Bikram Yoga Is A Hot Mashup!

Bikram yoga is really getting to be hot these days! No kidding.  While the term “Bikram” is actually copyrighted, it’s used together with several other related styles and sequence variations. A number of articles on the web recently appeared that made me want to bring them together for your consideration. First up is the Mother Nature Network where Starre Vartan does a very thorough job of defining what is and might not be Bikram style yoga.

Bikram Yoga Is A Hot Mashup!

Bikram yogais often referred to interchangably with the term “hot yoga,” but they aren’t exactly the same thing. Bikram refers to the style of yoga popularized by yoga master Bikram Choudhury, which includes a specific sequence of 26 poses — the Bikram name is trademarked and copyrighted — and there have been several lawsuits over use of the name and sequencing.

Hot yoga, however, can encompass any type of yoga (usually it’s a Vinyasa flow style) and what it has in common with Bikram is simply that it’s practiced in a room that’s heated to 95-100 degrees Fahrenheight. People who practice hot yoga styles tend to swear by it, because it’s a very cleansing experience and whatever water weight you might be carrying is nixed. Other people (like myself) find the hot conditions too uncomfortable and that the heat actually interferes with their focus or enjoyment of practicing yoga. You really have to try it out to see if it’s right for you.
Whether you practice Bikram or another type of hot yoga (like Moksha or Baptiste Power Yoga), the below information is applicable.
An article that appeared in HealthyLivingAZCentral.Com by Elle Di Jensenof Demand Media pointed out the specific mental as well as physical benefits of true Bikram style hot yoga practices. She emphasized the mental benefits in particular.

Bikram hot yoga

Bikram yoga is practiced in 26 sequenced poses in a hot environment. Photo by Hemera Technologies c/o Photos.Com.

Hot yoga, also known as Bikram yoga, is a practice that was developed by Bikram Choudhury. The 26 poses that comprise the routines aren’t the only thing you’ll master in hot yoga. It’s conducted in a room that has been heated to 105 degrees Fahrenheit to loosen the muscles and allow for further stretching. There are hot yoga practices other than Bikram, but it is Choudhury’s practice that is offered in yoga centers around the globe because of the structure and consistency.
The increasing popularity of both styles, Bikram yoga and “hot yoga,” which is pointed out by writer Beth W. Orenstein at EverydayHealth.Com as simply a variation of the Vinyasa style of yoga, has made them increasingly in demand.  This has put these styles into the forefront as far as getting into classes and finding suitably trained instructors who can match them to your individual fitness goals.

Introduced in the 1970s, Bikram yoga has been gaining in popularity ever since. Many believe it to be the fastest growing of all yoga methods. Right along with it, hot yoga, which is typically a hot version of the Vinaysa style has been growing in popularity.

Bikram yoga consists of a series of 26 postures and two breathing exercises performed with a group in a room heated to a temperature of 105 degrees (hot Vinaysa is typically performed at a slightly lower temperature). The sequence of poses, or asanas, is designed to work every part of your body, including your muscles, joints, glands, and organs.

“Bikram yoga is scientifically designed to warm, stretch, strengthen, and detoxify the body from the inside out,” explains Erin Cleary Cook, owner and director of Bikram Yoga Main Line in Berwyn, Pa.

This yoga method is named for Bikram Choudhury, who began studying hatha yoga when he was 4. By the age of 12, he’d become the youngest-ever national yoga champion of India — a title he held for three consecutive years until his guru asked him to stop competing so other participants could have a chance, Cook says. Bikram continued his athletic career as a marathon runner and a champion weight lifter, setting world records and competing in the 1964 Olympics.

When Bikram was 20, he crushed his knee in a weight-lifting accident and wasn’t expected to walk again. Guided by his guru, Bikram developed his 26-posture series to restore his health and rehabilitate his knees. He quickly developed a following as an expert yoga teacher.

To find out just what Bikram yoga can do for your physical and mental well being, go to everydayhealth.com:

Finally, writer and Bikram yoga enthusiast Melanie Swan decided to take on the 30-Day Bikram yoga challenge by practicing the technique for 30 days consecutively and seeing what it would result in for herself. She chronicled her exploits for The National.

Embarking on something for 30 consecutive days didn’t seem so tough at first. Practising every day allowed me to fine-tune postures to a degree I’d not done before. It was amazing how much improvement I could feel within the first 10 days, certain things finally falling into place. However, I was soon tight and sore, something yoga usually combats for me, and by day five, I suddenly realised there was no “rest day” like I would usually incorporate into training.

I found the biggest benefit to be what I took off the mat with me into my daily life. Being instructed to breath in a controlled manner, through the nose and not the mouth, is possibly one of the most useful techniques, whether you are trying to control your breathing for sports or when in a stressful situation. Controlling your breath is more challenging than you’d think, but breathing calmly makes for a calmer mind.

Original article here at thenational.ae:

Whether you decide to start or to continue practicing Bikram yoga, or if reading these accounts talks you out of it, there’s ultimately a best style for everyone, no matter their age or condition. Be sure to always consult with your personal physician if you intend to start a yoga program. If you’re considering one of the high temperature varieties, make sure your health will allow for it and check with your doctor before hand.

Yoga and meditation techniques can provide many dimensions of health and wellness benefits. The body, mind and the spirit all benefit from walking the path. The longer you walk it, the further you go.

Please share your thoughts and experiences with yoga and meditation here by leaving a comment below. You can also click on one of the numerous like buttons and let others know what about what you may have discovered here.

Through practice, I’ve come to see that the deepest source of my misery is not wanting things to be the way they are. Not wanting myself to be the way I am. Not wanting the world to be the way it is. Not wanting others to be the way they are. Whenever I’m suffering, I find this war with reality to be at the heart of the problem.                                 — Stephen Cope

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