Despite the numerous health benefits of yoga, which include improved flexibility, stress reduction, improved sleep, and muscle strengthening; The exercise can be done in a variety of ways and styles, each with its own set of advantages.
One of the most recent yoga trends is hot yoga, which is frequently incorporated into other practices. Hot yoga is something that Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, does and has said is one of her favorite ways to exercise. Alex Rodriguez, Jessica Alba, and Hailey Bieber also do hot yoga.
However, experts assert that not everyone is a good fit for hot yoga and that the practice’s central focus on heat does not stem from yoga’s spiritual origins. According to Loren Fishman, MD, a professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation at Columbia University and the medical director of Manhattan Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Heat isn’t even said to enhance yoga’s spirituality, which is, after all, a major selling factor for many.
What is “hot yoga”?
Any type of yoga practiced in a heated environment is considered hot yoga. “Brett Larkin, a certified yoga instructor and the founder of Uplifted Yoga, explains that these kinds of environments typically range in temperature from 90 to 105 degrees Fahrenheit.” According to Larkin, it can be done alongside standard yoga poses or during “rigorous power yoga styles for an intense workout.” Any other type of yoga, including hatha, vinyasa, or yin, can be used to experience hot yoga.
What distinguishes hot yoga from regular yoga?
Hot yoga is all about sweating, whereas many traditional yoga practices aim to improve strength and flexibility, center oneself, or connect one to the spiritual roots of yoga mentioned earlier.
According to Larkin, “the originator of this concept was Indian-born American yoga guru, Bikram Choudrey.” He decided to heat his studio to 105 degrees while performing several essential yoga postures in order to bring the experience of practicing yoga outdoors in India to his students. According to Larkin, “hot yoga exploded in popularity” as a result of the ferocious approach. Today, numerous studios provide heated yoga classes in a variety of styles.”
Fishman claims that power yoga is almost always practiced as a hot yoga technique as well as Bikram yoga, which is practiced in a heated environment. He elaborates, “The only difference between hot yoga and non-hot yoga is thermal.” It can be done outside in the humid jungles of Sri Lanka, but it can also be done inside, even in the snowy Himalayas, no matter what the temperature outside is.”
What does hot yoga accomplish?
Hot yoga is practiced for a variety of reasons, just like any other type of yoga. According to Fishman, “some studies do show that perspiring is good for the skin.” Many people particularly enjoy the sweating aspect of it. When compared to more conventional yoga practices, a vigorous cardio workout that burns a lot of calories comes along with all that sweat. According to Fishman, an hour of hot yoga burns an average of 330 calories. However, he adds that “quickly (and sensibly) replaced by hydrating” is typically the cause of the majority of weight loss associated with hot yoga. Even yet, he claims that “a number of studies have demonstrated that practicing yoga in a heated environment does result in a faster increase in strength.”
Improved breathing techniques are another advantage of hot yoga. According to Larkin, “I think the overlooked benefit of hot yoga is that it forces practitioners to have a greater awareness of their breathing.” Yoga practitioners are forced to become more in tune with their breath and perform poses in a heated environment, which necessitates greater stamina and endurance.
In addition, Larkin explains that “sweating during hot yoga may also facilitate the release of toxins from the body.” Many people discover that being in a heated atmosphere warms up their muscles, enabling them to stretch into positions with more flexibility.
Who ought to avoid hot yoga?
Larkin cautions that “hot yoga is not for everyone” and to “always check with your healthcare provider before engaging in it” despite these advantages. According to the Mayo Clinic, some of the practice’s potential negative effects include an increased risk of heat stroke and heat exhaustion. Additionally, it has been demonstrated that hot yoga can exacerbate asthma, so it is not recommended for pregnant women or asthmatics. According to Fishman, anyone with a heart condition should also steer clear of it. He explains that heat might be problematic because it causes blood vessels to enlarge and your heart to work harder.