Once a week lately i have been trying a yoga called Bikram Yoga. Bikram yoga was created in 1971 by an Indian teacher named Bikram Choudhury and soon became one of the most popular yoga practiced today. Bikram uses poses from Hatha yoga but is practiced in a room heated to above 40 degree heat. The session begins with breathing exercises followed by 26 strengthening and postural poses. By the end of the 90 minute session you would have worked every bone in your body from neck down to your toes and probably released half your weight in sweat!
Why the Heat?
The 26 postures are performed in a heated room (40°C) so that deep penetration can relieve your body’s resistance without causing injury.
- Muscles, fascia and connective tissue become more elastic, allowing for greater flexibility with less chance of injury
- Promotes sweating which assists the detoxification process using the body’s largest eliminating organ – the skin
- Blood becomes thinner, which clears the circulatory system
- Heart rate becomes elevated which improves the cardiovascular system (heart and lungs)
- Warm muscles burn fat more effectively. When we stretch, the fat has no room to sit so it redistributes to the blood stream, which we then use as energy
- Capillaries respond to heat by dilating. This allows more oxygen to muscles, tissues, glands and organs helping in the removal of waste products
- Higher temperatures improve the function of the nervous system, meaning that messages are carried more rapidly to and from the brain or spinal cord (allowing you to think clearer)
- Improves strength because proteins can be utilised more effectively
- Speeds up the breakdown of glucose and fatty acids
- Provides strengthening of willpower, self-control and determination through the challenging environment
The class is recommended for beginners through to professionals. I highly recommend everyone to try the yoga as it benefits not only your external appearance but also your internal organs!