Frequently asked questions

01

Q: What do I need to know for my first class?

A: If possible, please register online before attending your first class. Try to arrive 15 minutes before the start of class. Bring a yoga mat, a large towel, and a large water.  It is possible to buy water and to rent mats and towels at the studio if needed. We have showers and lockers for your convenience. Please remain quiet inside the classroom, especially during and after class. As a new student, just concentrate on doing the best you can, no more is expected of you! It is fine to sit down and take a break any time you feel the need, but it is best to stay in the room for the entire 90 minute class.

02

Q: What should I wear for class? 

A: Wear comfortable, stretchy, tight-fitting clothes that are easy to move in. No shoes or socks. Less is more in Bikram Yoga! It is ideal, but not required, to wear shorts and to have an exposed midriff. It is helpful for teachers to be able to see your form, and for you to see as much of your body in the mirror as possible. I have found that the belly especially is prone to "cheat" and go slack if you can't keep an eye on it!

03

Q: Am I too old/fat/out-of-shape to do Bikram Yoga?

A: No! Bikram Yoga is appropriate for everyone! The "magic" of the yoga postures is that they work for everyone no mater how well (or not so well!) you can do them. Bikram always says, "Never too sick, too old, or too bad to start again from scratch". It is always fine to sit down and take a break during class. We ask only that you remain as still and quiet as possible when other students are doing a posture.

04

Q: What if I am not flexible? 

A: Bikram Yoga is especially good for you if you are NOT flexible! The heat increases your flexibility and helps you stretch more deeply and more comfortably (less painfully!) It also decreases the chance of injury in and outside of class, especially if you are involved in other sports. Athletes benefit immensely from adding Bikram Yoga to their workouts. They find that an increase in flexibility leads to a decrease in injuries and also helps rehabilitate them.

05

Q: How often should I come to class? 

A: It is recommended that you come at least 3 times a week to class. That is the official "tipping point" where you start to receive maximum benefit from your yoga practice. Remember that yoga effects not only the body, but the mind and spirit as well. Yoga is more than the sum of its parts: a regular yoga practice creates both physical and mental health, as well as emotional stability. That is the "yoga magic". It creates a comprehensive well-being. Three classes or more a week ensures that you get the most out of your efforts, but many people benefit from coming only once or twice a week. Coming less than once a week is just getting a good workout now and then.

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Q: Will Bikram Yoga help me lose weight?
 
A: A single Bikram Yoga class burns around 850 calories so, yes, Bikram Yoga will help you lose weight! Keep in mind, however, that as you lose fat you will also be building muscle. As a result, the pounds do not seem to melt off right away: your body composition changes. Bikram's famous quote is, "In my class you do not lose pounds, you lose inches!" That is because muscle weighs more than fat, so you will start to see that results in the way your clothes fit before you see a big difference in your weight on the scale. Keep in mind also that muscle tissue burns calories even at rest, so a more muscular body consumes more calories all day, every day, no mater what you are doing!
Q: What about Cardio? 

A: The heated atmosphere in Bikram Yoga causes an increase in heart rate, blood flow, and oxygen absorption, so it is very cardiovascular. It is common for even very athletic and fit individuals to have to sit down in class to catch their breath now and then!
Q: What if I get dizzy or lightheaded in class?
 
A: Just sit down and take a break. It is normal and common to feel dizzy now and then in class, especially as a new student. Sometimes newer students even feel a little queasy at first. There is nothing wrong when that happens! These are just side effects of the detoxification that is occurring.

10

Q: How does Bikram Yoga help detoxify the body? 

A: First off, it makes you sweat, a lot! The skin is the largest organ in the body, and it is one of the main avenues of toxin/waste elimination that the body uses. Sweating heavily is the quickest and most efficient way to remove large quantities of toxins from the body. Toxins are also removed via the lungs and the breath. Respiratory activity is very high during class due to the physical exertion combined with heat. The digestive system is intentionally stimulated so that it does its job of waste elimination more efficiently as well. In addition to facilitating the removal of toxins, Bikram Yoga creates the ideal environment for increasing oxygen levels in both blood and tissues, so by the end of class the body has released waste and toxins as well as incorporating extra oxygen, which adds up to a much healthier state over all. (this would be a good place to have another link to that article on yoga reversing the cancer process that they have on bikramyogasandiego.com, because it explains this process very well)

11

Q: Do I have to do the whole class (90 minutes)?

A: It is HIGHLY recommended to do the entire class from the first breath through the final savasana because every single posture and exercise is very important to the effect of the whole series. We always do the same postures in the same order because the postures are very specifically organized to give you maximum benefit in the order practiced: in other words, each posture builds on the previous posture. If you were to isolate any posture from the series you would gain much less benefit from it. In addition, it is in the final third of class when the body really starts to increase its blood and tissue oxygen levels. When you leave a Bikram Yoga class your body is MORE oxygenated than when you began, unlike most other forms of exercise which deplete your oxygen levels, and most of that oxygenation happens at the end of class. That said, we understand that sometimes you must leave early to get to work, etc., and that is something that you can work out with your teacher/s before class. Our philosophy is that it's better to get some yoga than none at all!

12

Q: What if I am injured or have to skip postures or modify postures? 

A: Please keep coming to class if you are injured or have to modify your postures temporarily for any reason! Take breaks when needed and stick to the structure of class as much as possible. If you need to modify postures (such as during pregnancy), please set up at the back of class so that you do not throw off the other students.

13

Q: Can I do Bikram Yoga when I am pregnant? 

A: Yes, if you have already been practicing. It is best not to start Bikram Yoga as a new student when you are pregnant. There is a modified series of postures for pregnancy that you can find on the internet. Please practice at the back of the class if you are modifying postures for any reason! It is also advisable when pregnant to practice in the cooler areas of the classroom (by the doors).

14

Q: How old do kids have to be to practice at this studio? 

A: There is no set age requirement, but generally it is best for kids to be 13 or older when starting Bikram Yoga. Children under 18 must have parent's permission.
Q: What if I don't like the heat?

A: The atmosphere in a Bikram Yoga class is totally different from how  you feel on a hot day in your normal life!  For one thing, you are not  in the sun, which makes the heat a lot easier to take!   The  atmosphere in class is carefully controlled and there is always fresh  air flowing through the heating system.  For another thing, in yoga  class, the heat it your friend: it helps you stretch more easily and  less painfully.  In addition, the heat has both cardiovascular and  detoxifying benefits.  Many, many people who insist they hate the  heat end up loving Bikram Yoga!

 

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