The heat is on at new Bikram yoga exercise class in Epsom
You may have heard of Bikram yoga as the high-temperature celebrity exercise fad.
It is championed by stars such as Lady Gaga, Gwyneth Paltrow, Madonna and David Beckham, and takes place in a room heated to a sweltering 40 degrees Celsius.
Now locals can enjoy the alternative means of exercise, as a Bikram studio has opened on Epsom High Street.
Hot Yoga Epsom, co-owned by Martin and Kate Sole, opened its doors mid-March and has beenattracting more and more participants each month.
"To achieve the temperature we use a space heater," Mr Sole, 46, explains, "This is essentially what huge warehouses like B&Q use to heat their buildings but in a concentrated area. We also use a steam humidifier."
These are vital because as Carolyn Boult, 49, who has taught for a year and has practiced Bikram for six years, explains: "The heat gets into the muscles and means that people can exercise and stretch safely.
"It’s like steel. If you try to bend cold steel it will break, but warm steel will bend. It’s the same for our muscles. The humidity makes you sweat and this helps you detox your body."
Frank Gomez, 47, and Angela Wright, 45, have been attending since May and are keen advocates for the workout. Mrs Wright, who was completely new to yoga before Bikram, says: "I came here wanting to get more flexible, which I definitely have.
"The heat adds a challenge and you tone-up so much more than regular yoga and Pilates."
Mr Gomez, who runs Kiko Soccer Schools across Surrey and coaches football to youngsters aged 18 months to 18 years, says: "Men feel like they want action from their work out, but this feels really cardiovascular.
"You sweat buckets. Premiership footballers have been practicing yoga and now men are starting to take it up more. What I also really like about this place is that you leave vanity at the door. There is no preening or judging."
But Hot Yoga offers more than just physical fitness.
Mr Sole says: "We have something different here. Nowadays people are on the go 24/7. This is 90 minutes out of your day that you spend focusing on just one thing. You blank out all of the usual worries, like work and getting the washing done. It’s a great stress reliever."
People aged 16 and older may participate in classes unaccompanied. Admission of younger children is made at the teacher’s discretion. One session costs £13. An introductory course of 10 consecutive days of unlimited use for £10 is on offer. Hot yoga Epsom is situated at 55 High Street, Epsom, for more information visit www.hotyogaepsom.com/ or call 01372 748822.
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