the glamourous cooking shows that have taken television channels by storm.

But not everyone enrols himself in these classes simply to pursue an interest. For many, it’s a great escape at the end of a tough day at work and more importantly, it’s a place to meet new people. For professionals who come to the City on work, establishing a friend circle can be difficult. These classes, though, offer them the perfect space for that. College students and younger children — sometimes encouraged by their parents — are also taking to these classes for the same reason.

Given the professional demands and hectic schedules that most professionals have to deal with, it isn’t easy to socialise post work and meet new people. Sudhir, who is part of a theatre society, explains that many of the members enjoy the chance to interact with like-minded people. “Today’s fast-paced life makes it difficult to meet people outside your existing friend group and work crowd. Pursuing hobbies now seems to be a great way to break the monotony, meet people who like similar things and have similar interests,” he explains. “Frankly, the variety of options available in Bangalore now is crazy. From cycling clubs and climbing clubs to book clubs, Bangalore has it all,” he adds.

Naveen Chandra, a taekwondo instructor, has noticed a similar trend in his classes. He works with different demographics and explains that many of his younger students are encouraged to attend by their parents. “These days, the culture of playing with neighbourhood children on the streets doesn’t exist — which is why many parents encourage their kids to join classes. They meet new friends and this pushes up their spirits,” he says.

His adult students, he adds, generally join mainly to stay fit. However, he acknowledges that for those who are from out of town, such classes are the perfect forum to put out roots in Bangalore. “They join because they are interested in taekwondo but directly or indirectly, they end up making new friends. It’s an added benefit,” he explains
The chance to interact with a new group of people is a welcome change for localites as well.

Madhavi, who goes for a pilates class in her apartment complex in Koramangala, explains that the sessions serve as refreshing breaks. “I have a set group friends with whom I interact during and after work. But I didn’t know any of my neighbours very well — something that changed when I joined this class. We’re a small group and initially, were a little stiff with one another. But once we broke the ice, we got along very well,” she shares.

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