What to Wear to Bikram Yoga Classes and Other Facts about the Activity

What to Wear to Bikram Yoga Classes and Other Facts about the Activity

Bikram yoga is a hot yoga which consists of 26 distinct postures. This amazing style has been invented by Bikram Choudhury, a 74-year old Indian who has been practicing yoga postures since the age of three. Trained professionals can only teach the sessions and would last for 90 minutes, so there’s a lot of sweating and heat to go through.

In addition, 40 ºC or 104 ºF is required with this type of physical activity. Hence, you must know what to wear to Bikram Yoga sessions or what is the most comfortable attire.

What are the Benefits of Bikram Yoga?

Bikram yoga is considered as amongst the perfect alternatives to classic workouts. Excluding the initial discomfort brought about by heat, Bikram yoga brings a lot of benefits, such as weight loss, detoxification, and improved metabolic activity.

It also helps people who suffer from depression and physical pain. Likewise, it aids in the improvement of the practitioner’s mood and health as well as it brings a cleansing sensation.

Heat is an essential part of Hot Yoga in general and Bikram Yoga in particular because it’s easier for the piping hot muscles to align in the necessary postures. With heat, the body becomes more flexible, making it easier for participants to follow instructions.

Bikram yoga really does the muscles a world of good. In fact, it is the equivalent of a combination of a massage, spa day and sauna. Muscles get relaxed, physical pain is greatly alleviated, and recovery is sped up.

In addition, the complexity of the postures will help improve and build muscles, increase the body’s flexibility and bring a great contribution to the prevention and management of diseases such as diabetes and thyroid disorders.

What to Wear to Bikram Yoga Classes?

It’s not easy to pick what to wear to Bikram yoga sessions. Nevertheless, it’s imperative to stay comfortable in the whole process, so a breathable, light material is perfect. Cotton is probably the best choice. It does get a bit tight with heat, but it doesn’t really get hot enough for this to occur in this case.

For women, a sports bra is probably the best approach. There’s nothing wrong with wearing a sports bra; it’s comfortable and provides adequate support for this physical activity and allows the skin to breathe unhindered.

When it comes to bottoms, then a pair of leggings or shorts probably gives the most flexibility and comfort. Just try to avoid shorts that are loose since your behind might be exposed when doing poses.

In addition, you must also avoid wearing baggy pants. They don’t cover the thighs and won’t protect the practitioner from friction. They also tend to get heavier as more sweat builds up, and a damp piece of cotton fabric can really gain some weight.

Fortunately, men have it a bit easier. A cotton T-shirt and some pair of shorts are perfect. If it’s too warm, the T-shirt is really optional. If the practitioner is comfortable with his body, then just wearing a pair of breathable trunks is perfectly acceptable, as long as everyone tolerates it. Just make sure to be squeaky clean before starting.

For both male and female, no shoes are required for this practice as it is best to stay barefooted. Wearing a pair of socks can be an option, but it is not advisable.

What’s the Best Gear to Bring for Bikram Yoga?

As with all types of yoga, the first piece to pack is the yoga mattress. Pick a foam mattress and top it off with an optional cotton mattress. Make sure that they’re not too thick. If the mat is too think, then the knees of the yogi will sink in, causing a big decrease in balance.

The cool thing about topping off a foam mattress with a cotton mattress is that as it gets more and more soaked, the cotton mattress will provide more grip and stability. The only real problem is that the yogi will need a bit more extra space, so it’s impractical for those who leave work and go straight to the studio. In that case, a ¼-inch foam mattress is probably the way to go (even thinner if space is a real issue).

Secondly, you must have a reusable water bottle. This is a must for any sporting activity, but it’s even more important for hot yoga in particular.

If the yogi isn’t really hydrated the whole time, the extreme heat and sweating can bring some serious side effects, like a loss of energy and consciousness. As per recommendation, get a BPA-free plastic water bottle and keep it topped off with fresh water before starting the session.

What are Some Things to Keep in Mind?

Remember that Bikram yoga is a bit of an extremely physical activity. While it is beneficial and effective as therapy, things can go south really fast.

Make sure to pick a class where the instructor takes enough time to correct everyone’s posture. A bad posture can lead to a serious injury, and a loss of progress in case the yogi is trying to recover from physical trauma.

It’s also very important to note that this might not be the perfect practice for weight loss. It’s true that sweating a lot is associated with weight loss, but it’s very important to know that most of it is due to the big amounts of water that are being removed out of the system. That being said, it’s not a bad way to lose weight, just not the best.

Final Thoughts

Always test out and experience everything that can improve the yoga session like lighter clothes, more breathable materials, different meals, and all factors that can have an impact on how enjoyable and helpful the Bikram yoga session would be.

All in all, the most important thing to remember is to obey the trainer’s commands like they’re the 10 commandments. With 26 postures and an average time of 90 minutes per session, things can become potentially dangerous for people who have a more fragile body and immune system.

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