For many of you, bikram yoga must be a new term but trust me it has been in use since the 1970s (quite a long time, right?). It is a modified version of hot yoga that is practiced to gain the maximum benefit of this sweaty form of yoga.
Devised by Bikram Choudhury, a yoga teacher who was born in India but settled down in America and propagated the concept of bikram yoga. It is a varied form of hot yoga that is practiced in a room with a temperature of 41 degrees celsius. The humidity of the room is set at 40% to make it more like the climatic conditions of India.
The yoga practice includes 26 postures that are to be performed in a fixed sequence. These bikram yoga postures are pre-set and cannot be changed and this is what makes it different from hot yoga.
Bikram yoga is a modified form of hot yoga where a particular sequence of postures is practiced within a time limit and the room temperature is fixed at 40 degrees to shape up the body, stretch the muscles, get rid of the stress and anxiety that you face in life.
Though it has been scientifically proven that hot yoga is not very beneficial as compared to normal yoga, still bikram hot yoga is said to reduce body cholesterol and moderate the blood sugar levels as well.
How to perform bikram yoga?
The bikram yoga sessions are conducted in a heated room so that you sweat profusely and get rid of your body toxins. The sessions last for 90 minutes and 26 postures are practiced within this duration. These postures include:
Pranayama - A breathing exercise that is done in a standing position.
Ardha Chandrasana with Pada Hastasana - Half Moon Pose clubbed with Hands to Feet Pose
Utkatasana - An awkward yoga pose that must be practiced in the presence of a trainer
Garudasana - The Eagle Pose
Dandayamana Janushirasana - Standing head to knee pose
Dandayamana Dhanurasana - Standing bow pose - a varied form of Natarajasana
Tuladandasana - Balancing Stick pose - Similar to Virabhadrasana III
Dandayamana Vibhaktapada Paschimottanasana - Standing Separate Leg Stretching Pose
Trikonasana - Triangle Pose
Dandayamana Vibhaktapada Paschimottanasana - Standing Separate Head to Knee Pose
Tadasana - Tree pose - a modified form of Vrikshasana
Padangusthasana - Toe Stand Pose
Shavasana - Corpse Pose
Pavanamuktasana - Wind Relieving Pose
Padahastasana - Bending forward in a sitting position
Bhujangasana - Cobra Pose
Salabhasana - Locust Pose
Purnasalabhasana - Full Locust Pose
Dhanurasana - Bow Pose
Suptavajrasana - Reclining Thunderbolt Pose
Ardhkurmasana - Half Tortoise Pose
Ushtrasana - Camel Pose
Shasangasana - Rabbit Pose
Janushirasana with Paschimottanasana - Head to knee Pose along with the Back Stretching Pose
Ardhamatsyendrasana - Half Lord of the Fishes Pose
Kapalbhati - A purifying technique to release the body toxins through forceful breathing
Before starting a bikram yoga session, you must drink lots of water to keep yourself hydrated. Also, you must take your meal at least two hours before the commencement of the session so that you focus on the postures without troubling your body.
Benefits of bikram yoga
Bikram Yoga has proved to be highly beneficial and this is why it has been taken up by so many people all around the world. Here are some of the benefits that you can avail by taking up a bikram yoga session:
Bikram yoga practice can reduce your stress levels and help you come out of depression and mood swings.
It can help you get rid of chronic pains in your muscles, back problems and joint aches by using heating therapy along with muscle stretching exercises.
Practicing bikram yoga on a regular basis can help you gain control of your blood sugar levels and is very beneficial for people suffering from diabetes.
It can also reduce the cholesterol of your body and increase your bone density as well.
It improves the flexibility of your body and calms your mind as well.
Therefore, it can be concluded that bikram yoga is a highly effective form of yoga that works on your body and also enhances your thought process and reduces your stress. It leads to the detoxification of your mind and body and makes you a happy and healthy person.