Are you a beginner and afraid of hot Yoga? This post is for you.
If you are starting something new you might be anxious, especially when other people are saying it’s hard.
Yoga is a practice for everyone, regardless of age. The practice has a variety of styles so everybody has his/her own class in whatever place you are. So if you want to get your body into the shape you want, hot yoga will do it for you. If you are new to it, you have got no reason to be anxious about it.
Even though the practice is believed to be tiresome with a lot of pains, hot Yoga has become one of the most sort-after exercises by many people worldwide. So you should not be afraid of it at all. It is high-energy, indeed, but anyone is free to practice at their own pace, because all yoga is first and foremost about community.
The hot yoga scene can feel threatening when you try to imagine it, but our tips will help you remove all the anxiety you have about it so that you feel comfortable, confident and prepared when starting your hot yoga or Bikram yoga class.
As you know, or you have already heard from different people, or read from different publications, yoga can maximize flexibility, reduce stress and even ease minor pains. Why not try it so that you can reap the benefits too?
Let’s get started!
1. Why do you need Yoga?
First things first: “Before you start a yoga class, know why you are interested in it and what your goals are”, advices John Collins a professional yoga instructor at Assignment Masters. Do you want to relieve stress? Do you want to shape your body into an amazing form? Do you want to be flexible?
Once you identify the reason and your goals for the Yoga class, you will be in a good position to choose a class. Once you have chosen your yoga class, notice your experience after each exercise. This will make you be in a better position to obtain feedback on what you need to do next until you get used to yoga completely.
2. Dress appropriately
Choosing the right yoga equipment can be confusing. However, dressing appropriately doesn’t have to mean that you spend a lot of money on expensive pants. But, you should ensure to put on something that is suitable for your class. Note that the exercise is somewhat strenuous so you will sweat a lot thus try to dress appropriate to the occasion. Tight fitting clothes that absorb sweat are your best bet.
Some yoga styles require certain kinds of attire, but yoga pants are common across all practices. Today there are new sweatpants on the market that are really when it comes to keeping sweat under control. In fact, in some classes, you will not be allowed in with attire made of cotton and some baggy clothes. Ladies are not allowed to dress in bikinis, either, so leggings and a tank top are the best choice. Men can put on shorts and not baggy shirts.
3. Find a good beginner class
If you will seek recommendations for what class to attend, find out if the teacher is known to help new people in the yoga class. This is good especially for people with injuries or some other illness that need to be considered while going on with the practice. There are plenty of yoga classes and retreats for beginners, you just need to pick your favorite.
4. Understand what you need to carry with you
Once you have chosen a yoga studio to practice, find out what you are required to come with. Some yoga studios offer people with mats and towels while others require people to carry their own. It is advisable for people to carry their own mat and towels, especially if you wish to continue practicing for a long period of time. In fact, for hygiene purposes, it’s good to carry your own props.
Note that for a yoga class, you must carry a towel for your face and hands. However, if you don’t have all these things, you can ask the studio if you can borrow. Once you arrive, pay attention to what others are taking or simply ask your teacher what things you will need which could include a strap, some blocks and a blanket.
5. Get to the studio early
You need to prepare yourself to be at the studio 10 to 25 minutes before your class begins. This will help to prepare yourself in case there will be some writing and also set up yourself without rushing. Note that you will probably arrive while wearing your clothes and your yoga clothes will be in a bag, so arriving early will allow you time to take off your socks and shoes and put them in a safe place.
Getting to the studio early will also allow you to find out a comfortable location in the studio where you will be confident. You might want to stay close to your teacher so you can be looking and hearing what he/she has to say or you might want to stay in a hidden location. Place your mat down vertically facing the instructor.
6. Interact with your yoga teacher
Many yogis shy away from their teachers, but you need to know that your teacher’s aim is to help and direct you on what to do. Yoga teachers are supportive and encouraging - they don’t want beginners to have a bad experience while starting their yoga classes. Let your teacher know you are a beginner and they will provide you with adjustment and more detail directions. Always let your teacher know if you have an existing illness or an injury that could affect your exercise. This will help your teacher to provide you with some adjustments where needed.
Note that most yoga styles are adjustable according to your needs. For instance, pregnant women or people with back pain should inform the teacher, so that she / he can make some appropriate adjustments on the poses for you as well as your unborn baby to be safe as you practice.
7. Ensure you are hydrated and don’t eat too much food
It is important to drink a lot of water so that you stay hydrated throughout the exercise. Note that you should ensure to drink pure water. Avoid drinking tea, soda or coffee. Some yoga studios have water available, but you might want to carry your own bottle of water so that you can place it close to your mat. Drinking plenty water is not only meant to replace the water you will lose when you sweat, but will also be helpful for improvement of the circulation and also detoxification of your body. In fact, drinking a lot of water is helpful for weight loss.
Also, you should try not to eat before your yoga class. However, it will depend on how you prefer to exercise, some people find it good to practice while hungry and others would prefer to take a light snack before starting their class. It is good to understand that when you drink too much water and eat large meals you will not be comfortable during the yoga exercise.
Don’t be concerned about appearing foolish or clumsy in your first yoga class. Everyone in the yoga class is busy with their own exercises so no one is looking at what others are doing but the teacher.
Your teacher will be observing what each person is doing to ensure everybody is safe and she/he may suggest some adjustment or instructions when needed, in a kind manner. Yoga teachers understand how to deal with new and experienced yogis and will ensure everybody is safe during the practice.
9. Pay attention to your body
The teacher will instruct you to do a series of poses which could strengthen or relax your body. Additionally, the teacher may instruct you to do some breathing exercises. Depending on how fit your body is, there might be some poses that will not be suitable for you at the time. If you experience some difficulties either in breathing or you start to feel dizzy, stop the practice and rest. It is good to request your teacher to do some adjustment that will be more appropriate at the moment.
There you have it. 9 expert tips to help you in your first-time hot yoga class. No matter what condition your body is in, you have a class for that. If you are a beginner in hot yoga, these tips will help you so that you can have a good beginning and enjoy your yoga class. Good luck!
You can read more of Hillary’s blog posts as a freelancer on assigment masters.
Would you like to get in tune with the amazing energy of a hot yoga class? Why not learn the ropes in an amazing hot yoga retreat for the body and the soul? You will come back full of life and ready to take on the world.