With a global following, and famous devotees such as Lady Gaga and George Clooney, Bikram Yoga has, literally, become one the hottest workouts around. Introduced by yogi, Bikram Choundury, Bikram Yoga is a precise series of twenty-six postures and breathing exercises performed in ninety minutes, and in a studio heated to 40 degrees Celsius. The temperature relaxes muscles, allowing for deeper stretches while preventing injuries.
Though it sounds a bit bonkers to perform poses in heat, especially in sweltering Singapore, the fact is, Bikram not only helps tone and trim, but can also reduce stress and improve medical conditions such as back pain, fatigue, diabetes, heart disease and insomnia, among others.
What to know before handling the heat
Diane Lee, Certified Bikram Yoga Instructor at Bikram Yoga City Hall, shares her tips:
Drink up: Hydrate yourself with plenty of water before and after class.
Dare to bare: Wear minimal and lightweight clothing such as a sports bra and aerobic shorts.
Don’t be late: Arrive 15 minutes early so you’re on your mat before the instructor comes in.
Take it slow: Pace yourself and don’t be afraid to sit down. Feeling a little light-headed during your first few sessions is normal.
Keep an open mind: Give 100 percent, but don’t expect perfection; it takes a few classes to get the hang of it.
Sweat and repeat: Don’t wait to take your second class. Your body needs to acclimatise, so frequent classes will help accelerate that process.