Hot yoga has countless benefits such as warming muscles, reducing risk of injury, increasing blood supply, lubrication of joints and increasing heart rate. It is, however, really important to prepare properly for yoga practice in the heat in order to fully enjoy those benefits. Whether you are new to yoga entirely, or just new to practicing yoga in a heated studio, here are seven ways to help your body adjust to hot yoga:
1. Hydrate before class
Hot yoga teachers put a lot of emphasis upon drinking water throughout class but it is also essential to ensure you are hydrated to begin with. Dehydration can cause dizziness, nausea and headaches. Make sure you drink plenty of fluids, preferably water, before you arrive at your hot yoga class.
2. Select pre-yoga fuel carefully
As with any exercise it is advisable to eat 2-3 hours before attending a hot yoga class. Of course we realise life doesn’t always allow for this, so if you need to eat within an hour of practicing then choose an easily digestible snack such as fruit, porridge or greek yoghurt.
3. Bring the right equipment
It can get seriously sweaty and slippy in a hot yoga class! Make sure you are prepared with the correct equipment for your own comfort and safety. Hot yoga essentials are a grippy mat, a towel and water. You can buy or rent all of these in our studio in case you forget!
4. Modify the practice
Even if you are used to practicing yoga at room temperature the experience can be considerably more intense at 40 degrees. Take care not to push your body to it’s limits in your first few classes. Use props, modify poses and listen to the layered options given by the teacher. The most important thing is to feel steady and grounded throughout your practice.
5. Resting isn’t cheating
It’s okay to have a rest! Listen to your body and reconnect with your breath. Take a few breaths in Child’s Pose whenever you feel overheated or fatigued.
6. Get some fresh air
If the heat becomes too much for you then take a few minutes to step out of the class and get some fresh air. Pop to the bathroom and splash some cold water on your face before returning to the studio. Just be mindful not to disturb other class members, and rejoin the flow at an appropriate point.
7.Hydrate after class
Just like before and during the class it’s important to keep drinking lots of water after class. Continued hydration is key to aiding your body’s recovery and avoiding symptoms of dehydration. Drinks that contain electrolytes, such as coconut water, will also help to replace sodium and potassium lost through perspiration.
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