There are many different forms of yoga out there, but many of us aren’t sure which one to choose when we’re looking to change up our routines. You’ve probably at least heard of these two popular yoga classes: Bikram Yoga and Hot Yoga. But what are they exactly, and what differentiates them from one another? How do you know which type of yoga class will be the right fit for you?
The article below explains the six key differences between Hot Yoga and Bikram Yoga so you can gain a thorough understanding of the postures and health benefits associated with each.
What Is Bikram Yoga?
Bikram Yoga is a form of Hatha Yoga that is unique because of the specific postures and breathing exercises that are performed in a heated room.
Bikram Choudhury is the founder of Bikram Yoga. He formulated a set of 26 yoga poses and two pranayamas. This yoga champion founded a Yoga College in Beverly Hills, California, and began to teach his method of yoga, which went on to become one of the most popular styles of yoga practiced in the West. Hollywood began to endorse this form of yoga, and its benefits became the talk of the town.
What Is Hot Yoga?
Hot Yoga is a Vinyasa style of practice that includes a series of linked poses. It is done in a warm room that is set at a particular temperature and humidity. Since it is a vigorous style of yoga, you tend to sweat a lot and also lose weight.
What Is The Difference Between Bikram Yoga And Hot Yoga?
Now that you have a rather broad understanding of what these two forms are all about, let’s get into the finer details and look at the differences between the two.
1. The Studio
At the outset, one of the very first differences you will notice between the two forms of yoga is the studio. While a typical Bikram Yoga studio is mirrored from wall to wall, the Hot Yoga studios do not have mirrors on the wall. The reason behind this is that yoga believes that mirrors are distracting. It is said that they curb your full potential of awareness. This is not only counterproductive to your practice, but it also defies many yoga principles.
2. The Temperature
Bikram Yoga studios are usually called torture chambers. They are heated to a temperature of 40 degrees Celsius, with a humidity level of 40 percent.
Hot Yoga studios are fairly cooler at around 35-38 degrees Celsius. The humidity levels in these classes vary.
3. The Conduct
When you begin to practice these form of yoga, you will also notice the difference between the conduct expected from you. Bikram Yoga expects army-like discipline, where you are not allowed to talk or laugh for the duration of the practice. Hot Yoga is a lot more lenient. You can ask questions, play music, and if the situation demands, have a good laugh too.
4. The Duration
Time is also a big differentiating factor between the two practices. A Bikram Yoga class has a set time of 90 minutes. You have to do the practice in a hot room for this time period without a break.
A Hot Yoga class never goes over 60 minutes. They believe that you sweat, lose toxins, and gain flexibility without getting dehydrated in this time span.
5. The Postures
A Bikram Yoga class is scripted. The teacher is made to say the same things every day as you practice the structured 26 postures in the same routine along with the two breathing exercises.
A Hot Yoga Class has a diverse range of asanas that are practiced in different sequences set by the Yoga teacher, depending on their own style. This, in some sense, allows your body to react differently to every class, and change itself every day.
6. The Schools
Bikram Yoga is a single school of yoga, which is taught in a strict, set pattern. This form of yoga allows no scope for interpretation or change in style. It concentrates more on the body.
Hot Yoga is structured on different styles of yoga. You could adopt Ashtanga, Iyengar, or Vinyasa, or any form that the teacher adopts.