On the weekends, please enjoy the Retro Throwback where I share my favorite posts from some time ago. Is There Anything Bikram Yoga Can’t Do? was originally published in April 2013.
Is there anything Bikram yoga can’t do? It’s a question I have, and I actually have an answer. My answer is, it seems like it can pretty much do anything you want and give you most of what you need. I was reminded of this recently when I got the hiccups.
Hiccups are so annoying.
Mine came on about an hour before class. I was at home and resorted to my handy-dandy carbonation method. The carbonation method is simple. Get something to drink that is carbonated. Take a deep breath. Pinch your nose shut, and start drinking. Keep drinking until you cannot hold your breath any longer. Release your nose and start to take in oxygen while you continue drinking.
I learned this method about 15 years ago when I had the hiccups for three hours. It was awful. I was on a boat most of that time. When I made it home I went online in search of a cure for the hiccups. I found the carbonation method, tried it, and it worked instantly. Ever since then the method has usually worked the first time and always if I did it a second time.
So I did my method before I left for class. It worked. I went to class.
Class started and I got the hiccups again. What am I going to do? I didn’t know what to do so I just did my pranayama. Bingo. Hiccups gone. So does pranayama deep breathing get rid of the hiccups? I think it might. I’ve had the opportunity to try it out two more times outside the hot room. Both times I got the hiccups I stopped, did five reps, and they were gone. Pretty simple and a lot more comfortable than the first method I described!
But, is there anything Bikram yoga cannot do? Well, it doesn’t seem to do much for my eczema. If you’re wondering why I haven’t mentioned my eczema before (don’t worry. i’m not including any pictures) it’s because I haven’t had a flare up – at least a major one – since I have been writing this blog. Heat makes it worse, and it really makes it look worse. A spot that looks non-existent can look downright painful (even if it’s not) after 10 minutes in the hot room. These spots light up like firecrackers in the hot room. But to be fair, hot showers make it worse and even simply moving around and getting my circulation going will make them look worse than when I first get out of bed.
If I could stay out of the hot room for about two weeks I think I could get this mess all healed up. But I’m not willing to do that. The good news is that it’s not itching anymore. I just need the skin to heal. The other annoying news is I have to keep my skin super hydrated which does not work well for hot yoga. I have to keep lotion on my spots so they will heal. This is really own bad during standing bow. I’ve solved the problem by bringing in a hand towel and gently patting the area around my ankles that has the hot spots. Otherwise I am a slimy mess and cannot grip my ankle.
So even though it’s taking me longer to heal, I’m not staying out of the hot room. Someone recently came to class not feeling well and asked if she should attend. The instructor said it sounded like she was fine to attend so long as she monitored herself and sat down when needed. At the end of class – well, really, halfway thought – she said she was feeling so much better! I don’t know if this practice is helping my skin at all, and I can accept if it’s not, but I’m not willing to lose benefits by staying out. I want my benefits even if it takes my skin longer to heal. It’s worth it.