Why You Want to Practice Bikram Yoga in Summer (yes you do!)

  1. You’ll take your practice deeper. Keeping up your practice is the key to maintaining all thebabs-on-beach-in-triangler headway you made during the winter. It’d be a shame to lose all that range of motion you worked so hard for! In fact, your muscles, joints and ligaments will already be lovely and warm when you enter the studio, so you will likely find you’re more flexible and can go deeper into the postures during the summer. Take advantage of the summer months to increase your joint flexibility, core strength and spinal mobility and make gains in your emotional and mental practice.
  2. You’ll encourage good habits. Practising in the hot room encourages you to stay well hydrated and to replenish your electrolytes regularly. This can be a great benefit during the hot summer months. Warmer weather often means you have a lighter appetite, which can take your practice to a new level by relieving you of that ‘full’ feeling and letting you go much deeper into the postures to help with digestive health.
  3. You’ll be in better shape for summer recreation. By adjusting to the heat in the yoga room, you’ll be in top-notch shape for any summer sports or outdoors activities you like to do. If you make time for your yoga practice, you may notice that you don’t mind the heat and have more endurance when you’re running, biking, pushing the stroller, playing tennis or playing other sports outdoors. Bikram Yoga will increase your strength, stamina, balance and coordination too
  4. You’ll energize your body and mind. Often the summer months can leave us feeling a bit “fried,” both mentally and physically. We’ve all had days when the heat makes us feel super-sleepy and we can’t be bothered exercising.  Yet we know that yoga energizes the body and mind and provides us with so many health benefits. Committing to a strong summer practice will keep you from that sluggish summer feeling and give you quality time spent focused on your Self.
  5. You’ll manage the silly season better Sydney in summer is party time. There’s more barbeques, parties, drinks after work. from Melbourne Cup through to Australia Day. It’s great fun! Your body will thank you though if you continue to detox and cleanse by maintaining a regular practice. You may take it a little easier in the room, but you are still getting benefits. Putting less pressure on yourself can have surprising results (see reason #7)
  6. You’ll acclimatise to the heat outside. Practicing yoga during the summer months helps acclimatise you to the season’s heat and humidity. Your body learns to cool itself more efficiently and effectively through sweat. If you practice often enough, you may notice that outside weather doesn’t feel as hot as it used to, that you don’t need your air conditioning as much, and that you don’t mind being outside as much when it’s sweltering.
  7. You’ll surprise yourself. That relaxed ‘can’t-be-bothered’ attitude can transform into a relaxed and therefore enhanced practice. We all remember a class where we came in expecting very little and walked out feeling amazing? Same sort of thing applies here.
  8. You will tone up for the summer. Burning 500 – 800 calories per class will get you buff in all the right places.  You will look great and feel more comfortable and confident all summer long!

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Learn How to Love Triangle!

“Triangle is the key posture to bring faith back to the spirit” – Bikram

Of all the postures in the standing series, this one can be the most challenging. It requires determination and focus but the pay off? So many benefits!

Your overall strength and muscle tone will increase tremendously building equal amounts of strength AND flexibility through the hips, pelvis, shoulders and torso. Whichever quality your body needs you will feel in this tremendously powerful posture. Just do the best you can and remember to breathe.

Ultimately in any yoga posture, the more you are willing to work, the easier it will become.

8 important Points to help make Triangle easier

  • Take a big step, 4 feet minimum!

Many people especially when they start, don’t take a wide enough step. Look 20160706_163257how wide apart Brandon’s legs are in the pic on the right.

  • In the set up, stretch your arms apart and lift your chest up

This engages your core. Your upper body support starts from your core – your whole pelvis is included. Think of sucking the whole area up. Not just in. Your pelvic floor will thank you in years to come. 🙂

  • Moving into the posture, when you move your arms, JUST move your arms, don’t let your whole torso collapse to the side. This way you will use your core from the start to support your upper body and your upper body strength will improve. But we’ll not lie to you, it’s going to be hard in the beginning.
  • Have a sneaky peak in the mirror at your arms. They should be in one line, that’s what you are aiming for. Why? Because that means you are really stretching down the side of your torso from the hip right up to your fingertips.
  • Gently push your knee back with the elbow. Keeping the fingers between your big and second toe will start this happening.
  • Can’t touch your toes? Quick check in the mirror to see if you are you sitting down low enough. You’ll get there with perseverance. If you struggle to get down, widen your step. 20150717_101930 (Copy)
  • Look up to the ceiling and TOUCH your chin to your shoulder. Tuck the chin in more to get this connection. Best remedy for stiff necks!

Now you are in the posture, keep your breath flowing and keep stretching UP. The upward stretch will naturally instigate the downward stretch.

  • The straight leg should be lovely and strong and locked out. Triangle builds strong legs. Bikram says you should be able to do this posture on ice! It will build tone and strength especially in the inner thighs. On the way to building this strength, you are going to feel things. Keep breathing and keep smiling.

Benefits of Triangle Posture

  • An excellent cardiovascular workout, with very little movement.
  • Increases stability
  • Tones arms, abdomen and thighs
  • Builds better overall body alignment through strengthening of the legs
  • Intensely stretches the side of the body
  • Lengthens the spine, opens the torso and broadens the shoulders which allows proper function of other physiological systems (cardiovascular, digestive etc.)
  • Reduce saddle bags
  • Good for frozen shoulder
  • Helps regulate hormone levels
  • Helps to build awareness of hunger, helping with eating disorders
  • Helps with: constipations, colitis, low blood pressure, appendicitis, spondylitis, menstrual disorders
  • Helps to balance adrenal glands and the production of the stress hormone, cortisol

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