Why Hot? 4 Reasons to Practice Yoga in the Heat
Hi! I’m Janet, and I love hot yoga. Emphasis on hot! I teach our signature Slow Hot Flow style at our Potts Point studio and wanted to break down a few amazing reasons and benefits of practicing yoga specifically in a heated room.
At One, our heat is special. We have a state of the art hydronic heating system, which means it’s a hydrating heat that doesn’t dry your skin or zap your cells the way that some of the infrared panels do. Some of our students have said it’s like a “velvet” heat or a nice warm blanket on a cold night. Our heating & fresh air systems maximise air and water in the space, as well as give air replacement hourly, leaving our studios smelling fresh and lungs clean.
To start off, hot yoga is actually quite traditional. Yoga has roots back to India where naturally the climate was hot, delivering a vigorous and sweaty practice. Commercially, it was established by Bikram Choudhury with the Bikram Method and then expanded beyond the set 26 postures that make up the Bikram sequence. Now many yoga styles are practiced in the heat and here’s why.
1. Hot yoga is soothing. As humans, we naturally gravitate towards the heat. This is why we go on tropical vacations! The heat elicits a neuro muscular relaxant which means it has a calming effect on the body and mind.
2. Hot yoga can increase your flexibility. The heat helps you to warm your muscles up more quickly and safely deepen in certain yoga postures. We aim to build dynamic flexibility in our classes, which means you are flexible yet strong. Specifically, we teach slowly with strong alignment cues so that you are practicing in the heat safely. It is possible to overstretch, leading to sore muscles so it’s important to listen to your teacher and how to engage your muscles in each posture.
3. Hot yoga is a complete workout for your body and your mind. As modern humans, we lead super busy lives and everything competes for our time. Hot yoga is the best two for one deal you can find. Slow Hot Flow is a vigorous class that will make you sweat from head to toe leaving your entire body worked. Slow does not mean easy. It’s actually quite hard and will put your gym session to shame most days. Heat can also be very confronting and in turn, humbling. You will build mental strength and stamina. All within an hour, the component of mindfulness and tradition of yoga is never lost. You never feel like you wasted your time “stretching.” which is a stigma we know yoga can have.
4. Hot yoga feels good! The nature of hot yoga is that you heavily sweat. This immediately leaves a feeling of transformation. The sweat itself detoxifies the body leaving you refreshed and glowing. Above anything else, this is why students are inspired to come back each day, it simply feels good!
If you are new to hot yoga, give yourself 5-10 classes to get use to the heat. Like anything, it’s a practice and does take time. We create an inclusive and non-judgemental environment so you can feel comfortable and welcome from your first class. Let’s get hot!