Hot yoga, also known as Bikram Yoga, is known widely for its exclusive benefits to the human beings. This type of yoga is done in a heated room. In the heat your muscles become “more limber” and they are quite easier to manipulate as you keep moving through your yoga practice. This in turn makes you more flexible. Though hot yoga has got its benefits to many, there are some dangerous side effects of hot yoga which many others can experience while doing it. In the current article we will know about some of the dangerous side effects of hot yoga.
Dangerous Side Effects Of Hot Yoga:
Whether bikram yoga or the hot yoga is dangerous, remains a contentious question. There are some alarming incidents which have been reported during as well as after the hot yoga classes, which includes the case during 2016 of a 35 year old lady who started experience a sudden cardiac arrest during the hot yoga session.(1) Another study of the year 2015 reported that an individual’s core temperatures during the hot yoga classes could increase above 104 degrees. However, according to some others it is explained that the research was flawed.
Another study of 2014 showed that the core temperature of a person can rise to a maximum of 101.6 degrees and on an average it rises to 100.3 degrees. The danger zone generally begins at 102 degrees.(2)
Below, let us take a look on some of the dangerous side effects of hot yoga.
Hot Yoga Causes Heat Exhaustion And Heat Stroke:
One of the most dangerous side effects of hot yoga is it causes heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Working in a hot room can lead to heat exhaustion, especially if the heat gets difficult to bear. Working in a heated room can throw off the internal temperature of the body, which can lead to dehydration and in very extreme case it can cause heat exhaustion or even heat stroke.
While exercising, our body’s internal temperature goes up naturally and our blood vessels open up and allow more of the blood to travel to the skin so that we can sweat, and this in turn cools down the internal body temperature. However, while exercising in a heated room, our bodies have a tougher time cooling down. The normal body’s processes are not going to be enough for overcoming this external heat. And, when the heat gets extremely high, heat exhaustion occur. This condition happens when one’s body is not temperature regulating anymore and the person become dehydrated.
When one suffers from heat exhaustion, symptoms like dizziness, weakness, and nausea can be experienced. In such cases, you need to immediately come out of the hot room and stop practicing the yoga. In rare case, you can even develop heat stroke and you need emergency treatment.
Your Blood Pressure Can Drop Really Low:
There is another dangerous side effect of hot yoga. Your blood pressure can drop too low. Because the blood vessels have dilated while doing the yoga or exercise, your blood pressure drops as well. And if this happens, the heart rate goes up as the body tries to pump blood to all your organs so as to overcome the drop in your blood pressure.
You May Become Prone To Overstretching:
It is very true that you improve your body’s flexibility by doing hot yoga. However, improving flexibility of the body can make yoga practicing more challenging. Yoga is really hard for those who are super flexible, and this is because they need to pull back as opposed to the individuals that are more stable.
Hot yoga can make you flexible but it also makes you prone to overstretching. This is because the heat in the hot room loosens your muscles and you can be in danger of over-extending your body. In severe cases, you can also strain a muscle. It is not just the muscles, but our tendons as well as ligaments can also get hurt.
Hot Yoga Can Cause Dehydration:
Another dangerous side effect of hot yoga is that it causes dehydration. Hot yoga results in heavy sweating which in turn leads to dehydration, lower blood pressure, and an increase heart rate. You might start feeling weak, nauseated, and dizzy after doing hot yoga.
So, from all the above description we are now aware of some of the dangerous side effects of hot yoga. If you are one amongst those who is willing to begin any such kind of yoga practice, make sure that you talk to your doctor and also reach out an expert yoga guide and know the best ways to perform hot yoga and also deal with its side effects.
Warning: Those who have pre-existing conditions, like back pain, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and asthma, must always consult their doctor before practicing the hot yoga. Apart from this, if you are in your pregnancy, make sure that you are very cautious about your stage and know it from your doctor if you can do this kind of yoga, as an increased core temperature in case of pregnant women could be really dangerous for the fetus.