Hot yoga has become a popular exercise in recent years. It offers many of the benefits of traditional yoga such as stress reduction, strength improvement and flexibility.
But as the heat has turned, hot yoga has the ability to give your heart, lungs, muscles and an even bigger, more intense workout.

What is hot yoga?

You may hear the terms "hot yoga" and "Bikram yoga" used interchangeably, but they are not exactly the same thing.
Bikram yoga, developed by a yogi called Bikram Choudhury, is done in a room heated to 105 ° C (41 ° C) with 40% humidity. It consists of 26 poses and two breathing exercises that are done in the same order in each class. Bikram yoga sessions last 90 minutes.
Hot yoga, on the other hand, really just means that the room is heated above normal room temperature. The heat can be set for whatever yoga instructor wants, which is usually between 80 and 100 ° F (27 and 38 ° C).
Hot yoga sessions can include any variety of poses, and the timing of each class will vary from studio to studio. And unlike Bikram yoga, which is quieter, serious practice, hot yoga often includes music and much more interaction between people in the class.
Bikram yoga has lost followers in recent years due to the onslaught of complaints against its founder. Some studios may use the term "hot yoga" instead of "Bikram yoga" to describe their heated classes. So, it is a good idea to read class descriptions carefully before signing up.

 

What are the benefits of hot yoga?

Regardless of the ambient temperature, Bikram yoga and warm yoga aim to provide relaxation of the mind and improve physical fitness.
A warm environment can make yoga practice more challenging, but some of the benefits may be worth it, especially if you are looking to make progress in one of the areas described below.
If done correctly and safely, hot yoga can provide the following benefits:

Improve flexibility

You may already know that stretching after warming up the muscles is safer than stretching cold muscles.
Thus it follows that an environment like a hot yoga studio can make yoga poses easier and more effective. The heat allows you to stretch a little more and achieve a greater range of motion.

 

Burn more calories

160-pound person can burn about 183 calories per hour with traditional yoga. Turning heat can help you burn even more calories.
According to researchers at Colorado State University, calorie burning can be as high as 460 for men and 330 for women over a 90-minute Bikram yoga session.
Hot yoga, even if it is not as intense as Bikram session, will burn more calories than a traditional yoga workout.

Creates bone density

Supporting your weight during a yoga pose can help improve bone density. This is especially important for the elderly and in premenopausal women, as bone density decreases with age.
A 2014 study of women who participated in hot yoga over a 5-year period found that premenopausal women had increased bone density in their neck, hips and lower back.
This led the study authors to believe that hot yoga may be an effective option for reducing the risk of osteoporosis in women.

 

Reduces stress

Many people turn to yoga as a natural way to deal with stress.
A 2018 stress study, physically inactive adults found that a 16-week hot yoga program significantly reduced participants with stress levels.
At the same time, it improves your health and quality of life, as well as your self-efficacy - the belief that you have control over your behavior and social environment.

Relieves depression

Yoga is known as a technique to help you relax and improve your mood. According to the American Psychology Association, it may also be helpful therapy to reduce the symptoms of depression.
In addition, a 2017 review of 23 different studies, which focused on yoga as a treatment for depression, concluded that yoga is an effective way to reduce depressive symptoms.

Provides an increase circulatory system

Stunning different high-temperature yoga poses can give your heart, lungs and muscles more of a workout challenge than doing the same poses at a lower temperature.
According to a 2014 study, just one warm yoga session is enough for your heart to pump the same pace as a brisk walk (3.5 miles per hour). Hot yoga also spins up your breathing and metabolism.

Reduces Blood Glucose Levels

During any type of exercise can help burn energy and reduce circulating glucose (sugar) levels in the bloodstream, hot yoga can be especially helpful for people at higher risk for type 2 diabetes.
A 2013 study found that a short-term, hot yoga program improved glucose tolerance in older adults with obesity, but had less of an effect on young, lean adults.

Nourishes the skin

Sweating, and a lot if, is one of the main goals of hot yoga.
One of the benefits of sweating in a warm environment is that it can improve circulation by bringing oxygen and nutrients from the blood to the skin cells. This in turn can help nourish the skin from the inside out.

Safety Tips

If you are in good health, hot yoga is generally safe. But, as with most types of exercise, there are some safety precautions to keep in mind.
Dehydration is a major concern with hot yoga. Drinking water before, during and after a hot yoga class is essential. A low-calorie sports drinks can also help replenish lost electrolytes during your hot yoga workout.
Some pre-existing health conditions may make you more likely to move into a warm room. This includes heart disease, diabetes, arterial, abnormalities, anorexia nervosa, and a history of fainting.
If you have low or low blood sugar, you may be subject to dizziness or faintness with hot yoga. Check with your doctor to make sure hot yoga is safe for you.
Pregnant women should consult their doctor before trying hot yoga.
If you have had heat intolerance problems in the past, you may want to stick with yoga, which is done at a normal temperature.
Stop immediately if you feel dizzy, dizzy or nauseous. Leave the room and rest in a cooler environment.

The bottom line

Hot yoga may not be for everyone. But if you like regular yoga, and want to climb a step, it may be just what you are looking for.
Hot yoga offers a wide range of benefits for body and mind. It can help you burn calories, improve bone density, increase your cardiovascular fitness and improve your flexibility. It can also help relieve depression and reduce stress.