Looking for a way to stay warm in winter? How about a balmy 37-degree escape from the outside chill? No, this doesn’t involve buying a plane ticket but a relaxing session at a Bikram Yoga class.
Today marks International Yoga Day, and while most of us are familiar with the traditional types of yoga, Bikram Yoga is for those that like it hot.
Bikram Yoga was founded by Bikram Choudhury, a world-renowned Indian Yoga teacher. The technique consists of 26 yoga poses and breathing exercises that are performed in a ‘hot room’, heated between 37-40 degrees with 40% humidity.
This popular method to beat the chill has many benefits for your mind and body. The slow and focused movements in high temperatures have the potential to burn as many as 2,500 KJs in a 90 minute session. The workout is designed to engage holistically, every part of your body, stimulating your cardiovascular system, your nervous system and a range of ligaments. Bikram Yoga is a perfect way to stretch out your muscles and tone your body.
Like any form of exercise, Bikram Yoga has many health benefits including improved mental and physical health. Regular exercise has the power to allow you to sleep better, feel happier and improve the way your body functions.
Worried about what to expect in your first class? Be prepared to sweat. A lot. The high temperatures in the room may not be suitable to everyone. It is expected that you will lose salt and potassium so make sure you are well hydrated throughout the day before you arrive and have plenty of water on hand after your class. It is recommended to wear light clothing during the session and minimal products on your face as the hot temperatures will open up your pores and allow your skin to breathe.
Bikram Yoga isn’t for everyone. It’s not recommended for pregnant women, those with cardiovascular problems or other medical conditions. Make sure you get the all clear from doctor before trying out this form of exercise.