Bikram Choudry’s beginner yoga class for cosmic energy is offered in studios around the world. Each class is made up of 26 yoga poses and two breathing exercises. The yoga workout is completed in a room heated to 105 degrees Fahrenheit, which is why this form is also called “hot yoga.” A Bikram yoga class is unlike any other type of yoga!
Many beginners are excited to try the series because of the benefits it has for flexibility, strength, balance and focus, but they have questions about how to do Bikram yoga and want some hot yoga tips to ensure a great first class. With just a few Bikram yoga tips to follow before, during and after class, every Bikram yoga class can be a great one!
How to Prepare for Bikram Yoga Class
One of the most common problems for new students is being dehydrated. In the hot yoga room, students sweat for 90 minutes straight, so if they’re even slightly dehydrated, they’ll tire quickly and possibly even feel dizzy. If possible, a new student should start hydrating a few days before their first class. Drink two to three liters of water the day before class, and consistently drink throughout the day of class, stopping about half an hour before class starts.
Here are a few more tips:
Find out whether the studio provides yoga mats and towels to new students. If not, bring a yoga mat and two towels; one to put on the mat during class, and one for showering after class.
Bring a bottle of water.
What to wear? The rule of thumb is that the clothing should be comfortable to move in, but consider the temperature of the room, too. Women are usually comfortable in shorts and a sports bra, and men wear fitted shorts.
Arrive at the hot yoga studio early to sign in and receive a short orientation.
How to Do Bikram Yoga Successfully
Any student’s first hot yoga class can be a bit overwhelming: the teacher moves quickly through the two breathing exercises and 26 postures. However, because the routine is the same every class, before long, the poses are familiar. Here are some tips to make it through class.
Listen very carefully to the teacher’s words. The instructor doesn’t demonstrate the poses, but provides very precise instructions for how to get into each one. Watch the students in the front row to see what each pose should look like.
Students should try not to drink water very often during class. If they’re already hydrated well, they won’t need the water, anyway. If they must drink, they should take small sips only. Water moving around in the stomach can feel funny in some of the postures.
If a new student feels dizzy, they should first try standing still in the center of their mat. If they still feel dizzy, kneel down next. Only after kneeling should they try sitting and then lying down. Standing up, lying down, and then standing up again can easily lead to dizziness.
The best advice for a new student is to pace their practice, relax, and enjoy the class!
Bikram Yoga Tips for After Class
Once class is over, there are only three things to remember:
Start hydrating again right away!
Make sure to replenish any electrolytes and minerals lost from all the sweating. A banana is a good thing to eat after class.
Go back for a second class quickly! Sore muscles will be easily healed in the hot room next time.
Bikram’s hot yoga class is a great way to get in shape, focus the mind, and find balance. With these tips, class will be easy to get through.
How Bikram Yoga Benefits Mothers Post Pregnancy
For a new mother, it’s important to balance time spent at home and personal time. It’s neither reasonable nor healthy to expect mothers to be with their children 100 percent of the time, so a new mother will need opportunities to have some time to herself. A new mother will also likely be concerned about losing her pregnancy weight.
All these concerns can be addressed in one relaxing exercise routine: Bikram Yoga.
Bikram Yoga benefits new mothers in a multitude of ways. It is a gentle way to exercise while being a very effective way to lose weight. It warms and flexes the muscles, allowing for effective stretching which is relaxing to body and mind. It also focuses on stress-reducing meditation, which is something that will prove very useful to a new mother.
Bikram During Pregnancy Is Not Advisable
It is important to note that Bikram yoga is not suitable for women during pregnancy, unless they were regular Bikram yoga students prior to pregnancy. The extreme heat and strenuous moves can be dangerous if the woman is not experienced in Bikram yoga. Most fitness professionals, myself included, believe that Bikram yoga has the potential to raise core temperature and therefore advise against this form of yoga for pregnancy.
Also, it is incredibly important for new mommies to stay well hydrated if they are taking part in Bikram yoga. Without proper hydration, Bikram (or hot yoga) can cause dehydration which may affect lactation and lead to breastfeeding issues.
What is Bikram Yoga?
Bikram Yoga is a specific type of yoga which is performed in a room heated to 105 degrees Fahrenheit. It retains the calm and gentle motions and strong stretches and poses of traditional yoga, but is considered by many to be more effective in several ways due to the heat.
Beginning students of Bikram Yoga should be prepared by being well hydrated and knowing the limitations of their body. The heat of Bikram Yoga often causes nausea and light headedness. Beginners, especially new mothers, should be careful not to overwork themselves. New mothers who are not accustomed to working out may first want to try traditional yoga or the less extreme hot yoga before moving up to Bikram Yoga.
Bikram Yoga for Weight Loss
Traditional yoga is well known as a weight loss routine, but Bikram yoga benefits the participant a step further by heating the practice area. Students of Bikram Yoga will sweat more, causing their bodies to burn more calories. Additionally, the heated room warms the muscles and allows for further stretching, so poses may be performed more effectively to attain their full intended benefit.
For a new mother, Bikram Yoga is an ideal weight loss tool because it is a comparatively gentle workout. It is strenuous enough to burn calories efficiently, but the movements aren’t harsh and don’t involve aerobic activity. A new mother who is still recovering from birthing can ease into Bikram yoga without feeling overwhelmed.
Bikram Yoga for Stress Reduction
As traditional yoga focuses on meditation and calming the mind and body, so too does Bikram Yoga. All forms of Yoga encourage mental discipline, which in turn helps to control the emotions and reduces stress.
Bikram Yoga also works with the body to reduce physical stress. A good stretch is always relaxing, and the heat of Bikram Yoga allows muscles to stretch further than they normally would without injury. This thorough stretching invigorates circulation and improves oxygenation throughout the blood. Many people believe that this improved circulation, combined with the heavy sweating of Bikram Yoga, helps to flush impurities from the blood, creating a healthier mind and body.
Bikram Yoga benefits new mothers in many ways: It aids in post-pregnancy weight loss; allows mothers to have relaxing personal time; and reduces stress by calming the mind and purifying the body through gentle meditation. For a new mother who wants to start an exercise routine after childbirth, Bikram Yoga makes an ideal choice. Just remember to drink lots of water and practice in moderation.
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