Thinking of trying out a hot yoga class? We asked Allie Hill, a celebrity yoga instructor and founder of Yoga Haven, to explain what to expect before you try and handle the heat.
Here are Allie's top five things to know before you book in for a class:
1. Hot yoga is not always Bikram (which is a school of yoga in itself) and in our case aims to brings the elements of traditional yoga styles into the heated environment. This creates a challenge for both the new and the veteran yogi.
2. Depending on the brand of studio you go to, the room is heated between 30 and 40 degrees. The heat itself has the incredible power of focusing the mind, and bringing it to stillness, but also keeps your heart beating a little faster, therefore giving a more cardiovascular edge to your yoga class. We also find that the body can move deeper into the postures in the heat, which is often why people the hot room as they have access to poses they can find difficult out of the warmth.
3. Hot yoga will definitely make you sweat. This helps you flush out toxins and bring fresh oxygenated blood into the body cleansing and rejuvenating the entire system. We can also guarantee a good night's sleep after a hot class!
4. There are different styles of hot yoga. At Yoga Haven, our style of hot yoga is 'Leela Yoga'. Leela means "play" in Sanskrit, and reflects our belief that yoga should be a liberating and joyfully experience.
5. Yoga has an incredibly positive impact on both mind and body, and its popularity and longevity are testament to its benefits. These include weight loss, relief from back, neck and shoulder pain, healing and preventing sports injury, relief from depression, anxiety, stress, increased fitness and stamina, relief from insomnia, better digestion, relief from asthma, arthritis and a wide range of chronic conditions.