So you want to change up your workout routine and get more bendy, but the only thing you know about yoga is that you get to Savasana at the end. Well, this beginner’s guide is for you. The practice of yoga and all of its endless iterations can seem daunting. You don’t want to just walk into a class blindly and hope (no, pray) the instructor doesn’t call out for a headstand within the first five minutes—that’s an accident waiting to happen. Don’t be intimated. Here, you’ll find most of the types of yoga you’ll find in local gyms and studios. And if you’d rather fall while attempting triangle pose for the first time in the comfort of your home, there are always YouTube yoga videos.
Hot power yoga
Great for: Helping you lose weight (albeit, probably water weight)
This is one of the most intense forms of yoga available. The class might be called “Hot Power Yoga,” “Power Yoga,” or “Hot Vinyasa Yoga.” But no matter what your studio calls it, you’ll sweat like crazy. The flows usually vary from class to class, but the temperature of the room is always hot, thanks to the infrared heat. “Power yoga is a fun, challenging, high-energy, cardiovascular yoga class,” says Linda Burch, yoga instructor and owner of Hot Yoga, Inc. “A series of postures flow together to build strength, improve balance, flexibility, stamina, and concentration.”
In these heated classes, drinking plenty of water will make or break your success, as you can quickly feel lightheaded if you aren’t properly hydrated (and don’t even think about attempting inversions if you’re dizzy). “These classes can be a great way to induce flexibility and sweat, but anyone with conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, respiratory disorders, eating disorders, sleep deprivation, or pregnancy should consult their doctor before joining a hot class,”says Julie Wood, senior director of content and education at YogaWorks.