22 Nov Do You Wana Get High?
For anyone whose been to our practice you will agree Hot Yoga leaves you feeling cleansed and purified, not to mention higher than a cloud.
The feelings produced mean its very easy for passion to cross the line into addiction. A good addiction I may add. So how does this addiction begin? Is it all in the mind or is there a scientific reasoning behind these feelings? Yes there is! Without going into too much detail heres a brief on the journey your body goes through each time you partake in a class.
Firstly class begins with focus on breathing technique to help clear the mind, remove the days stress and begin to soar the oxygen intake. As your body begins to adapt to the intensity of the heat your natural cooling systems go into overdrive, our heart and respiratory rates soar and we release sweat in a process called evaporative cooling. Our body, perceiving itself under threat (the heat) moves into the ‘fight and flight’ response as our sympathetic nervous system turns on. This lifts the heart rate (calorie burning effect) and channels the mind to improve clarity.
Next we begin to release endorphins which ‘numb’ the sensations of physical exertion so we can “fight” for our lives or in this case – flee for cooler climes. This endorphin buzz is the natural “high” that lifts your spirits & motivation. The asanas and movements you make during practice stimulate blood flow the bodies natural detoxification mechanism. As practice nears it’s conclusion you will be encouraged to breathe deep and
Some question subjecting my body to such conditions is not very yogic. It not only runs afoul of the yogic principle of ahimsa (non -harming) it also defies Yogi Sage Patanjali’s instructions that asana be a “posture that brings steadiness and comfort”. While practicing asana in a heated room is not part of the yogic tradition the practice of internally producing heat certainly is. The Yoga Sutras see “purification” as stoking the internal fire to burn away the “Maya” or illusion of the external world.
Yoga is also a great teacher. It’s one of the defining ways in which we can better understand our body & mind. As such you will learn far more about your body and mind when it’s placed in a more challenging environment. There are two beautiful Yogi quote that say:
“yoga teaches us to cure what need not be endured and endure what cannot be cured”
“Without challenge & change nothing would grow or blossom”
I believe that is one of the foundations of yoga. Yes it’s to yoke mind, body and spirit and yes it’s to promote calmness & healing but surely it’s also to help better ourselves and grow to become the best we can be. The intensity of the practice can teach us that when faced with “stress” such as I’m this can the heat, we can endure and we can change. The final “high” we experience cones from a more spiritual place. As we overcome the challenge set by the class we are lifted by a sense of achievement and empowered by a feeling of accomplishment.
I haven’t even begun to touch on how the light therapy and music we use at YogaLife can enhance the vibrations of strength, calmness, ecstasy, community and power you feel during and after practice! We are still on a learning curve but I assure you we are building something very special and I hope you continue with us along the way.