Click the following links to view the answers to these questions:
- Is yoga a religion?
- I have very strong religious beliefs, will practising Moksha Yoga conflict with my beliefs?
- What is Moksha Hot Yoga?
- Why is heat used in Moksha Yoga and what are the benefits?
- How is Moksha hot yoga different from other hot yoga?
- Is Moksha Yoga a cardio workout?
- What if I’m not flexible?
- Will I lose weight?
- When should I avoid doing hot yoga?
- What should I bring/wear?
While yoga has roots that began over 5,000 years ago in India and later in China, the practice of yoga has never been taught to be anything other than an integrated mind, body and spiritual experience. In fact, today, it has been noted that many churches are embracing yoga and are now incorporating the physical poses of yoga with their prayers. As more and more research is done, people are discovering the many benefits of practising yoga from pain relief to the strengthening of the immune system. Now, yoga is being offered in many physical therapy and cancer treatment centres. So in short, yoga is not a religion, but something that everyone should experience at least once.
A John Monastra, who converted to Islam in 1984, says it best…”I don’t think of yoga as a religion,” he says, “I think of it as a technique that helps anybody practise their own religion better.” In fact, you don’t have to be a Hindu or a Buddhist or in any religion for that matter to practise yoga.
While some yoga styles focus very heavily on meditation and chanting, Moksha Yoga focuses on both upper and lower body strengthening, balance and flexibility. This is not to say that there isn’t a meditative quality to the Moksha Yoga series, one can get this by the simple encouragement of learning to be quiet, with focus on breath. But for those who are interested in taking their practice further, various workshops on meditation and other styles and teachings of yoga will be offered at the Moksha Yoga Trinidad studio.
Moksha Yoga is a series of traditional yoga postures practiced in a heated room (~37C). The series is a cardiovascular workout that strengthens, tones, and stretches the muscles while calming the mind and reducing stress. A combination of calm breathing and deep stretching allows for greater oxygen supply throughout the body, which returns the system to its healthiest form. The heat allows for deeper, safer stretching and promotes detoxification of the skin, blood and muscles through sweat. All classes are open to beginners.
Besides the obvious – weight loss/management – the heat encourages body fat to be redistributed and burned as energy during the class. Also, your metabolism speeds up, which further encourages the breakdown of glucose and fatty acids. It is common to lose inches first, especially in those hard to lose areas.
The heat also produces a much easier stretch because warm muscles are more supple, therefore allowing for greater range of movement in joints, ligaments, muscles and other structures in the body.
The Cardiovascular system gets a thorough workout. Oxygen is more able to efficiently make its way into the tissue, muscles, glands and organs, helping to expel waste. In the long term, muscles and connective tissue become more elastic and allow for greater flexibility with less chance of injury. Sweating leads to detoxification through the skin, which is the body’s largest eliminating organ.
Just as when your body raises its temperature to fight infection, the raised temperature in the room will assist in improving T-cell function and the proper functioning of your immune system. Finally, there are the mental benefits – fine-tuning your sense of discipline, self-control, determination and your ability to concentrate.
You also learn how to manage stress by employing techniques to control your reaction to the stressful stimulants that are encountered throughout the day.
Certain poses work pressure points and use the “tourniquet” effect (the application of pressure), to push fresh, oxygenated blood through the body, replenishing cells and flushing toxins.
Hot yoga then becomes a healing yoga…a holistic complement to aiding physical and mental recovery. To find out more on other benefits from practising Moksha Yoga, visit the Benefits page of this website.
5. How is Moksha hot yoga different from other hot yoga?
Moksha Yoga differs in the following ways:
Complete workout. On a physical level Moksha Yoga is a comprehensive workout that focuses on upper and lower body strength, balance and flexibility. Moksha Yoga also focuses on opening the hips where lower back and knee pain often originate. The intensity of the workout can be adjusted for any body type or fitness level.
Accessibility. Anyone can practice Moksha Yoga because our instructors are trained in the modifications to make Moksha practice safe for any fitness level or body type. And through our Karma Yoga Classes, one’s finances need not be a barrier to a regular practice.
Community. In addition to making hot yoga more accessible through our Karma Yoga Classes, we work actively with local charities by providing regular donations and offering free yoga instruction in underserved areas.
Care for the environment. All Moksha studios are built with sustainable and non-toxic supplies, lights and heating systems are low consumption, and all studios are cleaned with environmentally friendly products. We also donate monthly to Zero Footprint, an organization that measures the environmental impact of our studios and directs us on how to best offset our ‘carbon footprint’ through donations to environmental protection groups.
6. Is Moksha Yoga a cardio workout?
7. What if I’m not flexible?
8. Will I lose weight?
Yes you can. With regular practice students find their bodies becoming significantly trimmer and toned. The added bonus is that Moksha Yoga improves the major systems of the body, increasing health and vitality, which is the best way to lose weight in the long term.
9. When should I avoid doing hot yoga?
Hot Yoga is great for most people, however it is contraindicated under the following circumstances.
Pregnancy. Women in their first trimester of pregnancy, unless they have kept up a regular hot yoga practice for at least 6 months, are recommended to stay out of the heated room.
Heart Disease. Those suffering from severe heart disease that limits cardiovascular activity should consult their doctor about being in a heated environment.
10. What should I bring/wear?
Bring a beach-size towel, water and yoga mat (mats are also available for purchase). Clothing that is light and comfortable is best…imagine going for a jog around the Savannah. Since the aim is to sweat during the class, it is advisable to bring a change of top for after class.
If you have any other questions, we’d love to hear from you! Please email your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org