Archive for the tag - hot yoga

Is Hot Yoga Safe?

09-015779311It’s getting hot in herre!

And that’s exactly the case for hot yoga aficionados. For a hot-style yoga class, yogis endure temperatures of 90 – 105 degrees Fahrenheit and humidity levels above 40%. By the end of the session, participants are literally dripping in sweat – and it’s made many people wonder about safety. Does hot yoga result in dehydration, heat exhaustion or even heat stroke?

The American Council on Exercise (ACE) enlisted the help of the Department of Exercise and Sport Science at the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse to get some answers.

For the June 2013 study, researchers recruited 20 healthy participants ages 19 – 44. After establishing baseline fitness levels, each participant swallowed a core body temperature sensor and then experienced a 60-minute yoga class at 70 degrees. Throughout the class, temperature readings, heart rate and perceived exertion levels were recorded.

Within 24 hours, participants then experienced a hot-style yoga class at 92 degrees and with more humidity. The same poses and same yoga instructor were used – and temperature, heart rate and exertion levels were again recorded.

Though the participants sweated much more during hot yoga, body temperature and heart rate levels remained the same. Though the participants’ vital signs were nearly the same, the hot yoga class was perceived to be more challenging. According to fitness guidelines, the intensity would still be categorized as light exercise.

The bottom line: Hot-style yoga is not dangerous. For heat-related complications to be imminent, internal body temperatures must exceed 104 degrees – and no participants came close to that threshold. However, participants must be mindful to stay hydrated before, during and after the class.

Have you ever tried hot yoga? Do you love it? Share your thoughts in the comments below!