Bikram Yoga : Pros and Cons

Submitted by debabrat on September 12, 2012

Bikram yoga is yoga which is taught by authorized teachers from the Bikram Yoga Institute. Bikram yoga was started and patented by Bikram Choudhury. This yoga has basis in Hatha yoga. Bikram yoga has gotten really popular because of its intense workout-like regimen.

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This yoga session happens in heated studios (about 100-110 degrees Fahrenheit) and about 40 to 60 percent humidity. It consists of 26 poses which are done twice, in a 90 minute session. As this yoga is very strenuous and difficult, it tends to create groups into people who love Bikram yoga and those who love it or those who hate it.


Here is a list of pros and cons of Bikram yoga.

Pros

  • Heat of the studio works well for the body – stretching the muscles allows the body to perform better under heat. More muscles are worked out.
  • Helps in rehabilitating people who may have become incapacitated due to chronic pain- related conditions
  • The order of the poses help stretch the body in the order of the muscles. They follow a chronology.
  • For Bikram yoga, in particular, the teachers are quite rigorously trained by the Institute world over. You usually will get the same level of quality with teachers across the world.
  • It is a great form of yoga for weight loss as well. There are many proponents of this method for weight loss. You will find many testimonials for weight loss.

Cons

While the pros make quite the case for Bikram Yoga, there are some definite cons too.

  • The heat in the studio can be a deterrent – it has been known to lead to nausea, dizziness, vomiting and even rapid heart rate. If you have any chronic condition, you should seek a doctor’s advice before doing Bikram yoga.
  • Oxygen deprivation is a very real result of a hot yoga studio. Depletion in oxygen can lead to muscle damage.
  • There are no inversions to Bikram Yoga poses. Inversions are an important part of yoga poses, especially hatha yoga which is the basis for Bikram Yoga.
  • Overstretching of muscles is a common occurrence. The heat of the room can be misleading and you can identify the injury only once your body has cooled down,
  • Some people even vocally oppose Bikram Yoga because they think it is more a marketing tool than staying true to actual yoga.
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