My Introduction Into the World of Hot Yoga
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My wife Kim has been practicing Yoga for approximately five years, and we have seen many of the Hot Yoga benefits provided to her Body, Soul, and Mind.
I, on the other hand, had little interest in becoming the next yogi candidate only seeing Hot Yoga Disadvantages with going into a Hot/Humid room and contorting my body into a pretzel for an hour!!!
Some will say that I am wound as tight as they come both physically and mentally.
I had been working out at a Crossfit gym for approximately five months and felt that was enough for me!
Kim has also “diagnosed me” with having ADHD, with the attention span of a five-year-old! So, I did not think Yoga was my thing.
Forced My Hand!
In early February I hurt my back. Doing what you ask? I have no idea. It may have been at the gym? Playing with the dog?
Or maybe just sleeping in an awkward position due to sharing a bed with my snoring wife, large boxer and inevitably two kids crawling in bed with us at some point during the night!?!
I lost 33 pounds in the “Biggest Loser” program and was maintaining my weight by eating right and working out regularly. So now what do I do?
Kim had made the comment that this was a perfect opportunity to discover the Hot Yoga benefits and give it a try. Working out at the gym was not an option and I could use more flexibility for my golf swing.
But, I was worried about the Hot Yoga disadvantages that I had been hearing rumors about! worrying I would look like an idiot newbie, fall over and probably pull a hammy, pass out, etc.
In the end, I figured why not, better than sitting on the couch watching TV! Also, I was determined not to gain any weight while away from the gym and thought it may help ease my back pain!
Prepping For My 1st Practise
I had to wait a week before taking the plunge and heading to my 1st class! I had to have Kim prepare me for what I was about to endure and show me some poses so I would not look like a fool!
We went out and bought some LULULEMON shorts and t-shirts of course!
Fitting in with all the other “YOGI’s” was critical! Crazy Right! But this is who I am! So I was 100% ready to get started! No problem! Here we go. Yoga mat in hand, water bottle and of course my LuLu’s!
Here We Go!
As we headed to my first class I was asking questions about what if I have to go to the washroom, have gas or pass out!
I think Kim was ready to drop me off at the side of the road on our way to the studio, regretting ever introducing me to this world!
As we entered the studio I was introduced to some of the instructors and the owner Dianne.
Everyone was super nice and gave me lots of information on what was going to occur in the “Hot Room.” Apparently, I was doing a “Moksha” Class! This is the best class for beginners!
They told me that once I entered the hot room, there would be no talking and we are encouraged not to leave the room and interrupt the class!
Pose, Sweat, H2O, Shavasana, Repeat!!
As I entered the “Hot Room” for the first time, I felt the heat hit me like a Mac truck. Wow, it was hot! I immediately looked for a corner of the room where I could escape from the “experienced” Yogi’s.
Mission accomplished! We found a spot with a wall to my right, back and Kim to my left!
Next, we had to get a block that looked like a huge brick (more on that later!) and a strap to aid in “some” of the poses! “Some” for me, turned out to be all of them!
The Instructor put on some soothing music and we began on our backs in
The instructor quietly explained the structure of this practice and the progressive series of 40 poses that we would be working through for the next hour.
I Made It!!!
So, I made it through the class with only a couple of breaks and a lot of assistance from the instructor, “Brick” support and strap! I almost passed out only 4 times from the intensity of the poses and heat, but I made it through!
Honestly, this was one of the tougher workouts I have ever done, and I have been through Crossfit, Running, Football, Hockey, etc.
For the past 44 years, I have never moved my body into the positions I did with Hot Yoga! But I really felt the benefits of the poses after the class.
Drink lots of water before the class!! This is important. I got dehydrated and that’s when I felt light-headed because I did not have enough fluid.
During the class, I found it very relaxing and the poses worked every muscle in my body!
Walking out of the studio feeling amazing! Not sure what it was, but it felt great. All the tension and stress that my body was feeling before the class was gone!
Hot Yoga Disadvantages
While I have talked a lot about my 1st experience with hot yoga and the benefits that go along with the practice, You may be asking yourself are there any Hot Yoga Disadvantages or safety issues?
My answer to the question will be the same as if you had asked about the disadvantages of any sport, exercise that you have to exert energy and physical movements that you may not have ever done or not been physically active for a long time.
I will try to answer your questions about a few of the Hot Yoga Disadvantages below:
- Dehydration – You can quickly become dehydrated during class if you have not taken precautions and consumed enough water before and during class to stay hydrated. Like I stated earlier in the article, during my first class I almost passed out a few times! I quickly learned that I was not drinking enough water before class.
- Make you Feel Nauseous – This is the main risk for newbies! I found that the first 10+ minutes in the hot room to be challenging to adjust to, I was not used to the heat and did not drink enough water; However, the feeling you feel exiting the hot room is awesome and can not be easily explained.
- Risk of Injury – Performing stretching in the heat allows you to get into deeper stretches (poses) during class. Depending on your fitness level, and again this can be prevalent for newbies like me! You may tend to push your stretching beyond your capabilities, especially when you are starting out. The risk lowers as you progress further in classes.
- It Can Be Difficult – Finding yoga difficult can be considered a good thing or bad, depending on why it is difficult for you. If you are a newbie and finding the class difficult, it can be viewed as a good thing as your body is adjusting to the new poses and positions your body has never been placed, this is your body telling you that you need to continue to work those areas for better fitness and flexibility. If you don’t have the patience or prefer a more rigorous workout, you will find hot yoga difficult and not stick with the practice.
In closing about hot yoga disadvantages, I would advise that you check with your doctor before any type of new exercise program to ensure that you are physically and mentally able to perform Yoga in the hot room.
Is my Future In Hot Yoga?
Although I would love to tell you that I am still practicing Yoga 8 months later, I would be lying! My Hot Yoga experience continued for about two months, and as soon as my back started to feel, better, I got back into Crossfit and hadn’t looked back.
Yoga provided a good stretch and piece of mind; However, I find that an aggressive constantly moving workout with many different tasks is what I require! I guess Kim was correct! ADHD 100%.
There is a class that would fill this need called “Power Fusion” but I have not summoned the courage to try that one yet.
Kim continues to practice regularly at Moksha Yoga and still gets a lot out of her classes. I, on the other hand, am still working out in with CrossFit and running regularly, this is enough action for me!
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