Hot Yoga FAQs

Beautiful women exercising in fitness club


Think you have to be experienced to do hot yoga? Not at all. That's one of the many cool things about hot yoga: as challenging as it is, it's perfect for beginners. And as the heat eases you in more deeply,  you'll feel results almost immediately.

The benefits of hot yoga are endless (unlike the hot yoga class which is a mere 60 or 90 minutes). Relief from aches and pains, stress and anxiety are just some of what you may experience as hot yoga transforms you from the inside out, from bones to skin.

And when you feel better,  life looks better.

Q: I'm not flexible; is hot yoga right for me?

If you're not flexible, you’re in the BEST position to benefit from hot yoga! The heat of hot yoga will help you to feel pliable.  Do your best in each pose, and you get 100% of the benefits. Your flexibility will start to improve almost immediately.

Q: But I've never even done regular yoga...?

Hot yoga is actually perfect for beginners because the heat will help you move into each pose; in fact, with the help of the heat, you may be better at this than you thought!  And whether it's your first class or your hundredth, you get the benefits of hot yoga just by following the instructions to the best or your ability.

Q: Why is the room hot and humid?

In the high heat, muscles relax; blood vessels dilate and circulation increases. Humidity promotes sweating which cools your body and flushes out toxins. Be prepared to sweat...but don't sweat it. Your Riverflow teachers offer expert guidance in every pose so you can relax and know that you're getting all the benefits.

Q: Is hot yoga cardiovascular exercise? Can I lose weight?

The hot yoga sequence of poses is designed to work your entire body from bones to skin. You'll feel your heart pounding in the cardio-focused poses. And with a consistent hot yoga practice, you can also lose pounds and inches; you can reshape parts of your body and tone up while hot yoga burns calories like crazy. You'll love the way you look after hot yoga but the real bonus is how beautiful it makes you feel.

Q: What else can I expect from hot yoga?

Hot yoga has been reported to reduce stress, increase circulation, clean and flush the organs and of course, improve physical strength and flexibility. Regular practice (at least three times a week) has been reported to reduce the symptoms of arthritis, diabetes, thyroid disorders and more.  Hot yoga also promotes deeper focus, total relaxation and increased...happiness overall.

Q: What should I wear to hot yoga?

Women should wear spandex shorts or leggings, leotard, sports bra or top. Men should wear shorts or bathing trunks.  The less you wear the better; wet clothing can feel like a wet towel around you and even weigh you down in hot yoga.

Q: What should I bring to a hot yoga class?

Bring a large, cold water, preferably two: one to drink before class, one to sip during class. Being well hydrated is important, and only water is allowed in the hot yoga room. Bring a yoga mat if you have one, and a large towel to cover your mat. We rent all of these accessories at Riverflow Yoga

Q; What time should I arrive?

Arrive at least 15 minutes early to check in and lie down in the hot yoga room before class starts. We lock the door when hot yoga begins so arriving late could leave you out in the cold…but you can always call ahead if you’re running 5 minutes late and we will leave the door open for you.

Q: What's the right way to breathe in hot yoga?

Breathing in and out through the nose - slow extended inhalations and exhalations - helps calm the nervous system. I call this Darth-Vader breathing and it releases neurosensors from the brain, signals to open, dilate, and relax. Open-mouth breathing is the Panic Breath; a no-no in hot yoga.

Q: What if I feel nauseous?

Hot yoga can be detoxing and that isn't always pretty: headaches, nausea, mood swings. It's temporary.

Sometimes nausea can be avoided by eating lightly before class (no sooner than an hour), no heavy meals during the day at all,  and staying hydrated extremely well throughout the day.

So just how do you get through your nausea in hot yoga class?Take a pose off. Lie down on your back, on your mat. Sip water. Your body has an amazing capacity to recover if you lie back and let it go.

Q: Should I start with "Regular Yoga" and work up to Hot Yoga?

Actually, hot 26 yoga is called "The Beginners Series" - precisely because the heat and humidity assist your body in stretching and flexing. Yoga in a cold room is harder on your muscles and joints. The heat and the method of hot yoga are precisely designed to help beginners.

Q: I felt very emotional in hot yoga class. What should I do?

Those feelings are often the signs that your body is releasing, everything from toxins to trauma.  Feeling a bit weepy, angry, sad? Feel it and keep going.  The benefit is in the release.

Q: Should I avoid crowded hot yoga classes?

The high energy of a crowded class is a lovely hot yoga experience; but at Riverflow Yoga it makes no difference if you find yourself in a crowd or just among a few: our teachers are trained to watch over you personally. Focus on yourself in the mirror and let your teachers guide you into your best hot yoga experience in every class.

Q: How often should I do hot yoga?

The transformation you're looking for - weight loss, increased flexibility, easing of joint pain, less stress - happens fastest when you do THREE hot yoga classes each week. This is called the foundational practice for hot yoga. Ask us what happens when you boost that to FOUR classes weekly...

Q: Why three hot yoga classes weekly?

Three seems to be a magic number across many cultures:  Holy Trinity, three-sided pyramids - good and powerful things are said to come in threes.  The same can be seen in hot yoga practice: three times weekly activates the powerful kick cumulative effects of hot yoga and increases your benefits

Q: I've heard about the Hot Yoga Cumulative Effect...what is that?

When you consistently practice hot yoga, the benefits accumulate. Rather than starting all over in each class, your body acclimates and starts from a deeper place, closer to your goals, in every class - once you create a three-times-weekly practice. It has been noted that your entire body will transform within 6 months of three classes weekly - or 30 days of consecutive classes. With the cumulative effect you are creating a deep reservoir of health, flexibility, and energy.

Q: What is a 30 Day Hot Yoga Transformation?

Commit to hot yoga for 30 consecutive classes and you'll create a whole new body, mind and spirit in just 30 days. The results others have reported:  everything from weight lost, to emotional trauma healed, to new realizations about life. Are you up for a transformation?

Q: Besides shaping my body, can hot yoga calm me?

You can see how hot yoga benefits your body; what you may realize only more gradually is how hot yoga changes your mind and your spirit.  People will begin to notice something different about you. Friends and family will comment about how vibrant you look, and how good they feel being around you. You'll notice that your ability to create calm, to focus, overcome obstacles and succeed at your goals - all this and more will stay with you outside the hot yoga room and into your life.

When people start asking, "What's different about you?" just tell them, "I got hot," ....and bring them with you to Riverflow Yoga so they can, too