So I started hot yoga not too long ago as part of my New Year goals and I’m happy to say I am still going strong (fist pump) and I thought I’d share some of my feedback and tips for anyone who may be interested in giving it a go.
Firstly let me say that I knew what I was in for. I expected some poses to be harder than others and that I would probably ache a bit the next day. All of this was true, however I didn’t expect to feel so energised afterwards.
Here’s what I noticed in my first class:
– Everyone is at a different level so you don’t need to feel embarrassed or disappointed about not being able to touch your toes or standing on one leg with the other perfectly straight in front of you – hey I can’t do either, but hopefully eventually I will be able to increase my flexibility.
– Focus on yourself. Something that I find helps me is to keep eye contact with yourself in the mirror. As a newbie I looked at how other experienced yogis where doing the poses so I knew what the instructor was talking about, but other then that I focused on me and kept within a comfort zone my body could handle. There’s no point trying to push yourself to extremes and ache horribly the next day, or worse injury yourself.
– You will sweat. Don’t worry about it everyone does, just remember to bring towel for your mat and maybe a face towel to wipe your hands and face throughout class.
– The golden rule is bring water! You need to stay hydrated and I don’t just mean during class. Make sure you drink water throughout the day before class, take sips during class if you need to and most importantly re-hydrate yourself afterwards. It sounds obvious but when you do hot yoga you sweat which means you need to replace that moisture your body has lost. So bring a bottle and make sure it is full up!
What to wear
I tend to wear 3/4 or full length leggings, a sports bra and over the top I would wear a loose-ish vest top (but nothing too baggy). You can wear shorts and t-shirts but just be aware that you want something comfortable and something that absorbs sweat.
Noticing a difference
After my first few classes I can definitely say I have not noticed a big physical difference (not that I expected to be toned in just a week) but I do feel a difference.
In addition to feeling energised my muscles feel like they have worked out in a variety of ways and overall my body feels better. Probably the biggest win for me is that I usually hold a lot of tension in my upper back, shoulders and neck which I’ve noticed has greatly relaxed.
It’s hard to explain, but in short I generally feel better and that’s always a good thing.
I would love to know if any of you have started yoga for the first time this year or are regular yogis and have any advice for us newbies. If so leave a comment below!