Dangers Of Bikram Yoga

Submitted by babuli on September 12, 2012

Bikram yoga is a type of hot yoga which has been patented by Bikram Choudhury. In this form of yoga, you practice 26 poses, in a 90-minute session, in a room specially heated to about 100-110 degrees Fahrenheit, with at least 40-60 percent humidity.

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This form of yoga has people divided into two distinct camps – people who love it and people who hate it. Recently it’s been getting a considerable amount of negative publicity. Let’s look at some of the issues concerning Bikram Yoga.


Risks:

One of the primary risks associated with Bikram Yoga is that of dehydration and exhaustion from the heat. If you start a class without proper hydration or are a beginner, you do run this risk. But as a beginner, most classes will give you tips on how to handle the heat.

It is important to drink lots of water before you start your session and keep either plain water or water with electrolytes in a bottle with you. During a session of Bikram Yoga there will be water breaks so make sure you sip some water at these times.

For beginners who have cardiovascular issues, jumping straight into Bikram Yoga can cause pain. If it does cause pain, it makes sense for you to stop doing the poses immediately. For such people, it can even cause dizziness, nausea and fainting spells.

It is important to have your own equipment such as bottle, mat, towel and clothes. You tend to sweat a lot in this class, so hygiene is important. Bikram Yoga studios also have some quirky rules based on colors, which you might need to keep in mind.

Staying safe:

  • Drink water and stay hydrated. Keep water close at hand. Drink water before starting your class.
  • Bring any anomaly to your instructor’s notice – pain or any other symptom.
  • Wear as little clothing as possible.
  • Children, elderly and pregnant women should not do this unsupervised. Get your health practitioner’s or doctor’s approval before you do so. Remember to tell your instructor that you have a certain ailment and may not be able to complete the class.
  • If you feel any symptoms like nausea or dizziness, immediately stop, move to a cooler place in the room and apply cold water.
  • As a beginner you can consider taking half the class or doing all the 26 poses once. (In a regular Bikram Yoga class, you do all 26 poses twice.)
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