Published On: Thu, Apr 16th, 2020

Difference Between Hot Yoga and Bikram – Are They Same? Bikram Yoga History

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Yoga has been gaining popularity all over the globe recently. There are numerous benefits of performing yoga and its benefits have been supported by scientific as well. The origins of Yoga are from Southeast Asia where people have been practicing yoga as part of their daily lifestyle. There are many types of yoga one can perform and a very popular type of yoga among them is hot yoga. Hot yoga is basically when people perform yoga in a place with high temperatures. There is another type of yoga called Bikram yoga, Bikram yoga is also a type of hot yoga but not all the hot yoga is Bikram yoga.

People often are mistaken and they use these terms interchangeably, but there are certain differences between the two types of yoga mentioned here i.e. Hot Yoga and Bikram. Today we will explain both the types of yoga and the key differences between them. The advantages of hot yoga are numerous and include the various benefits of having a steam bath and performing yoga on a regular basis. Hot yoga is very popular among celebrities as well as major Hollywood people perform this type of yoga on a regular basis. Let’s understand the meaning of Hot Yoga.


It is a type of flowing winds air style of practice where the yoga instructor instructs people to perform a series of poses that are linked with each other. Now obviously as the name suggests the temperature of the room where this type of practice takes place is at 95 to 106 F. The reason for such high temperature is that the high temperature causes the body to sweat a lot and due to that the muscles loosen, which enables the performer to perform yoga more easily and in a more effective way.

People also believe that due to the excessive sweating the body is also detoxicated after performing Hot Yoga but there is no scientific support for this statement. Hot yoga is a very broad term there are various types of hot yoga options available like the core power yoga, moksha yoga, and Bikram yoga.


In order to be prepared for a hot yoga session, you need to keep in mind the following things,

  • There is a lot of sweating involved in performing hot yoga, so you can get a yoga mat that is specifically designed to absorb more sweat and improve traction. Now some of the yoga instructors provide such mats for a very small fee or even for free. So, be informed about this factor.
  • You might also want to choose something to wear that is more open so that the sweat doesn’t lead the clothes to stick to your body.
  • The actual temperatures in the class may differ from one place to another. Some are hotter than the other.
  • Many people believe that sweating also detoxes the body but there is no scientific proof of that, but yeah you may feel better after performing the yoga.
  • Make sure to stay hydrated because of the sweat factor. Drink sufficient amount of water before and after the session so that you are comfortable during the yoga.
  • It is not recommended for pregnant women to perform hot yoga.
  • Performing hot yoga can be beneficial for people of all ages but make sure that you do not have an underlying medical condition that you will get was sent to the high temperature of the areas during the performance of hot yoga.


The name Bikram yoga came from a yoga instructor called Bikram Chaudhary. He developed a series of yoga styles that constituted a total of 26 postures. As part of the system, these 26 postures are performed twice in a single 90-minute class. These classes are also held in a room that is hot in terms of temperature. Some of the hot yoga classes adopt a Bikram yoga system and others may not. It is not necessary that each and every one of the hot yoga classes would adopt the Bikram yoga system that involves the 26 postures in 90 minutes session.


Founder of Bikram Yoga, Bikram Chaudhary was born in Calcutta, India in the year 1946. He has been a yoga instructor since an early age and his wife Rajshri Chaudhary is also a yoga instructor. Chaudhary’s yoga techniques became famous when he introduced them to the Yoga College of India in Beverly Hills, California. His yoga soon came to be known as Bikram yoga and has been very popular among famous celebrities including Hollywood celebrities.

He also became known for some other things as well like sexual assault allegations and lawsuits. Yoga guru also loved to flaunt his expensive jewelry and his fleet of open sports cars.


Soon after becoming famous due to his Vikram process, he copyrighted his methods of performing yoga in the hot room in 2008. He has also been since involved in many legal cases where he claimed that people used his name and poses under different names. He sued a very large number of yoga studios in America for his copyright infringement.

The famous Yoga guru has been involved in many legal cases relating to sexual assault charges. To date, he has been charged against at least 6 civil lawsuits that claim that he sexually assaulted or raped women in the late 20TH century. In early 2016, there was some good news for Bikram as the Los Angeles court ruled the decision in his favor. It was around this time when his wife Rajshri Chaudhari divorced him. Vikram then left the United States and as of May 2017, an official warrant for arrest was issued against him in California.


Within the yoga community, Bikram is a very famous name and the story of his downfall acts as a cautionary tale for many yoga gurus. Today the large number of studios that once ran under his name are being run by independent instructors and his techniques are being used openly and widely.

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