Yoga has become more popular and is loved by many people. As an exercise, yoga focuses on strength, flexibility, and breathing. Physical and mental health is also the main goal of this activity. Besides affordable, yoga is quite simple and not complicated. Can everyone participate in this type of exercise? Yes. There are many types of yoga, and there is one for everyone, regardless of the level. Each type of yoga has its respective advantages. Before we dig deeper into the benefits of hot yoga, let’s take a look at what other types of yoga have to offer!
Popular types of Yoga
You’d probably know several types of yoga already. The list we have below does not cover all types of yoga, only the most popular ones. If you want to dig deeper, we suggest reading “What are the 30 different types of yoga?” next
1. Vinyasa Yoga
Vinyasa yoga is quite popular among yoga practitioners. It consists of 12 movements in a set of exercises. What distinguishes Vinyasa yoga from the others is how it focuses on breathing. Everything is based on saluting the morning sun, along with certain breathing techniques.
Besides a great starting point for beginners, Vinyasa yoga is known to strengthen several core organs of the body. It usually starts and ends with Savasana or a corpse pose. While your body relaxes, your blood circulation improves and you feel calmer.
2. Anurasa Yoga
It’s one type of yoga that uses tools in its practice. Usually, during a class, you’ll use rope and blocks or even a special pillow and blanket for yoga. These help in achieving more varied movements. The focus of Anurasa yoga is to hold poses at a certain time. Therefore, it’s important to make sure you are fit enough to make it through the whole session.
Beginners who are interested in Anurasa yoga should not worry. Some movements are quite easy to do. And there are steps for you to take to improve. A more challenging form of Anurasa yoga welcomes those who are physically stronger and more flexible. When you’re ready, try Iyengar Yoga.
3. Hatha Yoga
Some believe that Hatha Yoga is the mother of all yoga. Hatha Yoga combines asanas (poses), pranayama (breathing), and meditation, which are the bases of all yoga practices. Hatha yoga movements are carried out slowly to train your body’s strength and flexibility. At the same time, it also exercises focus and relaxation while creating full awareness of oneself.
This type of yoga is also suitable for beginners. Through Hatha yoga, you get to learn new movements at your own comforts. Hatha yoga movements vary greatly. In fact, some yoga movements and postures originate from Hatha Yoga practice.
4. Hot Yoga
Here it is the type of yoga that we focus on in this article! Hot Yoga is often mistaken as Bikram Yoga. Not many people know the differences. We dig deeper into this on “Hot yoga vs. Bikram yoga: what’s the difference?” We recommend reading that after this one.
Hot yoga is practiced in a room that is quite hot, hence the name. Besides, the movements are so intense that they make your body hotter and sweats faster. This yoga is different from yoga in general because it does not use meditation and chanting in the process.
More on Hot Yoga
Compared to other yoga, Hot Yoga focuses more on making your body sweats. In a room that reaches almost 42o Celsius, you’ll be performing several types of poses combined with breathing techniques. The temperature is usually maintained through a heater or simply by lighting candles all around the room. The duration is anywhere between 30 minutes to one hour, unlike Bikram Yoga that must be in precisely 90 minutes.
Keep in mind that the heat will make such a huge difference. If you’re not used to this condition, you may not be able to finish before the session ends. So, make sure you’re fueled before you start and refuel yourself after you finish. Eating before and after yoga is recommended within reason.
The benefits of Hot Yoga
For those who wonder, “What is hot yoga benefits?” we have the answer. Here are some of them:
1. Helps you lose weight and builds body posture
Calories burned through a physical activity during hot yoga are without a doubt more than any other yoga can do. In addition to heat your body produces, the heat from your surrounding also helps the process of burning calories. Some poses also equal to cardio training. The more heat and the faster your heart pumps, the more calories you burn.
Besides, hot yoga also improves your metabolism. The higher the body's metabolic activity, the more calories are burned. Yes, yoga does help you lose weight. So, if you’re looking for a tool to reach your desired body figure, yoga is your answer.
Body detoxification is arguably the most benefit you can have through hot yoga compared to other yoga. Technically, it’s like a good old fashion sauna. Activities in a hot room help release toxins and other chemicals. This benefit is instant. You’ll feel it from the very first class. Sweating during hot yoga is like no other yoga.
Keep in mind, you’ll be sweating profusely. Keeping yourself hydrated is the key to achieve all the other benefits of hot yoga. Balance your body detoxification with a lot of water consumption as well. Bring your water bottle and take time to hydrate before, during (if possible), and after hot yoga.
3. Improves flexibility
As your body temperature rises, stretching becomes easier. Not to mention the high room temperature also helps in achieving maximum flexibility. The hotter the body, the more flexible your muscles are.
Of course, flexibility is something you can achieve with all types of yoga. But the heat from outside greatly enhances this benefit. In a way, the heat makes your muscles more elastic. Flexibility is very useful not only in yoga but also in daily activities. Maintaining your flexibility will benefit you in the long run.
4. Enhances your sleep quality
Through intense body activity and burning calories, your body will instantly feel relaxed after hot yoga. And as your blood circulation is improved, a good night’s sleep is assured. As you rest deeper, your body will perform better the next day. You will feel refreshed with no more drowsiness!
If this is your cup of tea, you might also want to try yoga Nidra. This type of yoga helps you relax even deeper. Hot yoga during the day plus yoga Nidra at night, you will be sound asleep like never before! Read more about it here: “11 benefits of yoga Nidra”
5. Helps you recover from injuries
While most exercises are prone to injuries, hot yoga can actually help you recover from them. If you have any injury or muscle pain, hot yoga can help you reduce or even remove them once and for all, depending on what kind. As the heat helps your muscles relax and become more flexible, your body can heal faster. That being said, certain injuries need proper guidance and treatment.
Let us help you understand better from a health perspective. As your blood flows faster, nutrients are distributed optimally throughout the body. This also helps your body in repairing sick or damaged parts.
6. Beautifies your skin
Following the previous point, the improved blood flows and nutrients distribution will also benefit your skin. Besides, the heat during hot yoga will open up your pores. That combines with detoxification sweating makes your skin healthier.
We’ll never get tired of reminding you to stay hydrated. If you don’t balance the sweating with enough water intakes, instead of glowing skin, you’ll end up with dry and unhealthy skin.
7. Improves your breathing
Another thing you’ll notice from the very beginning is how your breathing improves. Learning some breathing techniques is indeed a part of Yoga. Hot yoga takes it to the next level. In a hot room, breathing is more difficult. Simply to not lose consciousness, your body is encouraged to take more oxygen. Your lungs are more open and after a while, their capacity will increase.
With the right technique, hot yoga makes you realize that breathing is not just taking in oxygen and releasing it. It also focuses on self-awareness. Practicing proper breathing techniques helps prevent asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, and other respiratory issues.
8. Helps you focus more
To practice focus and concentration in daily life does require effort. This can be achieved through yoga. As you must hold various poses correctly under the heat, you’re training your brain to focus and concentrate even more. The more you train your body, including your brain, the better it will work. You will see the difference in your daily activities soon after several sessions of hot yoga.
9. All the benefits at low impact
How amazing that all of the above benefits of hot yoga can be achieved through something so flowing and easy. Compared to most exercises that provide similar output, hot yoga is considered a low impact. Your body will not be forced to strenuous activities that can harm your joints and muscles. Even those with injuries or health issues can still practice hot yoga with the advice of their doctors.
10. Happier life!
There is no scientific research that proves hot yoga can bring you happiness. But through the exercises, your body will release endorphins. It’s the chemical your brain produces to make you feel happy and positive. One cannot argue that this is a good thing! The more you do hot yoga, the more endorphins flow in your body, and the happier you will feel. This positive feeling will change the way you see things in your life.
11. Healthy friendship
Hot yoga is usually practiced in an intimate studio. Depending on the size, there will be 5 to 20 other people in the same room with you. And since you’re all in this together, you have the chance to form a friendship with some, if not all! The best thing about finding new friends is when you have the same vision, and in this case, hot yoga brings you all closer together.
Are you ready for your first hot yoga session?
All of these benefits of hot yoga should be enough to convince you to sign up for your first hot yoga class. Before you go, here’s one important tip you should know. During hot yoga, you will sweat a lot. Without a proper yoga mat, you will not be able to get the maximum benefits.
We recommend choosing cork yoga mats. They are designed to provide optimum grip. And the best part is: the more you sweat, the more grips you’ll have! This is among the many reasons why you should practice on a cork yoga mat. Take a look at our eco-friendly collection if you’re thinking to buy one.