It’s a no-brainer that yoga is good for guys, especially men who have been hitting the weights too hard. But is traditional yoga enough, or should you turn up the intensity and try a Bikram class, where you move through 26 pre-set positions inside a 104-degree room for 90 minutes? Let’s look at the pros and cons.
- It prevents injury. Bikram works every muscle, tendon, ligament and joint, so it can help you avoid injury during training season. "Sweaty yoga can be especially great for men because they’re generally tighter,” says Kate Abate, a yoga instructor at Momentum by Iron in Santa Monica, CA. “Heat tends to open up the joints so you have access to more muscle fibers than you would with regular yoga.”
- The routine stays the same. If you take a Bikram class in Los Angeles, it will be exactly the same as Bikram in Chicago or New York, which makes it a great workout for a guy who is traveling a lot but wants to stay on track.
- You'll probably lose weight. Bikram can burn up to 600 calories per class. Plus, the extra heat revs up your metabolism.
- Sex is better. The practice’s founder is quoted as saying, “Bikram yoga is good for marathon sex!”
- It's messy. Bikram is not a lunchtime workout. You will sweat. A lot. Go either before your morning shower or after work.
- You've gotta have the time. Fitting in 90-minute classes is hard for tight schedules.
- You’re prone to dehydration and heat stroke. If you easily get dehydrated or have a condition triggered by heat, check with your doctor before starting a Bikram class.
- Sporting spandex, shorts, and short sleeves is essential. If you’re not a show-er, get over it. Baggy clothes are a deal breaker when you’re sweating buckets.
- Bikram can get old, fast. Once you’re a regular, you'll move through the same 26 asanas class after class. Though there are things you can do to change the intensity, if you’re the kind of guy who needs to constantly change things up, a Bikram routine may not be for you.