You might have come across this piece as a beginner within the yoga world, or you might be very experienced at practicing yoga. Either way, you might be wondering: what exactly is Bikram yoga?
This is what we are here for. We are going to outline what exactly Bikram yoga is along with the benefits that doing this type of yoga has.
Bikram Yoga And How To Do It
To summarize what exactly Bikram yoga is, this is a 90 minute yoga session with approximately 26 yoga positions to be practiced. Sounds pretty usual for yoga, right?! Well, the difference with Bikram yoga is all to do with the environment that it is practiced in.
Bikram yoga will tend to be conducted in a heated studio room, and the temperature of the studio room will be between 90 degrees and 120 degrees. This causes a lot of people a great deal of confusion, especially due to the origins.
Originally, Bikram yoga came from India. Despite India being known as a very tropical country where heat is very common, they would actually practice Bikram yoga early in the morning or around the time of sunset when the heat would not be at its absolute peak.
This will lead you to question the real purpose behind doing Bikram yoga in a heated room. Next, we will move on to why the heated component element of Bikram yoga is so vitally important, and the benefits of this are very impressive.
Why Do People Prefer Bikram Yoga Yo ‘Normal’ Yoga?
The principal reason as to why people prefer Bikram yoga instead of conventional yoga is all to do with the detoxification process. Let’s explore this further. In Bikram yoga, with the room being heated, you will work up much more of a sweat – for yoga practice anyway. This is the main purpose of Bikram yoga.
Heavy sweat is a key part of Bikram yoga because it will help you to flush all the toxins in your body through your skin. Additionally, working up a sweat can be really healthy especially for people who struggle to find time to fit in high intensity workout training.
In ‘normal’ yoga, not everyone will experience sweat let alone heavy sweat because this would make yoga very uncomfortable. But, when it comes to Bikram yoga this mentality could not be more different. If you want a successful Bikram session then you need to get a sweat on.
Is Bikram Yoga Safer Yoga?
We pose this question in reference to the warming up process. It is true that even in conventional yoga, a professional yoga instructor is compulsory and this shows the riskiness of attempting yoga in an inexperienced solo setting.
But, people do not always think that you have to warm up for yoga because it is so calm and relaxing. This is not true. Although the majority of yoga poses do not reflect any danger for the muscle, you could still overwork or overstretch a muscle if you do not warm up adequately beforehand.
The whole point of warming up your muscles is so that you can fully relax them before you do any kind of yoga just to minimize injury. In Bikram yoga, the heated room condition becomes the optimum place to warm up before taking on any kind of yoga moves.
This is because the temperature will assist in warming up muscle just so that it will be much safer for you to do the yoga poses.
Bikram Yoga Can Help You Improve Your Strength As Well As Your Flexibility
An extremely unique aspect about yoga is that you will ultimately be able to find the impossible. What we mean by this is that you will not know what your body is capable of until you test yourself in yoga – be this regular or Bikram.
However, Bikram yoga takes this up another level because you can really test your limit and you will be surprised with the outcome. You will be surprised at what your body is capable of. The key thing to remember with yoga is that practice makes perfect, and you need to give yourself time to reach your full potential.
With Bikram yoga, it is easier to push your body because in a warmer environment your muscles will naturally be more relaxed. This will mean that it will get to a point in Bikram yoga where you find the impossible possible, and this might be at a quicker rate than ‘normal’ yoga.
You need to have some self restraint and ensure that you do not overstretch your muscles or force yourself to advance too quickly. When it comes to flexibility, Bikram yoga will provide you with much more flexibility. As we mentioned before, the heated room will come with its advantages.
One of these advantages is that extra level of flexibility due to relaxed muscles. This will make it much easier for you to do different yoga poses. However, as we said before you need to be controlled in how much you push your body because you want to avoid overworking your muscles at all costs.
If you reach a point where you start to feel uncomfortable then you should take a moment to relax and be a lot more gradual when you are trying new yoga poses in a Bikram yoga class.
Despite Bikram yoga inviting a whole host of comments from critics and other professionals, saying that it is not as effective as it is made out to be, the popularity of Bikram yoga has proved otherwise. The reason why Bikram yoga is still debated now is because it has the same kind of benefits that ‘normal’ yoga has.
It is clear to see that people who have tried Bikram yoga have continued with the class because for some people, heavy sweat during a yoga session is actually what they have been seeking and what they have been missing within their yoga routine. When all is said and done, it just comes down to personal choice.
It is up to you whether you prefer ‘normal’ yoga, or whether you want to work up a sweat in Bikram yoga.