Get Started with Bikram Hot Yoga
Our Bikram Hot Yoga instructors guide you through the 26 postures, sequence selected and developed by Bikram Choudhury from Hatha Yoga. It has been proved and experienced by millions that these 26 postures systematically work every part of the body, to give all the internal organs, all the veins, all the ligaments, and all the muscles everything they need to maintain optimum health and maximum function. Each component takes care of something different in the body, and yet they all work together synergistically, contributing to the success of every other one, and extending its benefits.
Why 105 degrees?
Yoga changes the construction of the body from the inside out, from bones to skin and from fingertips to toes. So before you change it, you have to heat it up to soften it, because a warm body is a flexible body. Then you can reshape the body any way you want.
Bikram Yoga flushes away the waste products, the toxins of all the glands and organs of your body. It provides a natural irrigation of the body through the circulatory system, with the help of the respiratory system. It brings nourishments to every cell of your body so that each one can perform its function and keep your body healthy. Bikram Yoga also employs heat to further that cleaning process: When you sweat, impurities are flushed out of the body through the skin.
Practicing yoga not only increases our supplies of oxygen, but it also teaches us how to use that oxygen properly – we learn to control the breath through pranayama.
How quickly you progress will depend entirely on you — upon your natural ability to a small extent, but mostly upon the time and effort you give to Yoga. It will have little to do with how “perfectly” you can do the poses.
Few of us ever do the poses “perfectly”. Instead, it will have to do with how well you understand what you are trying to accomplish in each pose, how you try to accomplish your goal, and how supple your muscles and joints have become in comparison to the point at which you began. In Yoga there is no standard of comparison except yourself. To be ‘Perfect’ in Yoga is to do the best you can do.
Bikram teaches you not only the ideal pose – how you will eventually be able to do it – but also the reality – telling you what problems you will have as you try to do the pose, what clues will help you make rapid progress, and where you might be tempted to “cheat,” thus depriving yourself of the benefit of doing the pose properly. Bikram explains to you, in his inimitable humorous and informative way, how his scientifically designed series of twenty-six poses will enhance mind and body, relax, strengthen, reshape, and heal all of you in 90 minutes.
Preparation for Your First Class
Since the studio is heated to 105 º you need to have a large towel, a yoga mat, and a water bottle for class. We sell mats and water as well as rent mats and towels. Dress as light as possible. Men wear shorts or bathing suit. Women wear exercise top and shorts or a swimsuit. T-shirts are bulky; tank tops are better.
Come on an empty stomach. No food 1 to 3 hours before class. A small quantity of simple, easily digestible food is recommended for the meal prior to class.
Drink lots of water for several days before your first class if you’re not in the habit of drinking water. Doctors estimate you need at least 2 liters per day for normal body maintenance. Double that for doing Bikram yoga. If you drink large quantities of caffeinated drinks or eat mostly processed foods it can effect your body’s ability to tolerate the heat, so please cut down on these items in preparation for class.
Expect After Your First Class
You might feel very tired after class. This is absolutely normal and a good sign that your body is cleansing. Your energy levels should be restored to normal within several classes.
You might find yourself feeling extremely energetic and experience difficulty sleeping. Don’t worry–this is a good sign that the yoga is truly filling you up with energy. You don’t have insomnia. You just have more time to do the things you enjoy.
You might feel sore or stiff the day after your first class. Come back to class as soon as possible! Your body is waking up and coming alive and you want to keep the process going!
You might feel nauseous, dizzy or have a headache after class. This could be a sign that you are dehydrated. Please drink lots of water before returning to class. Or it could be a sign that you were trying so hard that you weren’t breathing normally. Please breathe normally during every posture.
You might experience some skin irritation. This too is normal, it means that the skin is releasing toxins. Showering directly after class will wash the toxins away. It will also help normalize the body temperature.
You might feel very hungry after class for a while, or you might lose your appetite completely. Both reactions are normal. If you are concerned about your weight, don’t worry too much either way. Once you get into a regular practice pattern, your appetite and your weight will normalize. You’ll find yourself feeling and looking leaner and younger.