Benefits Bikram Yoga

Benefits

Bikram Yoga is a sequence of 26 classic Hatha yoga postures and two breathing exercises practiced in a heated room. It is a challenging, exciting, and vigorous 90-minute series created for everyone, regardless of your fitness level, body type or experience.

Practicing hot yoga brings many benefits to both mind and body:

  • Increased Vitality
  • Increased oxygen and nutrient supply
  • Detoxification Increased blood circulation
  • Reduced cholesterol level
  • Strengthened bones
  • Expanded lung capacity
  • Improved digestion
  • Strengthened immune system
  • Increased balance, strength and flexibility
  • Achievement and maintenance of proper weight
  • Reduced stress
  • Increased mental strength and clarity

Why the heat?

A bikram yoga session consists of scientifically designed sequence of 26 classic hatha yoga asanas. The temperature in the practice room is 41°C. Proper temperature enables a gentle and thorough muscular workout, and helps ensure safer and better stretching of tendons and ligaments. Heat speeds fat burning, increases the heart rate providing intense cardiovascular training, and increases sweating which helps to detoxify and purify the body. Last, but not least – staying in the hot room has a deeply relaxing effect on your body and mind. Bikram calls his series ‘meditation in motion’.

The 26 asanas

1. Pranayama – Deep Breathing

  • Helps relaxation and concentration
  • Quiets mind and centres you in your practice
  • Expands lung capacity
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Detoxifies the body
  • Provides the body with lots of oxygen

2. Ardha Chandrasana Pada Hastana – Half Moon

  • Opens the shoulder area
  • Helps with neck and shoulder tension
  • Reduces pain in the lower back
  • Strenghtens abdominal, glut, and thigh muscles
  • Increases spine flexibility
  • Tones the spinal nerves and abdominal organs (colon, pancreas, kidneys)

3. Utkatasana – Awkward Pose

  • Strengthens the entire muscular system
  • Opens the pelvis
  • Good for arthritic knees
  • Fights cellulite
  • Improves bad posture
  • Stimulates internal organs, particularly the liver and pancreas

4. Garurasana – Eagle

  • Stimulates the central nervous system
  • Improves balance
  • Prevents or reduces varicose veins
  • Strengthens the immune and lymphatic systems
  • Loosens the 14 main joints
  • Strengthens the reproductive organs

5. Dandayamana Janushirasana – Standing Head to Knee

  • Strengthens abdominal, leg and back muscles
  • Builds endurance, will power and concentration

6. Dandayamana Dhanurasana – Standing Bow

  • Engages the cardiovascular system
  • Opens the diaphragm
  • Increases spine elasticity
  • Improves strength and balance
  • Helps regulate ovaries and prostate gland
  • Opens the shoulder area, good for neck and shoulder tension

7. Dandayamana Bibhaktapada Paschimottanasana – Separate Leg Stretching

  • Stimulates blood circulation to the brain, central nervous system and adrenal glands
  • Loosens lower back
  • Helps stabilise the blood sugar level
  • Stretches tendons

8. Trikanasana – Triangle

  • Engages the cardiovascular system
  • Works all the muscle groups, ligaments, heart and lungs, organs and glands simultaneously
  • Increases hip joint flexibility
  • Helps regulate the hormone level
  • Helps with constipation, hypotension and menstrual disorders

9. Dandayamana Bibhaktapada Janushirasana – Standing Separate Leg Head to Knee

  • Stimulates the thyroid gland to improve metabolism
  • Strengthens the abdominal muscles
  • Regulates blood sugar level
  • Stimulates intestinal activity
  • Improves balance
  • Effective against depression

10. Tadasana – Tree

  • Corrects bad posture
  • Improves flexibility in the hip and knee joints
  • Strengthens oblique muscles
  • Reduces back pain
  • Engages the gluteal muscles
  • Good for circulatory problems and rheumatism

11. Padangustasana – Toe Stand

  • Encourages balance
  • Strengthens abdominal muscles
  • Works hip, knee and ankle joints

12. Savasana – Dead Body

  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Slows down heart rate
  • Calms the mind and body
  • Teaches how to relax – in stressful situations, before sleep, etc
  • Helps fight insomnia

13. Pavanamuktasana – Wind Removing Pose

  • Massages the digestive system
  • Reduces back pain
  • Improves flexibility in the hip joints
  • Improves and may cure constipation, flatulence and hyperacidity

14. Bikram Sit-Up

  • Strengthens abdominal muscles
  • Increases energy levels
  • Detoxifying double exhale

15. Bhujangasana – Cobra

  • Improves spine flexibility
  • Rejuvenates spinal nerves by increasing blood flow to the spinal nerves
  • Strengthens back muscles
  • Helps relieve back pain and arthritis
  • Stretches the thoracic area relieving asthma
  • Improves the function of internal organs
  • Improves concentration and willpower

16. Salabhasana – Half Locust

  • Same benefits as cobra
  • Helps conditions of slipped disk and sciatica
  • Firms the gluteal muscles
  • Works and develops back muscles
  • Increases spine flexibility
  • Improves function of the liver and spleen
  • Strengthens shoulder, arm and back muscles

17. Poorna Salabhasana – Full Locust

  • Strengthens abdominal and back muscles
  • Firms the waist and buttocks
  • Improves spine flexibility
  • Prevents lower back pain
  • Helps with spinal disk and arthritis problems
  • Relieves neck tension and menstrual pains

18. Dhanurasana – Floor Bow

  • Increases circulation to the heart and lungs
  • Opens diaphragm and expands the chest region – improves respiratory problems and increases lung capacity
  • Releases shoulder tension or stiff neck
  • Strengthens all the back muscles, abdominal muscles and slims the waist
  • Improves kidney, liver and spleen functions
  • Improves concentration and willpower

19. Supta Vajrasana – Fixed Firm

  • Helps conditions of sciatica, gout, varicose veins and rheumatism in the legs
  • Stretches calve and thigh muscles
  • Increases flexibility in the lower back
  • Stretches the diaphragm
  • Opens the hip joints
  • Prevents back pain

20. Ardha Kurmasana – Half Tortoise

  • Helps with insomnia and migraines
  • Increases relaxation and relieves stress
  • Increases lung capacity
  • Encourages blood flow to the brain
  • Firms the abdominal wall and waist
  • Increases flexibility in the pectoral girdle and works shoulder muscles
  • Increases flexibility in the hip joints

21. Ustrasana – Camel

  • Opens the rib cage and lungs
  • Stretches the digestive tract
  • Stimulates the nervous system
  • Helps with bronchial problems
  • Strengthens back and shoulder muscles
  • Improves flexion of the neck
  • Supplies the kidneys with blood
  • Detoxifies the body

22. Sasangasana – Rabbit

  • Stretches spinal column intensively, esp. the lower section, reducing back pain
  • Increases blood circulation in the nervous system
  • Strengthens back muscles
  • Stimulates thyroid glands through compression, helps regulate metabolism
  • Improves digestion, glandular problems and helps improve conditions of the sinus, common cold and chronic tonsillitis
  • Helps with insomnia

23. Janushirasana mit Paschimottanasana – Head to Knee with Stretching

  • Increases flexibility in foot, knee and hip joints, stretches the sciatic nerve
  • Enhances kidney function
  • Increases circulation to the liver, spleen and pancreas
  • Stretches and strengthens the pelvic girdle, hips, shoulders and spine
  • Stretches the Achilles tendon
  • Encourages concentration and patience

24. Ardha Matsyendrasana – Spinal Twist

  • Increases hip and back flexibility
  • Helps prevent herniated disc
  • Firms the buttocks and shapes the waist
  • Improves elasticity of the vessels, tissues and spinal nerves
  • Opens the rib cage and bronchi
  • Helps lower back pains
  • Massages and stimulates all the internal organs

25. Kapalbhati in Vajrasana – Blowing In Firm

  • Helps detoxify the body
  • Strengthens the abdominal muscles and stimulates abdominal organs
  • Energizes the body and improves the clarity of mind
  • Oxygenates the body
  • Helps regulate high blood pressure