Bikram yoga or hot yoga offers the same benefits to improving heart health as yoga practised at room temperature, a new study has found.
Texas study lead Stacy Hunter and her team tracked 80 healthy adults across a three-month period after noting prior studies had shown “sauna therapy and various forms of heat can improve vascular function”, AAP reports.
"We decided to do a follow-up study to attempt to isolate the effects of heat and find out whether the heated practice environment was doing anything," she explained.
Participants were divided into three groups, the first practised yoga at 40C, the second group practicing yoga at room temperature (23C), and the third group who did not exercise at all.
Those in the yoga classes participated in three 90-minute classes each week, with researchers measuring the widening of blood vessels (vasodilation) in an upper arm brachial artery after each session.
Dr Hunter said researchers found similar levels of improvement across both heated and non-heated yoga.