A Beginner's Guide on How To Prepare For Hot Yoga

Hot yoga is a little bit more intense type of workout compared to a regular yoga class. For one, the yoga studio is heated up to 105 degrees Fahrenheit. Just imagine working out in a room with a high temperature. If you are joining a hot yoga class for the first time, it’s important to be prepared. Things like “what should I wear” and “what should I bring” has to be taken into consideration.

If you don’t know how to start, we’ll help you! Read on and find out the tips on how you can prepare for your first hot yoga class.

Understanding Hot Yoga

First things first—know what you are getting into. If this is your first time getting into a hot yoga class or even just yoga in general, you need to familiarize yourself with the workout. Know about its purpose and benefits so you can ensure if it fits your body’s needs. You can try consulting a yoga instructor or a medical professional to give you sound advice if this type of yoga is suitable for you. You can also talk to someone who has experienced going to a hot yoga class before. This way, you’ll know about the possible effects and what else to expect.

Drink lots of water

Keeping yourself hydrated is one of the most important things to do. As mentioned above, the hot yoga class involves working out in a heated room or studio. Expect that you will be sweating a lot. Also, exposure to heat for that long can make us more tired especially when we’re executive different yoga poses. It is important to drink some water before you join a class so that the hot exercise can be much more bearable. Also, bring a water bottle or tumbler with you so you can still drink water throughout the yoga class. Water actually helps us regulate our body temperature and it also lubricates the joints. Stay hydrated and you will be doing just fine! Just don’t drink too much, you might end up excusing yourself to the restroom more than you should.

Eat what is right

Food is another basic necessity besides water. Make sure to plan your meals. Determine which type of food is right for you to take before and after the hot yoga class. It is recommended to eat lightly two hours before the class. You can try eating fruits, a granola bar, or a whole wheat bread with a little bit of peanut butter to provide you with the necessary energy and nutrition that your body needs. After the hot yoga practice, feed yourself with a small meal that’s full of protein to get back the energy that you lost during the session.

Wear the appropriate outfit

Yoga involves a lot of precise movements and poses. You’re going to be moving around so it’s important to consider what you’re wearing. In this case, you would want to avoid wearing a big or loose top. You will be bending and doing poses like planks so wearing tight-fitted clothing is more fitting. Furthermore, loose clothes will end up getting heavy once your body starts to feel the heat and begin sweating. For women, they can wear tank tops, sports bra, and tight shorts. On the other hand, men can wear comfortable shorts.

Also, there is no need to wear make-up and perfume or cologne.

Bring your props and equipment

You should bring your own stuff to a hot yoga class. Things such as a yoga mat and a towel are important things to bring and you can actually rent some from the yoga studio. However, for hygiene purposes, it is much better to bring your own. Also, bring your own water bottle to keep yourself hydrated (as mentioned above). Try to bring two towels, one for wiping during the actual yoga practice while the other one to wipe yourself with after the class. Try to reduce the wiping though because our sweat actually helps our bodies cool down. If you keep wiping your sweat off with a towel, your body will have a hard time regulating its body temperature. Plus, it’s distracting!

Arrive early

Punctuality is an attitude that must be kept at all times, even at yoga classes. Do your best to get to the yoga studio early so you can already fill out the necessary paperwork at the receptionist’s desk. This will also give you time to warm up, relax, and even have a small chat with the yoga instructor so he or she can give you some helpful points related to the yoga class. Arriving early also enables you to choose a spot that you like in the studio.

Practice a good attitude

You should keep in mind that having proper etiquette is important, even in a hot or Bikram yoga class. If this is the first class that you’ve attended, make sure to introduce yourself to the instructor and your fellow yoga students. It would be best to begin the class by establishing a good impression on the people you’ll be working out with. It is good to show some politeness and friendliness. Also, try to avoid doing things that can interrupt the yoga class such as making too much noise and blocking other people’s views. Even though you’ll be spending minutes focused on your inner peace, try not to forget being sensitive towards your surroundings.

What should I expect from my first hot yoga class?

Do you know what’s going to happen during the hot yoga class?

You’ll adjust to the heat

You might think that a hot yoga practice is going to be really intense and uncomfortable due to the heat. But don’t worry, your body will eventually adapt to the high temperature. You will be so focused on doing the yoga poses and breathing techniques that you would rarely pay attention to the heat and sweat anymore.

You need to breathe

When it comes to yoga practice, breathing plays a major role. Make sure to breathe properly now and then. Inhale and exhale deeply and then you will be noticing some changes in the way you breathe. Once you start experiencing shallow breaths, that basically means you have to slow down a little. Also, every yoga pose requires proper breathing techniques.

Don’t compare yourself to others

You might feel a little pressure if you see other students doing so well with their poses. Do not overthink it! If this is your first time, give yourself a little time to progress. Not everyone can get it perfectly on the first try. A lot of other yoga students practiced yoga for a long time before they managed to do the complicated positions. Keep an open, positive mind and congratulate yourself for every small progress you make. That will help you do better next time!

There will be bad days

Expect that there will be times when you don’t feel your best. It’s either you feel tired physically, mentally, or emotionally. That’s okay! You shouldn’t force yourself to feel well all the time. If you are having a bad day, just stay at home and rest or do an activity that will help you feel much better. Taking a break from time to time will help you get back into the game better and sooner.

You will feel great

Hot yoga is an intense workout and yes, you will be sweating a lot throughout the day. But the good thing is at the end of the class you will be feeling amazing. The great thing about hot yoga and Bikram yoga is that your whole self—not just the body but also the mind and the soul—are changed for the better. Your muscles, joints, and back are stronger than ever, and your mind has been exposed more to the importance of taking care of your health. When you practice yoga regularly, you get to be a better version of yourself!

Is hot yoga okay for beginners?

If you are a beginner, you can still take a hot yoga class. Sure, you will have to adjust to the heat but after taking two to three classes, you will eventually adapt to it. By that time you will have also learned to do the different yoga postures better.

Join hot yoga classes now!

Many people have been doing yoga these days and it’s becoming popular for a reason. If you want to improve your lifestyle and your health, the best thing to do is to practice yoga. If you are staying in Singapore, then it’s best to try to experience hot yoga in Singapore, and try strengthening your body and your mind. You will also form new-found friendships along the way. Minutes of hot yoga will certainly bring you a lot of benefits. Now you know what to expect and how to prepare for your first class, you can go all the way!

About the Author​

Lynette is fully dedicated to the support and empowerment of the growing community of committed yoga students and teachers. As one of the Lead Instructors for Yoga Teacher Training, she is here to share tips on how to grow your profile as a yoga teacher or build a yoga business either physically or digitally.