Bikram Yoga Health Fears
health expert has branded the popular Bikram yoga "cult-like"
and has warned it carries serious health risks. "I think there
is a significant danger of exercising in such heat," said Dr
Anita Green, the director of the peak health body Sports Medicine
Bikram Yoga is the latest, and trendiest, yoga to hit Sydney and involves
90-minute classes being conducted in a room heated to 37 degrees.
Bikram Yoga teachers claim benefits include increased blood circulation,
better cardiovascular conditioning, detoxification through sweating,
improved muscle and tissue elasticity and reduced risk of injury.
But those who believe that are wasting their time and money, Dr Green
said. "All this talk about detoxing is quite cultish," she
said. "I have to say I have not seen good scientific evidence
of what toxins are. "Toxins is one of those buzz words and I
have never seen anyone adequately define what toxins are."
If you looked to Bikram yoga for cardiovascular fitness you would
be better doing an aerobic exercise like jogging or swimming, she
said. "I think it is often difficult when practitioners put themselves
up to be experts," she said. "It makes it very difficult
for the public to question their claims." But Darren Ma has taught
Bikram yoga for five years at the Bikram Yoga College of India at
Darlinghurst and Rozelle and said he swears by its health benefits.
"I do 18 classes a week and I am in fine health. I don't remember
the last time I had a cold," he said. Mr Ma said he had been
taught about the medical benefits of Bikram yoga from doctors and
scientists. "I don't really question it, and the working of it
all. "That would be like revisiting the invention of the wheel,
it has been going on forever."
Bikram Yoga Health Fears - By Angela Cuming January 9, 2005 The Sun-Herald