Hot Yoga Is No Better Than Normal Yoga For Your Heart

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That said, it should be reiterated that the study was concerned primarily with vascular health.

The study found that although the group who practiced in heated rooms saw a reduction in their body-fat percentage, but when it came to heart health and reduced risk of heart disease, they shared almost identical positive results with the group who practiced under normal conditions.

Study leader Dr Stacy D Hunter, an assistant professor at Texas State University, said: "Previous studies have shown that sauna therapy and various forms of heat therapy can improve vascular function".

This doesn't mean that hot yoga isn't good for you, just that the 105-degree temperature likely doesn't do much to enhance the practice.

To see whether both styles of yoga had any effect on the cardiovascular system, the researchers measured the amount of vasodilation (widening) caused by blood flow of a major blood vessel of the upper arm known as the brachial artery, after every yoga session.

Hot yoga no healthier than traditional form, say scientists

In the first investigation of its kind, scientists established that Bikram hot yoga, which has attracted a devoted worldwide following since its inception in the 1970s, did nothing extra to prevent heart disease or stroke.

In the hot Bikram group, 19 participants completed 12 weeks of Bikram yoga classes held three times per week. People involved in the study were aged 40 to 60.

In the normal-temperature Bikram group, 14 participants completed the same classes except that their rooms had a normal temperature of 23°C.

They suggest that the findings are "of clinical significance given the increased propensity toward heat intolerance in aging adults". A new study published Thursday in Exercise Physiology found that high temperatures didn't supercharge yoga's effect on a measure linked with heart health.

However, the study authors note that this change was "relatively small and may not have had significant physiological impact". While the yoga practice has always been a favorite of people seeking to add an extra level of difficulty to their practice, there's new evidence to suggest the addition of heat does nothing to make it more beneficial than other forms of yoga.

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