The name Bikram Yoga comes from its founder, Bikram Choudhary who took the nuances of traditional yoga and founded a brand new system of Yoga in the former half of the 1970’s. The most widely practiced form of hot yoga, Bikram Yoga classes last for 90 minutes and it consists of 2 breathing exercises and 26 poses. Bikram Yoga is ideally practiced in a room that is heated to 40.6 degree Celsius with a humidity level of 40%.
The claim of Bikram Yoga is that it provides a holistic healing process for the body. While practicing the asanas in heated room the body is able to stretch better and farther. It is also an ideal place to exercise as the chances of injury are lesser and there is immense stress reduction. It is also said to prevent heart diseases. As per Bikram Chaudhary’s theory, most of us only use 50% of the lungs in our day to day activities and therefore the lung must be stretched to its fullest in order to be able to hold more oxygen. Hence Bikram yoga facilitates the lungs to perform better.
Blood Circulation and Bikram Yoga
Blood circulation becomes effective during Bikram Yoga because of the two vital processes; compression and extension. These two processes and said to work together to infuse fresh blood to every organ and every joint in the body. When a certain asana is performed, we stretch or compress an organ or a part of our body thereby preventing the flow of blood in that particular area for a short while. This makes the heart pump more blood into the body due to the temporary blockage. Extension is the pumping of more blood into the body by the heart. Once the asana is complete and the body comes back to the normal position more blood is pumped into the arteries that were blocked.
There are specific reasons why Bikram Yoga is practiced inside a hot room. Our body becomes more flexible and hence we can go deeper into the yoga pose. As a result of excess of sweating profusely a lot of toxins are released out of our body. Bikram Yoga not only works in benefitting your muscles but also does wonders for your organs.
Benefits of Bikram Yoga:
Each asana or pose in Bikram Yoga is so designed that the muscles, tendons, ligaments in the body are stretched to the maximum. Since it is performed in a heated room, there is a lot of sweating that goes on and this result in the release of toxins. It also facilitates weight loss and helps build muscles.
Bikram yoga is also practiced by a lot of athletes to help them perform better. World renowned athletes like basketball star Kobe Bryant, ace tennis player John McEnroe and Andy Murray are some of the ardent practitioners of Bikram Yoga. Many actors like George Clooney, Charlie Sheen and Madonna are also vociferous practitioners of Bikram Yoga. It has helped them stay in shape, lose weight and maintain a fit body and above all has bolstered their performance.
Bikram Yoga is a more strenuous form of Yoga than any other and hence it is important to know some of the dos and dont’s before you start with it. Since it is practiced in a high temperature, it is possible that one may feel nauseous and dizzy. If such a thing happens, the best thing is to take rest for a while rather than straining the body too much.
The body should be well hydrated since there will be a lot of fluid loss as a result of sweating under such a high temperature. The fundamental objective of Yoga is to make your body relax and stay calm, hence there is no need to overstress the body or overdo the asanas.
While there are sceptics who feel that performing such strenuous exercise under such high temperature is detrimental to the body, the patron of Bikram Yoga states that the body works wonderfully well when subjected to such a high temperature and hence there should be no reason to worry.