Hot Yoga. What to expect.

THE 

STUDIO 

ATHLETE

Your 1st Hot Yoga Class

 Just to address any pre-existing feelings you have about the brand name Bikram, yes, Bikram Choudhury took some heat for the streaming documentary. Bikram is a flow done in a HOT setting, not every hot yoga is Bikram. Many studios teach the Bikram flow and don't endorse the behavior of one man. Hot Yoga is a term that encompasses many mat practices like Flow, Warrior, Ashtanga, Yin, Barre, Bikram and more.


The obvious relation between all of the styles is the heat.¬† Prepare yourself for 90-105¬įF. I feel comfortable in the high 90's, 105¬į¬†would be beyond my threshold. So for your first class, I recommend staying under 100¬įF.


 You are going to sweat, embrace it. The sweat will drip, fly around and hopefully stay off your neighbor but it does happen. I think most of the  Bromidrophobics and Hydrosis fearful steer clear of hot yoga, so don't be self conscious. If your wondering, the above referenced are fear of body smell and excessive sweating.


Most studios will have some pleasant sprays and candles burning which makes it pleasant, occasionally there are more "au natural" attendees that might bring a little musk. I have never been ultra bothered by the occasional scent but that's just me.


With all this talk about sweat, let talk about containing it. My gym supplies towels and you can have as many as you desire, I use one at the head of my mat folded width wise twice so I have a thick towel to rest my head on and it keeps the edge of my other towel down on the mat since I overlap it a little. The main towel is laid out the length of the mat. The long towel isn't just for sweat, it also helps give you traction so you don't slip. To round out my towel hoarding, I have one small wash cloth towel for wiping my face and arm and another towel that I keep unused until the end and use it to wipe down my mat and surroundings with the cleaning solution provided.


+Pro Tip: Water down your base towel with water before class so the towel stays put on the mat. Don't skip on the water, I literally take the lid off the spray bottle and dump it on.


Now that the prep is done, enjoy yourself. If you are new to yoga in general, look for a guided class that will call out instructions, not just a pose to fall into. After a few hundred classes I still like having instructions but I think my move vocab is getting pretty sharp.


What to wear? Not a whole lot. As a male I just wear shorts with a breathable material from Vuori. A shirt becomes a tangled straight jacket for me so I ditch it before class and I have it dry for after. Women are almost always in a sports bra/shirt with leggings or shorts, Vuori also makes very nice women's athletic gear which compares well to LuLuLemon.


At the end of class you will have a grand sense of accomplishment as you fade into your "savasana" or corpse pose.  Basically lay there and absorb.. The end of class generally concludes with hands at prayer or third eye above your brow with the words "Namaste". Namaste is truly what you want it to be, a Hello, a Goodbye or a Closure to your practice.


A few other suggestions, put ice in your water. If you get too hot, pour some on a small towel and apply to your head or face. Also, remember the coolest air is at the floor level, so if you need some air go low. One last thing, there will be hotter spots in the room based on the heating system. Find a spot away from the vents if you want it a little cooler.

If you have been meaning to give it a try, GO FOR IT. Book a class this week and enjoy. You will feel AMAZING after.  Don't forget to fuel your body before, during and after with great supplements from Shake Chef.

Namaste,

THE STUDIO ATHLETE

What to Bring

It's going to be hot, so pick these items up ahead of time. It may be a good idea to start with a short duration class as well under 1 hour.


Water!

Bring more than you think you will need and come well hydrated. Dehydration has a multitude of consequences on the body. We like the Hydro Flask 32 ounce.


Snack

An empty stomach can lead to fainting and I have seen it in person. Have a snack before you go and bring something if you get hungry. We like the Cliff Bar multi pack with regular and mini sized options. White Chocolate Macadamia!


Yoga Mat

A good mat is important. Look for something that is all natural and 6ft. We like the Alo mat with dry wicking and anti-slip. Comes in some really fun colors too.



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