why is hot yoga one of the most popular yoga styles in the world?

hot yoga attracts people because of the unique heat element and because of the set sequence of postures. hot yoga is a yoga that’s practiced in a room heated to 40 degree celsius while most yoga styles are practiced in normal room temperature. heat helps by promoting sweat faster than other styles of yoga especially for beginners. a set sequence allows your body to gradually adjust and eventually get deeper into the postures. hot yoga poses are mostly static with rest in between suitable for all levels particularly for beginners.

what are the benefits of the heat in hot yoga?

heat in the room helps by promoting more sweat and thus flushing toxins from your body. heat also helps loosening up tendons and ligaments in your body allowing you to get deeper into postures and prevent injuries. the heated environment helps to raise your heart rate, which in turn means you burn more calories.

how will I feel after my first couple of hot yoga classes?

the first class, for most beginners, is generally challenging. this is because you are not used to the temperature in the room. it usually takes 2-3 classes for you to adjust your body to the room temperature and enjoy the heat. it is also not unusual to feel nauseous or dizzy during your first hot yoga class. usually the problem is that you did not drink enough water. in the heated yoga room, your body needs adequate water to allow perspiration to release heat from the body. it is estimated that one needs around 2 litres to allow for a comfortable 90-minute hot yoga class.
you might feel a bit disoriented or even sleepy; this is most likely because your body has begun to cleanse itself as a result of the hot yoga class. this sleepiness and feeling of disorientation will disappear after a few classes, after your body has become stronger and used to the exercise. try to rest more, especially the night before your hot yoga class. this will make you feel more energized throughout the yoga class and the rest of your day.
you might also feel sore or stiff the day after your first class. don’t worry about this too much or let it keep you from coming back. even if you feel stiff and sore, you can practice hot yoga. in fact, the feeling will generally go away once you warm up. this is because your body starts expelling lactic acids by profuse sweating.

will hot yoga help me lose weight and tone my body?

yes. yoga is also known as an aerobic exercise. the use of breath and heat (created by internal and external sources) combining with yoga poses increases heart rate, metabolism, stimulates elimination, and reduces food cravings. it is estimated that you will burn in between 400-700 kcal per 90-minute yoga class. many hot yoga poses work all muscles and burn fat resulting in a toner
and stronger body. if you are on a weight loss path, make sure you also focus on the dietary aspect, as proper diet is the biggest contributor to weight loss.

is yoga only for flexible people?

no, not at all; yoga lessons are even highly recommended when you are somewhat inflexible. yoga poses increase flexibility in all parts of your body which enables oxygen to reach deeper into joints, ligaments, and into overall blood circulation.

should I practice hot yoga while menstruating?

it is perfectly safe to do hot yoga when menstruating. inverted postures are normally the postures to be avoided during menstruation, but there are no inverted postures in hot yoga. hot yoga is very good for toning the reproductive system as it directly affects the reproductive organs and the endocrine glands, pituitary, pineal and thyroid gland in particular. women’s cycle becomes more regular with complaints of menstruating pain and pms decrease.

should I practice if I have high blood pressure?

first consult your physician. listen to your body and don’t push too hard in any of the hot yoga poses the first couple of classes. yoga poses that one should be more cautious with include back-bending, standing bow pulling, cobra, balancing stick, locust and camel.

should i practice hot yoga if i have asthma, emphysema or bronchitis?

yes, hot yoga can be good for you in several ways. it is done in a warm room which promotes the relaxation of your muscles and nerves. furthermore it is the type of exercise that you can do with as little or as much intensity as appropriate for your needs.

what are the benefits of hot yoga?

weight loss
the systematic use of breath and internal heat increases metabolism, induces sweat, stimulates elimination, and reduces food cravings, resulting in weight loss. one hot yoga class can burn in between 400-700 kcal.

strength and flexibility
with regular asana practice (postures), weak muscles are strengthened; tight muscles become more flexible bringing balance to the body. by learning how to breathe properly during hot yoga, the mind is able to better focus, bringing strength and flexibility to both body and mind.

practiced dynamically, (hot) yoga raises the heart rate and increases the circulation of oxygen-rich blood to every cell in the body. it increases blood circulation to the joints, connective tissues, and internal organs. asanas (postures) create opening and spaciousness so blood can go to places that are generally closed and tight.

detoxification (mind and body)
by breathing deeply and deliberately, stale air is removed from the lungs. heat generated externally and internally helps to induce sweat, detoxify your skin, and increases circulation by raising your heart rate.

practicing (hot) yoga postures brings a great sense of well being. learning how to breathe through a stressful posture translates into dealing with stressful situations with calm and grace in your daily life.

breath control
by practicing breath/movement coordination, we learn to focus the mind. over time it becomes possible to maintain a deep, consistent breath throughout an asana practice, regardless of the level of difficulty or the discomfort. in this manner, (hot) yoga teaches us that breath is a tool to help control our state of mind, regardless of the daily stresses we encounter.

overall fitness
the practice of asana (postures) is a rare physical activity that promotes wellness in body and mind. when practiced with mindfulness, (hot) yoga is an exercise system that will reduce the imbalances that lead to injuries and complications later on in life.

reduces stress
stresses in our daily lives have a direct impact on our body affecting our digestion, circulation, immunity and emotions. prolonged stress has been proven to lead to serious diseases. a regular (hot) yoga practice calms the body and mind, rebalances the nervous system, boosts the immune system and detoxifies the body.

what is pilates?

a gentle, non-aerobic exercise method, which lengthens and strengthens the muscles, and improves posture, without stressing the joints or the heart.
whereas most forms of exercise build the body’s stronger muscles, pilates exercises work as much or more to strengthen the weaker ones too. the result is a properly balanced body, with better joint mobility, a firm musculature and good, natural posture.