Heating The Yoga Room VS. Not Heating The Yoga Room
8 REASONS TO ENJOY A SWEAT IN YOGA CLASS
1. Doing yoga in a heated room warms up the muscles, bones, and ligaments making you less likely to injure yourself and helps increases flexibility.
2. Exercising in the heat increases your tolerance to heat which tends to decline as we age, which is dangerous!
3. You increase blood volume, improve cooling ability, make changes in sweating, increase the vasculature that helps circulation, cooling and exercising at the same time, increase specific chemical compounds in the body that improve health and ability to exercise.
4. When your body heats up it produces heat shock protein. Heat shock proteins protect other proteins in your body from infection, starvation, heat, cold, and other damaging conditions.This is valuable since proteins are the building blocks of the body!
5. Heat shock proteins mobilize immune function against infections and diseases, even cancer.
6. You will experience increased aerobic fitness due to heat adaption.
7. Sweat is beneficial for your skin and body.
8. Air conditioning is not good for you. AC does prevent initial discomfort, but reduces benefits and the ability to be comfortable in the heat. Filters in an air conditioners are often times full of mold spores, bacteria, and something we all shed on a daily basis, dead skin.Yuck!
This is not a free pass to go crazy, and crank the heat, moderation is a key. Go slowly listen to your body, one breath at a time and everything will be fine. Enjoy!
One thought on “The Hot Yoga Debate”
Thank you for this post, I couldn’t agree more.
Although I would not deliberately heat a room, perhaps only on a cold day, practicing in a windy room or with the AC on is out of question for me. During the years of my practice, I’ve learned to listen to my body and can very easily feel the slightest change in temperature and its influence on the body and my practice.
The heat and the sweat have a cleansing affect on the body, I can feel this very clearly. It is not a coincidence that the Hatha Yoga Pradipika says that the sweat worked through asana and pranayama is a precious nectar.
Unfortunately, even though my teacher generally agrees that yoga should be practiced without AC, he very often turns it on because of a few students (mostly beginners) complaining about the heat and the sweating.
I’ve found myself in an uncomfortable situation in the midst of practice, quite a few times, where I can feel the cold going through my muscles and asked the teacher to change the temperature or close the AC. After such classes, I often have sore muscles, which is not something that happens when I do my home practice. A few days ago I even caught a cold, probably because of the AC.
I’ve tried speaking to the students who like the AC on, and to the teacher, but I guess the pressure from the AC-loving people is too big… perhaps you have some suggestions for me?
Thanks in advance,