Bikram Yoga: Deal or No Deal?


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is Bikram Yoga? Wikipedia answers: Bikram Yoga is a system of 
yoga that Bikram Choudhury synthesized from traditional hatha yoga. techniques and popularized beginning in the early 1970s. Bikram’s classes run exactly 90 minutes and consist of a set series of 26 postures and 2 breathing exercises. Bikram Yoga is ideally practiced in a room heated to 105°F (≈ 40.6°C) with a humidity of 40%, and is the most popular form of hot yoga (a series of yoga poses done in a heated room)

I’m a huge fan of yoga, but I’ve never attempted hot yoga before.  When I saw the Groupon for $39 for 10 classes at Atlanta Hot Yoga, I pounced on the opportunity to try something new and for a great deal!

Monday night was my first class.  I’ve heard lots of different  people give me their opinions, not all good, so I was a little nervous.  My sister said the heat made it difficult for her to breathe, and I already had apprehension over working out in a heated environment.  To the ear, it just doesn’t sound appealing.  One of the many reasons why I enjoy yoga in the first place is that I don’t sweat like I do when I work out.

However, when you first walk into the room, the temperature is slightly higher than normal, but not uncomfortable.  It is a 90 minute session, and as time passes, the temperature increases until it reaches 105 degrees Fahrenheit.  Your body is slowly acclimated to the heated environment.  The instructor has built-in water breaks and does every position twice so if you are new, you can watch and then imitate or if you fall out of the position, you have another chance to try it again before the class moves to another position.

While none of the positions were new to me nor were they extremely difficult for me, I found myself extremely sore the next door.  I think the heat helped to loosen and relax my muscles so I could hold maintain the different positions much longer than I would normally.  I highly recommend yoga fans to try hot yoga.  It’s not something I would do normally, but it’s always good to change-up your work out routine.  Plus, hot yoga is an excellent way to get rid of any bloated feelings because you will literally sweat out all your water weight by the end of the session.  (If I didn’t mention this before, I would drink lots of liquids the day of your class to prepare for the amount of sweating you’ll be doing).  In many ways, it’s a detoxify work out.

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