Bikram Hot Yoga is one of the newer forms of yoga, and it was introduced by accomplished yogi Bikram Choundury almost 30 years ago. This form of yoga requires you to perform breathing exercises and yoga poses in an environment that has a temperature of 105° Fahrenheit and a humidity level of about 60%. Bikram Hot Yoga can bring a wide range of benefits to your body and mind, but it is also known as a risky practice that can cause injuries.
How Bikram Hot Yoga Works
Typically, a Bikram Hot Yoga session lasts for 90 minutes, and you have to perform a series of 26 asanas during the session. Since it is considered a form of Hatha Yoga, Bikram Hot Yoga emphasizes the importance of breathing and meditation when performing each pose. The high temperature will make your muscles and joints more flexible, and it enables you to maintain difficult poses for longer periods of time.
Benefits of Bikram Hot Yoga
Since it involves extensive stretching of body parts and muscles, Bikram Hot Yoga can improve the flexibility of your body. The heat will loosen your muscles and joints, and you will be able to stretch them beyond their usual limits. Your muscles will become more toned and stronger, and you will also develop a stronger spine.
The high temperature will cause you to sweat profusely, and the sweating has a cleansing effect on your body. The toxins in your body will be flushed out through your skin, and you will become less susceptible to skin illnesses. Also, Bikram Hot Yoga is effective in promoting weight loss, because it can help your body achieve a more balanced metabolism.
It is known that Bikram Hot Yoga can improve blood circulation and strengthen heart health. Performing difficult poses in a high temperature gives you an excellent cardiovascular workout, which will make your heart more resistant to diseases. Additionally, Bikram Yoga can boost your immune system, because it increases the core temperature in your body and raises T-cell levels. High levels of T-cells can be beneficial to HIV/AIDS patients.
Practicing Bikram Hot Yoga gives you better discipline, focus and coordination. It is also a great way to relieve stress, because it can calm your mind and soul. Moreover, it enables you to gain better awareness of yourself.
Risks of Bikram Hot Yoga
The use of high temperature in Bikram Hot Yoga makes your body more vulnerable to dehydration, and you cannot load up on too much water because a full stomach will make it difficult for you to perform yoga poses. Also, since some of the poses are not easy to do, you may injure yourself while trying to complete them.
After you have stretched your ligaments to new limits, they may not be able to return to their original sizes and shapes, and this will result in the loosening of joints. You may also experience short-term side effects, such as nausea, dizziness, cramping and muscle weakness, while you are practicing Bikram Yoga.
Although it is a little risky, Bikram Hot Yoga is well-worth a try. It can improve your physical and mental health, and also help you recover from injuries and illnesses.