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Hot Yoga, as the name suggests, is the practice of Yoga in extreme heat. People have been practicing Yoga for over an incredible 5,000 years and it has been linked to increased flexibility, improved muscle tone and cardiovascular health. These benefits are fantastic for everyone, but may be even more helpful if you’re living with PsA.
Yoga is especially good for people who experience arthritis symptom flare-ups. Recent studies of people with various types of arthritis show that regular Yoga practice can help reduce joint pain, improve joint flexibility and function and lower stress and tension to promote better sleep. Hot Yoga brings all of these benefits, and the sweat produced during a session is believed to help flush toxins from the skin. Another benefit is that the heat also helps warm up stiff muscles, meaning you can channel your inner Yogi to your heart’s content.
The more gentle forms of Hot Yoga, which incorporate stretching and deep breathing, can also help increase oxygen supply to different parts of the body, helping you to ease tension and improving circulation.
Hot Yoga encourages entire focus on posture, moving concentration away from the niggles and stresses of the day. This break from anxious thoughts has been proven to raise our mood and help us feel calmer; in fact, a study found that Yoga can reduce feelings of anxiety by up to 30%!1
It’s also been suggested that Yoga can help to increase bodily awareness, helping us to recognise any developing discomfort or irritation This can be especially helpful if you’re living with an illness like PsA which flares up at certain times; the sooner you can recognise the tell-tale signs of a flare up, the sooner a bout of discomfort can be stopped in its tracks.
Some people choose to take Hot Yoga classes wearing beach wear, and others go fully clothed. The choice is 100% yours and it’s most important that you feel relaxed and able to focus.
That said, some clothes may be more suitable for the class than others; light tank tops are perfect for Hot Yoga as the breathable fabric will help you to handle the heat! Try and avoid baggy clothing like oversized T-shirts as these can be obstructive and get in the way while perfecting your Downward Dog.
The biggest mistake Hot Yoga newbies make is underestimating how much they’re going to sweat. Believe us when we say you need to prepare to glow! Psoriasis symptoms are occasionally triggered by sweat, so make sure you take precautions like tying up your hair to minimize the amount of moisture left on the skin of your back.
Hot Yoga is a great way to relax after a long day, and isn’t just good exercise; it could make a real difference to your PsA.
All together now: “Ommmmmm”
1 The Minded Institute. Accessed 17 July 2019. https://themindedinstitute.com/yoga-for-anxiety/
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