Hot yoga, what is the deal with it?
by Healthy Homestead Team
A week ago
The moment you enter the studio, you start sweating. You are probably thinking, this is it, this is how I will shed all those extra pounds. Hot yoga is the latest craze among celebrities and yoga practitioners. There is only one difference between hot yoga and regular yoga, and that is the temperature of the room. The class is held in a room heated to 105 F, and has a humidity of 40%. Embrace the heat, and you will enjoy the benefits.
Benefits of hot yoga
Those who are devoted yoga students, say that hot yoga has all kinds of benefits. The main one is detoxification, as you will sweat more and eliminate more toxins out of your body. Now, there is no clear study showing this is true. But sweating, and then drinking more water are two elements that improve detoxification.
Another benefit of hot yoga is the heat itself. Thanks to the heat, you can go a little more deeply and safely into the postures. This way, you are working in a more safe environment.
Last, but not least, if you want a more intense workout and develop strength and flexibility, hot yoga will help you achieve that.
Hot yoga styles
There are many different styles for practicing hot yoga. The most popular one is Bikram yoga, practiced at certified studies. Some consider Bikram yoga to be the original incarnation of the hot yoga trend.
What is Bikram yoga? It is a 90 minute program that consists of a series of different standing and stretching postures. Because of the heat, and the demanding nature of the poses, your heart will raise, and you will exercise your muscles.
Moksha Yoga is another form of hot yoga. The main difference is the “green principle”, which means incorporating things like energy-efficient heating and sustainable flooring.
How to prepare for hot yoga?
The key to success for hot yoga is to go in prepared. You cannot be fully aware of what to expect. But it is important to prepare. For starters, that means going in well-hydrated. Drink enough water throughout the day, and before the workout to stay hydrated.
Try not to eat much before the class, as you will have hard time performing the postures. Last, but not least, make sure to replenish the lost minerals with a fortified drink after the workout.
Should You Try it?
First and foremost, hot yoga is not for everyone. The intensity of the postures, along with the hot environment, have the potential to cause heart-related illness.
Working out in a hot room can also throw off your body’s internal temperature, which will result in dehydration and heat exhaustion. There are situations when you should avoid hot yoga:
- If you have heart disease
- If you have problems with dehydration
- People with heat intolerance
- People with a history of a heart-related illness
How to practice safely?
We touched on a couple of topics how to prepare for hot yoga class. But here is a more detailed guide how to practice hot yoga safely.
- Drink water before, after, and during class to keep hydrated
- You can drink water with electrolytes for even more hydration and replenishing minerals
- Do not come to the class on an empty stomach. While you should not come with a full stomach as well, it is best that you have a meal two hours before the workout
- Be aware of the potential illness caused by working out in a hot room
- Do not try to power through if you cannot tolerate the heat. If it gets too hot for you, get outside of the room
- Know your body, and how sensitive you are to heat
- Pace yourself, ease into it, do not do too much at once