By: JESSICA WESSON
Edited by: CHRISTINA COLAVECCHIA
I have always had a love-hate relationship with yoga. I love the way I feel after class, but I have a very hard time motivating myself to go. That being said, I decided to enroll in a yoga class at my university so I would be forced to practice twice a week. I found the class to be helpful for my body, but also for my mind with the immense stress that I sometimes feel at school. While in the class, I met a lot of yoga lovers who often raved about hot yoga. I had no idea what hot yoga entailed, but I decided to find out on my summer vacation.
About two weeks ago I attended my first hot yoga class (also known as bikram yoga) and let me tell you, it was VERY hot. From the moment I walked into the room I knew I made the wrong clothing choice in long workout pants and a t-shirt, seeing that there was a man dressed in a Speedo beside me. At first I thought this was rather ridiculous, but as the class went on, I was wishing I had worn a bikini. The room was well above 100 degrees so it was impossible to not be drenched. While I was very hot in my pants, I found it was easier to hold onto poses that involved the legs because my hands wouldn’t slip off of them.
This class is definitely not for people that like to wear cute yoga outfits and hardly break a sweat. It is normal to question ones sanity when they tell you that they voluntarily practice yoga in intense heat and many wonder what the benefit of it is. According to LIVESTRONG.com, “heated environments increase your pulse rate and metabolism and allow your blood vessels to become more flexible. That makes circulation easier and increases blood flow to the limbs,” says writer Steph Barnard. I can definitely attest to this as I found myself to be more flexible than ever during class.
I really want to stress that this type of yoga is not for everybody. I drink a lot of water throughout the day and there was still a time in the class that I felt very dizzy, which was quite scary. I quietly left the room and splashed some water on my face to cool down. I also noticed people lying down on their mats when they felt fatigued. This class is solely for you so you should not feel embarrassed if you need to take a break. It is fun to try new classes and I would definitely recommend this to people that want to revamp their yoga practicing!