Q & A
Why the heat?
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.
Hatha 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.
What is the recommended room temperature for Bikram Yoga?
The recommended temperature is minimum 105F degrees and about 40% humidity.
The room is kept at this temperature or more for the following:
- Keeping the body from overheating (contrary to popular misconception)
- Protecting the muscles to allow for deeper stretching
- Detoxing the body (open pores to let toxins out)
- Thinning the blood to clear the circulatory system
- Increasing heart rate for better cardiovascular workout
- Improving strength by putting muscle tissue in optimal state for reorganization
- Reorganize the lipids (fat) in the muscular structure
How does Bikram Yoga work?
By the tourniquet effect: stretching, balancing (using gravity), and creating pressure all at the same time. The blood supply in arteries and veins is being cut off, creating pressure.
When released, a lock gate effect is created, causing blood to rush through veins and arteries, flushing them out. Also, pressure is applied to the heart by its relative position to the rest of the body.
What is happening in my body during Bikram Yoga?
Muscles are contracted and stretched at a cellular, biochemical level. Lipids and proteins reorganize optimally in such stretching, allowing for better circulation. Joint mobility and range of motion is increased, and strength is built by the use of gravity. Muscles and joints are balanced.
Blood and calcium are brought to the bones. Working against gravity strengthens the bones. The organs of the immune system within the bones (red marrow) are boosted.
The lymph nodes are massaged, lymph is pumped throughout the body, and white blood cells are distributed throughout the body as the lymphatic system works more efficiently.
There is compression and extension to the thymus, spleen, appendix and intestines; lungs are stretched and flushed out by increased blood circulation. The endocrine glands are encouraged to secrete appropriate hormones, and the communication between hormones and various glands and systems of the body is perfected. Toxins and waste are eliminated through the organs of elimination.
The nerves are stimulated by compression and extension, improving communication within the systems of the body and supplying fresh blood, oxygen and nutrients throughout. The brain is stimulated by improved circulation and by varying blood pressure.
I feel nauseous, dizzy during class and very tired after my first class. Is this normal?
It is not unusual to feel nauseous or dizzy during your first class. Practicing yoga in a heated room reveals to us our present condition, and inspires us take much better care of ourselves.
Usually the problem is that we do not drink enough water for daily living, let alone for exercising in a heated room. Nutritionists tell us that we need 64-80 ounces of water a day to help the body function properly.
In the heated yoga room, your body needs adequate fund of water to allow perspiration to release heat from the body as you practice. So we estimate you need another 64-80 ounces (sometime during the day) to allow for your 90 minutes in the room. Once you are drinking enough water your body will tolerate the heat better and you will actually enjoy the heat.
If you feel disoriented or like you need a good nap after your first few classes, this is likely because your body has begun to cleanse itself as a result of the yoga practice. Don’t be scared. After the first few classes this sensation will pass. The more you can relax as you give your 110% honest effort during class, the more energized you will feel throughout the class and throughout the rest of your day.
How should I prepare for class?
What to wear:
Plan on sweating… A LOT during your Bikram yoga session! Comfortable, yet snug clothing is recommended. It will allow you to move freely. Try to avoid loose or cotton attire; it can become very heavy and distracting for you during class.
What to bring:
- Bottle of water
- Yoga mat
- Large towel (to put on top of your mat)
- Additional towel (if you plan on showering after class)
- *Towels & mats are available for rent ($2 each)
- *Water and other beverages are available for purchase as well
What to eat/drink:
It is recommended to take class on an empty stomach. Food should be consumed about 2 hours before class (preferably light foods such as fruits, whole wheat, etc.) Any heavier foods should be consumed 2+ hours before class. Hydrating is extremely important as well. Come to class fully hydrated. Stay hydrated throughout the day- avoid taking all of your water right before/during class. If you plan on coming to an early class, hydrate well the evening before.
NEW STUDENTS- Please arrive twenty minutes early to register.