Until setting out on this blogging adventure I had never done hot yoga. I had avoided it simply because the idea of anything in a hot room did not sound like fun to me. But part of me felt that I should try it in order to give a more educated response to anyone who asks me about my thoughts on hot yoga. I'm glad I did. I started with Moksha Yoga Victoria.
I’ll admit, I was a little apprehensive; a bit nervous and a very self-conscious. But when I took a look at the classes offered I was a bit shocked. There was quite the variety; Moksha in 60, 75 and 90 minute classes, Moksha Flow, Moksha Music, Yin, Yin Yang, Hot Flow, Hot Moksha Flow and my favourite - Boarders (I love surfing and snowboarding). So where do you start?
Well, I am a big fan of yin yoga, so that’s where I started - something familiar. I also figured that since Yin is predominantly seated postures this could be a good way of testing the waters of yoga in a warmer room. While Yin is taught in a warm not hot class the temperature is still higher than traditional yoga studios. The temperature reminded me of doing yoga on the beach on a warm summer day.
Still a bit nervous I mustered up my courage and tried a 60 minute Moksha class. I gave myself permission to take Child’s pose or Savasana at any point necessary. Part of my nervousness was due to not knowing what the 40 postures practiced in Moksha. It didn’t really seem to matter. The instructor, Heather, gave easy to follow instructions on how to get in and out of postures and walked around helping people get the most of the posture. Most of the postures are similar to postures taught in Hatha yoga, the oldest form of yoga.
Apart for the need to wipe sweat off my face and being grateful I had a towel, the heat did not increase the difficulty of the class. I struggled with the same aspects of postures I usually do (I have weak arms that tire easily and a not so strong core).
I also began to understand the addiction people have to hot yoga. I had the same exhilaration and endorphin high that I got from running. My lungs felt clearer; my spirit uplifted and an overall sense of accomplishment of doing good for my body swept over me. Not to mention the benefit of sweating assists the body in ridding itself from toxins.
For those new to Moksha yoga I highly recommend starting with the 60 minute Moksha class and work up to the 90 minute. Once comfortable with the 90 minute Moksha classes test the waters of the hot Moksha Flow or other classes offered.
What to Wear
I will admit that part of my aversion to hot yoga was the clothing; or lack of clothing to be more accurate. I normally practice yoga in a tank top and yoga tights or pants. Wearing nothing but short shorts and a sports bra was not appealing to me but I did it anyway. However other people did not. I was shocked that some women wore capris and tank tops. In my first three classes I tried a variety of clothing options Teeki leggings, Karma bras, and shorts. What I discovered was the less clothing that could stick to my sweaty body the better.
Some of my favourite options are:
For more suggestions on what to wear check out the Hot Yoga
section of the online catalog