Hot yoga is hot

I’ve been using an unlimited pass to hot yoga since the New Year began. I’ve been about 6 times now, to a studio that uses the Bikram method. This is 26 poses, and two breathing exercise conducted in 90 min. in a room at about 104 degrees F with a humidity of 40%. What’s great is that you really do sweat – and that feels good. For someone like me – who finds it difficult to break a sweat even in an hour of spinning class – it was wonderful to see sweat on my forearms. Proponents say the poses are designed to be restorative. The twisting and stretching good for digestion, and the heat really good for circulation and removal of toxins. It’s weird to have  your mat dripping wet (bring a towel) and hard to hold parts of your body that are drenched. Be prepared for half-naked peopel just a foot away…some good to look at, some not so much! But you’re not there to judge. The lights are bright and you are asked to connect with your own reflection in the mirror. So this isn’t for the faint hearted. What’s the coolest thing (well the hottest)? After just two classes my body did a pose that I thought was going to be impossible. I felt my heart opening up along with my ability to do backbends. The downside: At least in this studio if felt more like bootcamp than yoga. Very fast through the paces with a bit of aggression from the instructors. I have actually found another hot studio that doesn’t use the Bikram method but a softer gentler regime – still in the heat. The lights are lower, there are more pauses and more gentle instructions to connect with your breath. Ahhh, my kind of yoga. I’m hooked.

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