Here at Upstate, we love practicing in a heated room. We love the feeling of walking into a room and feeling the warmth on our body and we love feeling sweat dripping on our skin as we move and stretch. At our studios you’ll find a range of temperatures for our classes. Our hot pilates, power flow and sculpt yoga classes are heated to 34 degrees, bikram yoga classes are heated to 39 degrees, while things like yin yoga are only in a warm room at a lower 22. Why do we love a heated room so much? Here are some of the amazing benefits of moving your body when it’s nice and warm.
It aids in detoxification of the body
One of the often talked about benefits of hot yoga is detoxification. This is due to the increased chance of sweating and deeper breathing during your practice. While the notion of sweat and detoxifying is a hot debate, there is evidence that suggests it helps. It’s been shown that phthalates (found in things like plastic toys, paints etc), BPA (found in plastics), and heavy metals (eg mercury) can be found in sweat but not always in blood and urine. When aiding the detoxification process, it’s important to ensure you don’t get dehydrated as the liver and kidneys play a huge roll in detoxifying the body and they can’t function well without sufficient water supply.
In addition, deep breathing can help to clear the lungs of toxins. As we work a little harder in a heated room, we breathe more and deeper, making this process easier. Bikram Yoga is well known for its specific breathing exercises performed at the beginning and end of each class to eliminate toxins in the lungs.
It helps to maintain glowing skin
When we sweat, we expel dirt and grime from our pores. And sweat also helps to keep skin moist and hydrated. This can be especially helpful in Winter when we cover up and use a lot of artificial heating. This means your skin is less likely to experience breakouts or dryness and you’ll develop a natural glow only given by healthy and happy skin.
It helps us build focus and concentration
A hot room tests us at the best of times. When you’re holding a killer pose while there is sweat dripping from your face and all you want to do is get out of it, you have to hone your will power, focus, and determination a little more. In yoga this fire and heat that we build and stay in is called Tapas. It builds discipline and in turn makes us better yogis and better people.
You work a little harder
The heat increases our heart rate, without even having to do anything. This turns a more gentle practice into cardio. This is amazing for the entire system. It increases our cardiovascular abilities, increases the amount of calories burned in a class, and speeds up our metabolism.
Heat is therapeutic
Heat therapy has been used for centuries. When the body is heated, more blood vessels dilate, which promotes blood flow. Increased blood flow can aid in pain relief. Toxins can be flushed out of injured areas of the body allowing for better range of movement. It’s especially beneficial for lower back pain, muscle aches and pains, and arthritis.