What is yoga?
Bikram – the class, not the man!
It was Bikram Yoga that inspired our founder Sebastien Carincotte to originally open the Hot Yoga Ibiza studios, wanting to share his dedication and knowledge with students from all over the island. While he has gone on to study and teach other types of yoga since then, our daily Bikram classes remain the most popular in the studio to this day.
So what is BIKRAM YOGA exactly? The class is a 90-minute sequence developed by Bikram Choudhury in the 60s and hailing from the famous Ghosh lineage. Classes are practiced in a room heated to 40 degrees Celcius with a 40-percent humidity level and follow the same strict sequence and dialogue each and every time. The postures stretch and strengthen specific muscles, ligaments and joints in preparation for the next move. They are designed to stimulates organs, glands and nerves, moving fresh oxygenated blood to the body and restoring all systems to a healthy working order.
Who is it for? Bikram Yoga is, quite simply, for everyone. However you must be mentally strong – or prepared to work on your mental strength – to endure the challenging class. Anyone looking to increase physical strength, energy levels, all-over health; prevent illness, injury and ageing; reduce stress and increase mental clarity… sign up now, because this is your class! The first few days of Bikram Yoga are notoriously difficult, however your body very quickly adapts to the regimen if you continue to practice, practice, practice…
What to expect in class? It’s hot and it’s steamy, but as long as you remember it’s good for you, you’ll start to get addicted to the room BIkram once dubbed his ‘torture chamber’ (trust us – it’s not that bad!). Sweating profusely is a given and it’s important to try not to get attached to your body’s physical reaction. The more you wipe it away, the more you will sweat so learn to live and practice with it. Students are required to look directly into the mirror to connect with themselves on a physical and mental level alike.
At Hot Yoga Ibiza Bikram Yoga is taught in English and Spanish – as each pose is repeated twice throughout the sequence, it gives us the opportunity to present it in both languages. The Bikram dialogue is very strict – we stick to the same words day in, day out. These are Bikram’s words and the way they are almost ‘barked’ at you is part of the mental endurance part of the practice. Everything is done for a reason.
Class beings with a deep pranayama (breathing exercise) followed by 26 postures that must always be practiced in the same order – no variations allowed. Starting with standing positions, we begin with the Half Moon pose, move onto the Awkward series, followed by balancing poses such as Eagle, Standing Head to Knee, Standing Bow and Balancing Stick. Leg stretches follow, with Tree Pose and Toe Stand finishing this part of the practice before Savasana, Wind Removing Pose and the Sit Up.
The Cobra and Locust series come next, followed by Bow, Fixed Firm, Half Tortoise, Camel and Rabbit. You’ll finish off by stretching it all out with a Head to Knee Stretching pose and a deep Spine Twist, before another pranayama practiced sitting on the knees before lowering into the final, most welcome Savasana.