Bikram yoga is a type of yoga developed in 1979’s by Bikram Choudhury. The poses in this yoga are based on Hatha yoga. It has gained importance with the wide range of benefits it has on an overall body in a short period of time.
Bikram yoga involves 26 poses and breathing exercise for a period of 90 minutes. It refreshes the body by supplying fresh and oxygenated blood to 100% of the body. It brings balance to the body by augmenting energy, stamina, flexibility. Bikram yoga massages, stretches and squeezes the internal organs of the body and flushes out the cardiovascular system, stimulating endocrine and nervous system. It then releases the unwanted and toxic hormones and enzymes from the body.
Poses and practices of Bikram yoga:
In Bikram yoga rooms are warmed and heated up to 105 degrees Fahrenheit or 41-degree Celsius, with about 40 percent humidity. It is the reason, Bikram yoga is also known as Hot yoga. The rooms are kept hot so that they help in easy stretching of the muscles.
The breathing techniques are of two types in Bikram yoga. They are 80-20 breathing method and exhalation breathing method.
80-20 breathing method: Take a full breath, assume the pose and exhale 20 percent of the air through the nose.
Exhalation method: Take a full breath, and exhale all along while you assume the pose.
26 Bikram yoga postures and their benefits:
Standing Deep breathing(Pranayama) : Increases circulation by expanding lungs. Increases core temperature and prepare the muscles for exercise.
Half moon pose: It is practiced in two poses.
Pada Hastasana: Improves blood circulation to head and brain. Enhances flexibility.
Arda Chandrasana: Promotes proper functioning of digestive system. Strengthens and increases the flexibility of the central part of the body.
Awkward Pose (Utkatasana): Increases blood circulation. Firms lower part of the body and legs. Cures slipped disc and lumbago in the lower spine.
Eagle pose (Garudasana): Enhances balance and concentration. Increases lymphatic circulation and strengthens shoulders, back, and legs. It also helps in enhancing sexual power.
Standing head to knee pose (Dandayamana-Janu Shirshasana): Balances and increases the mental state. Improves flexibility of sciatic nerves and muscles of legs, backs, biceps and triceps.
Standing Bow-Pulling Pose (Dandayamana Dhanurasana): Increases circulation in heart and lungs. Increases flexibility and strengthens the abdominal, spine and thigh areas. Helps in a better balancing of mental levels.
Balancing Stick Pose (Tuladandasana): Increases concentration. Improves functioning of digestive system, circulation, and heart, thereupon cleansing arteries and veins.
Standing Separate-Leg Stretching Pose (Dandayamana Bibhaktapada Paschimottanasana): Balances endocrine system, nervous system and circulation to the brain. Helps fighting diabetes and depression.
Triangle Pose (Trikonasana): Enriches functioning of the endocrine system, hormonal balance, and all the organs and bones in the body. Revives tissues, nerves, and veins.
Standing Separate-Leg Head-to-Knee Pose (Dandayamana Bibhaktapada Janushirasana): Modulates metabolism, immune system, and balances the functioning of thyroid gland. Detoxifies the body and also compresses and stabilizes thyroid gland.
Tree Pose (Tadasana): Strengthens oblique muscles and prevents a hernia. Relieves from belly pain and tension in the lower back.
Toe Stand Pose (Padangustasana): Eases rheumatism of knees, feet, and ankle. Develops patience, focus and strengthens from the deep levels. Cures hemorrhoid problems.
Corpse Pose (Savasana): Cleanses internal organs by improving blood flow and circulation. Alleviates headaches, insomnia, and fatigue. Gives overall relaxation.
Wind-Removing Pose (Pavanamuktasana): Enriches digestive system and transverse colon. Helps in fighting chronic abdominal discomforts, mainly flatulence.
Bikram Yoga Sit-Up Pose: Increases flexibility of spine and core strength. Fuels willpower and energy.
Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana): Promotes healthy functioning of reproductive system and alleviates pains from menstrual cycles. Enhances liver and spleen functions.
Locust Pose (Salabhasana): Strengthens upper back, arms, hamstrings, and calves. Helps in curing arthritis and scoliosis. Builds concentration and perseverance.
Full Locust Pose (Purna Salabhasana): Improves liver, spleen, and digestive functions. Strengthens upper spine and increases elasticity in the rib cage.
Floor Bow Pose (Dhanurasana): Develops focus and determination. Increases heart and lung circulations. Fights and elevates from all kinds of pains in the back.
Fixed Firm Pose (Supta Vajrasana): Increases circulation and flexibility in the middle and lower parts of the body.
Half Tortoise Pose (Ardha Kurmasana): Increases the flow of blood to the brain, thereupon increasing the mental ability. Strengthens and increases the flexibility in spine, shoulders, hips and glutes.
Camel Pose (Ustrasana): Stimulates nervous system by the compressing spine. It rejuvenates thymus, thyroid, and parathyroid which enhances circadian rhythms, digestion, and metabolism.
Rabbit Pose (Sasangasana): Stretches spine to increase the power of nervous system for proper nutrient intake. Helps in fighting spinal degenerative problems like cervical spondylosis and kyphoscoliotic deformities. It also treats insomnia and depression.
Head-to-Knee Pose (Janu Shirshasana) and Stretching Pose (Paschimottanasana): Increases circulation to organs and glands. It also a good deal for functioning of the lymphatic and immune system. It is one of the best poses to augment and expand solar plexus.
Spine Twisting Pose (Ardha Matsyendrasana): Deep twist in the pose improves digestion and elimination. Helps in soothing the nervous system. Alleviates lower back and spinal pains.
Blowing in Firm Pose (Kapalbhati in Vajrasana): Enriches circulation and respiration. Strengthens abdominal organs and cools down the body. Clears and gives clarity to emotions and thoughts.
Things to follow in Bikram yoga:
- Must be able to handle the heat.
- Drink enough water during and after yoga practice. Keep yourself hydrated all day.
- Eat snacks or light food before doing yoga. Ensure that your stomach is empty while practicing yoga.
- Do not wear clothes that warm the body.
- Do not push your limits too much. Try deepening the postures day by day in the slow process.
- Let the sweat flow, do not wipe during the yoga sessions. It maintains your body temperature.
We all know that yoga is one of the most healthiest exercise enhancing our overall health. Bikram yoga adds a level in yoga. The hot temperature rooms, deep stretching, and repeated process enhances the benefits of yoga.
It is one of the most popular yoga to tone increase flexibility and fights obesity. Many celebrities around the world practice this yoga to maintain their bodies fit all the time.
You should also try it. Not just to maintain your body, but to make yourself hot!!