You should do hot yoga, it’s great for overweight people.
That was a recent comment made to me and luckily I’ve been approached with such comments over the years, I can laugh it off.
Then, a new studio sent me a tweet letting me know they would be offering free classes for seven days to celebrate their opening. Although I have never thought to take a regular temperature yoga class at my gym, I was intrigued by a 60-minute class done in a 95-degree studio with 40% humidity.
Admittedly, I’m always game to try something new, especially when it is free. I called ahead to find out if I needed to register and they let me know I could bring my own mat, towel and to drink plenty of water the day of. If there is one thing I excel at, it’s drinking water. Never wanting to keep these good things to myself, I invited my coworkers.
All of us were new to hot yoga and had a great experience. The instructor led us through each pose explaining how we should move and where our limbs should be. As a first-timer who previously only knew yoga from a DVD, his queuing allowed me to close my eyes and move into the pose with the confusion of looking at another student.
We were instructed that if any point we were so overwhelmed by the heat, to take the corpse pose and then come back. No doubt it was hot, but summers in Cincinnati are hot and humid, too. The 90+ people in this class were mostly women ranging in age, we all produced a lot of sweat, and I’m sure when we go home all those mats needed a good wipe down and air out!
If you asked me to go again, I would. If you want my first-timer tips, here goes:
Drink plenty of water the day of or day before you go (if going in the morning)
Wear comfortable clothing – they say loose clothing, but I wore my fitted capris that I always work out in and didn’t have an issue
Wear flip flops or shoes you can easily remove when you arrive since you will practice bare foot (I had to sit on the ground in the lobby putting my socks and shoes back on)
Bring a towel – some had one towel on their mat and another for their face (I only had a face towel)
Bring a mat – you can borrow one, but I prefer to avoid sharing sweat with others
Avoid talking once you enter the studio
Enjoy the experience!
I’ll probably practice yoga once or twice a month to work on my flexibility, but I have no intention of giving up indoor cycling or weight lifting. Also, I’m not under any illusion that I’m sweating off weight or somehow burning more calories due to the increased heat of the room.