Bikram Yoga: Get out of the comfort zone with asanas at 40 degrees
Bikram Yoga trains endurance, strength and mobility. The special thing about it: You train at 40 degrees. We reveal what the sweaty workout brings and whether the yoga style suits you.
90 minutes of intensive yoga flow are not sweaty enough for you? Then you should try Bikram Yoga.
Bikram or Hot Yoga is practiced at a room temperature of 40 degrees Celsius. This should not only drive sweat out of the pores, but also make you more flexible and strengthen your muscles and immune system.
We reveal what is behind the yoga style, what effects the practice can have on body and mind, and what you should consider as a newcomer
What is Bikram Yoga?
The term Bikram derives from the inventor of the yoga style, Bikram Choudhury. In the late 1960s, to recover from a knee injury, he developed the sequence of breathing exercises and yoga postures (asanas) that are still practiced today.
The special – and joint-gentle – thing about it: The exercises are carried out at a room temperature of around 40 degrees and a humidity of at least 40 percent.
This combination of heat and humidity is designed to warm the muscles, ligaments, and tendons to allow deeper stretches with less risk of injury.
Bikram Yoga Effect and benefits
Anyone who practices Bikram Yoga works up a sweat. This natural reaction of the body can have many positive effects:
- Connective tissue, tendons and muscles become more flexible
- The fascia become supple and moisturized, the body can be better supplied with nutrients
- Tensions and other physical and psychological blockages are released
- A lot of fresh oxygen is transported into the blood, the circulation is stimulated
- Toxins are eliminated through sweat, the body can detoxify
- Up to 700 calories can be burned per session
- The borderline experience strengthens self-confidence and self-control
Who is Bikram Yoga suitable for?
The high room temperature in connection with the sometimes demanding asanas can cause dizziness. So if you have circulatory problems and high or low blood pressure, you should get the green light from the doctor and carefully approach Bikram Yoga.
Important for all yogis: Drink plenty of water both before and after the class! You can only benefit from the positive effects of yoga practice if you are sufficiently hydrated.
Otherwise, Bikram Yoga is something for everyone – whether beginner or professional – who enjoys new sporting challenges, wants to explore their physical limits and loves heat.
What can you expect in a Bikram yoga class?
A Bikram yoga class lasts 90 minutes and consists of a series of 26 asanas that have their origins in Hatha Yoga. A special focus is on the spine. The back is strengthened in the various positions from top to bottom.
The following applies to beginners: consciously listen to your body and do not force yourself to do all the yoga exercises. Breaks are totally okay and not a sign of weakness.
Best 26 Asana in Bikram Yoga
The Asana also include two breathing exercises that are performed at the beginning and end of each hour.
- Deep Breathing (Pranayama)
- Half Moon with Back and Forward Bends (Ardha Chandrasana and Padahastasana)
- Squat Pose (Utkatasana)
- Eagle (Garurasana)
- Standing Forehead to Knee (Dandayamana-Janushirasana)
- Standing Bow (Dandayamana-Dhanurasana)
- Libra (Tuladandasana)
- Forehead to the floor in straddle (Dandayamana-Bibhaktapada-Pashimothanasana)
- Triangle (Trikanasana)
- Forehead to knee in straddle (Dandayamana-Bibhaktapada-Janushirasana)
- Tree (Tadasana)
- Tiptoe Stand (Padagustasana)
- Corpse Pose (Savasana)
- Abdominal Press (Pavanamuktasana)
- Seated forward bend (sit-up)
- Cobra (Bhujangasana)
- Half Grasshopper (Salabhasana)
- Whole Locust (Poorna-Salabhasana)
- Lying Arch (Dhanurasana)
- Hero Pose (Supta-Vajrasana)
- Half Turtle (Ardha Kurmasana)
- Camel (Ustrasana)
- Rabbit (Sasangasana)
- Seated Head to Knees (Janushirasana-Paschimothanasana)
- Spinal Rotation Seat (Ardha-Matsyentrasana)
- Fire breathing (Khapalabhati)