Yoga can be a relaxing stretching exercise for many people. However, hot yoga is growing in popularity. With hot yoga, you perform deep yoga stretches in a humid room. There are many benefits to this type of yoga, but there are also a few drawbacks. If you are interested in taking a class, check out these six pros and cons of hot yoga.

Pro: It Is Great for Joint Pain

Yoga in general is good for joint pain, especially arthritis. One huge reason it helps with arthritis is that it strengthens other muscles, which can carry some of that burden off the joint, reducing inflammation. However, hot yoga may further benefit some arthritis sufferers. This is because heat is great for arthritis sufferers because it relaxes muscles and boosts blood flow to the joint, which can help with natural healing of your body.  

Pro: It Improves Flexibility

If you want to improve your flexibility, yoga is good, but hot yoga is better. This is because during hot yoga, your muscles are warm, which makes it easier to stretch them deeper. If you stretch cold muscles, you can cause damage, such as tearing the muscle. Before a regular yoga class, you may need to warm up with some light walking or jogging, but with hot yoga, your muscles don't need to warm up because the humidity and heat already increases blood flow.

Pro: It Flushes Toxins

During regular yoga classes, you probably won't sweat, but during hot yoga you do, making it great for flushing toxins. Sweating actually detoxes your body from things like alcohol, salt and even cholesterol. This benefits your overall health, but sweating helps your skin too. With your pours open, the sweat helps wash away the buildup inside your pours that lead to enlarged pours, blackheads and pimples. There has also been some evidence regarding sweat helping to kill bacteria like E. coli and staph.

Con: You Sweat

Sweating is good for your skin, but not everyone enjoys sweating during their yoga. This is especially the case if you squeeze your yoga session in during your lunch or while running other errands. With hot yoga, you'll either need to shower or go back to work sweaty. Another problem with sweating is that you may become dehydrated, especially if you are used to regular yoga. Before your class, drink plenty of water, and bring some water with you in case you become thirsty. Just don't drink so much water you can't perform the poses.

Con: You May Feel Nauseated

Hot yoga can also leave some people feeling nauseated. One reason is because it causes dehydration. This is why it is important to drink plenty of water before and after, which will help ease some nausea. The heat, however, is another reason some people get nauseated. It may start before you begin, and it may worsen with some poses. For this reason, focusing on your breathing is incredibly important in hot yoga. Being hot and feeling sick can make your breathing shallow, which worsens your nausea. So think about your breathing and your poses.

Con: Classes Are Long

The last disadvantage to hot yoga is it takes a long time. The classes tend to last longer than normal yoga classes, so it may be difficult to squeeze them in when you normally do yoga. Also, because you sweat and need to take a shower, you'll need even more time before continuing with your day, making them a poor choice if you want something during your lunch break.

Hot yoga is becoming more and more popular because of the many benefits. However, it isn't right for everyone, and you can hurt yourself if you don't drink enough water or stretch too far. If you would like more information, contact a gym that offers hot yoga in your area today.