Bikram Yoga or what others referred to as Hot Yoga was created by the Indian Yoga master Bikram Choudhury. It is considered to be a type of Hatha Yoga except that those that practice it do so in a room heated to 105 degrees Fahrenheit with about 40% humidity in the air. This sauna like room focuses on two main purposes: to heat up your muscles and help your flexibility, and two to help your body sweat and release toxins. At a yoga retreat you will be shown how this style of yoga adds to the benefit of a classical approach to yoga classes.
A Bikram Yoga class session can be very difficult for beginner students because it will last for 90 minutes and consists of a series of 26 poses and two breathing exercises. The yoga teacher will move through the session with the yoga asanas and breathing exercises so that they work together and help improve your lung capacity. Bikram views this as a very critical piece of Hot Yoga because most of us only use about 50 percent of our lungs which brings less oxygen flow through the rest of our body and lessens circulation.
Poses and blood flow
While practicing Bikram Yoga at your yoga retreat, the yoga teaching will emphasize your well-being on every level through practice and release of toxins and helping to improve your body circulation and respiration. Through the practice of the 26 poses of Hot Yoga you will practice the combination of extensions and compressions. During the pose you will move into a compression pose which will temporarily slow blood-flow to an area of your body. As you release the pose the extension gives the oxygen-rich blood ability to flood that area of your body. This type of blood related movement is said to eliminate toxins in your body and remove bacteria or infections. This type of exercise is also known to help treat other problems as well. The extension and compression is also known to massage lymph nodes and put a pressure on the endocrine glands in the body which helps correct the function. Changing the volume in your blood flow will also benefit the circulation and blood supply going to your brain. Each pose that is completed addresses a specific area of your body.
While at the yoga retreat and working with your teacher that has gone through extensive yoga certification you will be moving through postures in a safe environment and heated room so that your muscles will be warm and can feel deep penetration without injury as a result. Postures are done in a sequence order to preparing your body for the next posture providing healing results.
Every muscle, joint, tendon, ligament organ and gland will be moving fresh oxygen rich blood through your entire body by the time you finish one class session of Bikram Yoga. This style of yoga and the postures that you work through are created to get your body back on the right track. Bikram Yoga provides balance, strength and flexibility by massaging your spine, tendons, muscles, joints to every part of your body. While away at your yoga vacation you will even have expanded your lung capacity and can really breathe in the fresh air. Your bones are stronger, your joints are more flexible, your muscles are stronger, and more toned. Regular practice of these postures will bring you’re a greater health and peace of mind.
Tips and Cautions
While away at one of the world’s many great yoga retreats, you will have the option of bringing with you to each session, your own yoga mat and towel. This is a good idea because when you are practicing Bikram Yoga or Hot Yoga you will tend to sweat a lot. Due to the heat you will also not have a lot of clothing on. Having your own mat with you protects you and gives you peace of mind with your own sanitized mat and gives you the comfort of knowing that the only focus you need to have is on the yoga session. Always make sure to drink plenty of water because you will be sweating a lot of fluids out of your body. You want to avoid getting dehydrated and avoid eating a meal two hours prior to class. Always find a certified yoga studio to practice your Hot Yoga.