Bikram Yoga is a sequence of unchanging postures within a heated room. It is a Yoga system that was synthesized by Bikram Choudhury drawing from the original Hatha yoga techniques then popularized from the early 1970’s. Ideally, Bikram yoga is a rejuvenating exercise designed to strengthen the whole body; right from the head to the toe. Normally, all Bikram Yoga lessons run for ninety minutes and comprise a similar series of twenty six  postures and two  breathing exercises. It is usually done in a room that is heated to an optimum temperature of 105 degrees Fahrenheit (≈ 40.6C) at a 40% humidity level. As an official rule, all Bikram Yoga lessons can only be taught or given by [BCT] or Bikram Certified Teachers all endorsed by Bikram after successful completion of a 9 week intensive training. As an additional requirement all these teachers must in every class recite the Bikram dialogue to the letter.
Born in 1946, in Calcutta, Bikram Choudhury, practiced this art 4 to 6 hours per day from the age of four and emerged a winner in the National India Yoga Championship at the age of 13. It is after a series of other victories that Bikram found the inspiration to start a Yoga college and from which he started lecturing his 26 sequence of Yoga poses . Bikram Yoga has had an incredible influence in celebrity circles and notably practiced by personalities like Kobe Bryant, Daniel Craig, Beyonce Knowles, Juliet Simms and Robbie Williams just to mention a few .
Bikram Yoga Poses and Benefits
Here are some of the poses utilized in Bikram Yoga.
Standing Deep Breathing
This pose is useful in preventing respiratory challenges like shortness of breath, emphysema, and bronchitis
Half Moon Pose
It strengthens core body muscles especially in those of the abdomen. Oblique, trapezious, deltoid and latissimus dorsi muscles can also be flexed and strengthened by this pose. It enhances kidney function and boosts the cure of spleen and liver enlargement. One’s buttocks, hips and waistline can also be trimmed and made firm.
Hands to Feet
It increases flexibility while stretching the spine. It also develops a trimmed and firm lower body thereby solving a range of women health issues
This pose tones and enhances the shape of your legs. It also benefits those with chronically cold feet and relieves arthritis and rheumatism in legs. Those with slipped discs and lower spine problems can also be cured by the awkward pose.
The Eagle Pose is able to open up the fourteen largest joints within the skeletal system. It also boosts sexual vitality.
Standing Head to Knee
This one enhances the flexibility of one’s sciatic nerves. It strengthens the leg and hamstring muscles as well.
Standing Bow Pose
It creates balance and helps the upper thigh and abdominal muscles to be firm. Standing bow pose increases the elasticity and size of one’s rib cage. You also boost your levels of concentration, determination and patience.
As your torso is tilted forward, it sends fast running blood into the heart thereby cleaning the arteries, veins and adding strength to the heart muscles.
Standing Separate Leg Stretching Pose
It massages your internal abdominal organs and both sections of the intestines. It also adds flexibility to the hips, ankles, pelvis and joints more so in the last 5 spinal vertebrae.
This pose corrects crooked spines, alleviates lower back pain and the harsh effects of rheumatism. It also helps the lungs and heart and compels them to work together.
Standing Separate Leg Head to Knee Pose
This one massages while compressing the thyroid gland. The end result is a well regulated immune system and metabolism.
It enhances balance and posture. It also flexes the knees, hip joints and ankles. The tree pose prevents hernias.
It develops mental health, and cures hemorrhoid. Knee and hip joints can also be opened by applying Toe stand.
Dead Body Pose
It boosts optimum blood flow allowing internal cleansing
It compresses while massaging the ascending and descending colon. It also prevents flatulence and strengthens arms
It improves digestion, boosts appetite and subsides the harsh effects of menstrual disorders.
Shares most benefits with the cobra pose but unique helps those with leg varicose veins.
Full Locust Pose
This one is good for slipped discs, scoliosis, kyphosis, spondylosis and boosts strength within the middle spine.
Aids in digestion, fighting constipation and combating diabetes & bronchitis. Improves the kidney, liver, spleen and intestinal function.
Fixed Firm Pose
It enhances circulation down to one’s lower limbs, and assists in healing sciatica, lower back pain, varicose veins and rheumatism.
Half Tortoise Pose
Among other benefits it boosts the flow of blood to the brain thereby enhancing mental clarity and memory. Its good for those with tense shoulders and necks. It counters the irritable bowel syndrome and is believed to actually increase the general life span.
- It relieves backache.
- Counters degenerative spinal issues like cervical spondylosis and kyphoscoliotic deformities.
- It stimulates the nervous system.
It facilitates the supply of fresh blood & oxygen into the nervous system. It also helps those with sleeping disorders, depression and diabetes.
Head to Knee Pose and Stretching Pose
It works very well for the lymphatic and immune systems. It also boosts circulation to the pancreas, liver, thyroid etc.
- It twists the spine all the way increasing circulation to the spinal tissues, veins and nerves.
- It boosts spinal elasticity.
- It calms down one’s nervous system.
Blowing in Firm Pose
It helps one generate prana thereby expelling every bit of Carbon dioxide and replacing it with fresh oxygen. It also helps in digestion and boosts lung elasticity.1