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Have You Been Working Up A Sweat In Hot Yoga Class? We've Got Some Bad News

By Sarah

January 19, 2018 at 11:24am

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Christ this is disappointing. Apparently all those blood, sweat and tears (Bikram is tough, okay?) that we've put into doing hot yoga classes has kinda been for nothing. 

While we had always assumed that Bikram yoga, a style of yoga practiced in a room heated to around 35-42 degrees Celsius and a set routine of 26 different postures, was WAY more beneficial to our health than regular old yoga it turns out that's wrong. 

A new study published by researchers at the University of Texas looked at whether practising yoga in a heated room was more beneficial to your vascular health and heart than doing the same postures at room temperature. 

The study shows that Bikram yoga can help reduce changes in your circulation that could lead to heart disease - but it has nothing to do with the heat

The study required 80 participants ages 40-60 to attend three 90-minute Bikram yoga classes per week for 12 weeks. 

Split into groups of three, the participants either practised yoga at 40 degrees Celsius, 23 degrees Celsius and one control group. 

Stacy D Hunter, corresponding author of the study, said: “The new finding from this investigation was that the heated practice environment did not seem to play a role in eliciting improvements in vascular health with Bikram yoga.

“This is the first publication to date to show a beneficial effect of the practice in the absence of the heat.”

So while the findings did highlight the efficacy of yoga postures in producing improvements in vascular health, it's basically just the movements and not the heat. 

Ugh. At least all that sweat has to be good for our pores. We hope. 

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