let's talk about...

What’s wrong with being hot?

7 years ago by

For those of you who aren’t tired of me talking about yoga (you may note that this post is a mini-post. I know everyone who doesn’t do yoga IS SUPER TIRED OF HEARING ME TALK ABOUT YOGA and to them I say…

You’ve probably got a point, so don’t read this post, because not only am I going to talk about yoga, BUT WHAT’S MORE, I’M GONNA TALK ABOUT A YOGA THAT STINKS) listen up.

I tried it but did not fully wrap my arms around Hot Yoga (no pun intended).

However, it had everything that usually does it for me.

First of all, it was yoga.
Plus it wasn’t far from my house (we call this the lazy option).
And plus it’s supposed to make you lose weight (you can make me do anything if you just say, “you’ll get skinny!”)(I mean, it’s almost like, Hey Garance, jump of that cliff! It’ll make you skinny! And off I go, cliff jumping.)
AND they had a promo for a month unlimited just to try it.

I would have to be such a fool to not get into it.

Oh and let me add, it was definitely specified that it wasn’t Bikram Yoga.
I saw a few articles about Bikram and he scares me.
Maybe his yoga is amazing, but Bikram himself is a little scary, right?

Ok, just so I can speak totally freely, I’m not going to name the studio so I can give you the truest of the true account without being mean.

Because actually, the studio was great. Clean, great room, great people, really really really nice place.

But it seems like there is something you can’t avoid in a place where the reward is sweating (and I’m not talking about a sexy thin veil of moisture, no. I’M TALKING GALLONS OF SWEAT. Puddles, my friends, of sweat.) and that something is stink. Hot yoga… It just doesn’t smell good.

Yeah, ok. Our bodies are good though… After 5 minutes, you get so used to the smell, you almost (yeah, almost) forget it.

You almost get used to the heat. The yoga I was doing was not as hot as Bikram. It was like a hot day but inside.

You get used to sweating like a cow (I don’t know why we say that cows sweat) and you even learn, with our silly mind tricks, to think of sweat as some sort of reward.

You end up doing more than three loads of laundry a week just to wash the 12 towels you’ve brought home drenched in sweat.

(Non-yogis reading this… Don’t say I hadn’t warned you that was going to be gross.)

It’s weird. You can definitely see how you could start to love it.

Except for this:

(Text with Delphine, my friend who I named my health expert.)

“I like hot yoga fine, but I’m never sore. I think it’s just too easy.”
“No! It’s just because of the temperature that you’re not sore.”
“Naaaa, I don’t think so. I just think it makes people happy cause they’re sweating so much. #folksaresodumb.”
“And it stinks.”
“I think I’m going to stop actually.”
“It’s true though… I’ve lost five pounds. But that’s probably just because I went back to toast in the morning.”

Ok, so I’m faking a cliffhanger here, but there is actually absolutely no moral to that story: I just think the reason why Delphine was not answering is because she went to the bathroom (I know who does that? Go to the bathroom without her phone? Really?)

This is just to say that I stopped doing hot yoga and I’d love to hear what you have to say about this whole no-soreness thing.

Next time, I’m going to try air yoga. That’s gotta smell good, right?


Add yours
  • You should try out Tara Stiles’ studio. It’s called Strala Yoga and it’s on Broadway between Houston and Bleecker. I have a feeling you’d LOVE her teaching style. Just google her!

  • i’m pretty ignorant when it comes to yoga: hot or not… :)


  • I do hot yoga in summer!! Ba dum tssss….. Anyway, jokes aside, it is good to sweat because your toxins are outside your body, better out than in!!
    Another subject, did u ever think of rock climbing? It is AWESOME!!

    Big kiss

  • I don’t think I can do Bikram yoga. I don’t mind the heat or the sweating, I just don’t want to see others sweat! :) Once you have learned the basics of yoga, I find that it is best to do it on your own when you can truly focus on yourself and breathing, isn’t that the point?

  • As much as I admire the yogis, I just don’t see me getting into it. It’s like a cult, y’know? I started doing ballet again, but I hope yogis won’t give me hate for not doing yoga.
    Your Friend, Jess

  • Moi j’en fais mais que le premier niveau dans les 80F et j’adore… Mais j’ai des courbatures!!!!!!
    Tu as raison le hot yoga ca fait transpirer et ca pue….
    Sinon je voudrais aller dans un club exclusivement feminin parce que les mecs au hot yoga ça transpire a mort et ca pue vraiment… et l’image du mec torse nu avec plein de poils transpirant a mort qui fait le chien et du bruit et bah c’est vraiment degueu….

  • Hello Garance,
    I wouldn’t recommend hot yoga for most people actually. The heat in the room works on your flexibility but because you are able to stretch so much deeper than usual, you can get seriously injured from hot yoga. It kind of just fakes your muscles into thinking they are more flexible and stronger than they actually are. The reason you are not sore is because you are not working with strength, but in order to have a healthy body, one needs to use both strength and flexibility… That being said, I loved this post and totally stand behind your view point!

  • You know, I’ve had very few sore days after Bikram OR plain hot yoga… Maybe that’s good? Like you’ve stretched it out a little more than usual, but haven’t messed up anything?
    The big benefit of hot yoga is also the big danger with it – You’re more limber, and your joints can stretch farther because of the heat, but you also run the risk of overextending yourself without noticing, and causing serious damage.
    So, be careful (no matter what temperature!)

    If you’re sick of the sweat, swimming works you hard, but all the sweat just accumulates in the water! So you don’t notice it! (Wait, that sounds really gross now that I say it that way…)

  • Tu peux toujours essayer le yoga sur une planche de Paddle !
    Sinon le hot yoga, bien que je ne fasse pas de yoga, ne m’inspire rien. En général, la chaleur me freine (lors de mes footings ou quand je vais aux steps) donc je pense que c’est pas pour moi !

  • J’ai essayé le yoga l’été dernier. C’est d’un chiant !
    Alors oui, tu te sens bien dans ton corps parce que tu respires et que tu t’étires…
    Quand j’ai besoin de m’étirer et de me dépenser, je mets la musique à fond et je danse comme une folle.
    Je te garantis que ça défoule. Et c’est 100% efficace, surtout si tu fais ça devant un miroir, quand tu danses c’est un peu le moment où tu peux chercher comment être sexy sans être vulgaire, bref c’est la meilleure méthode pour “habiter son corps” comme tu dis…

    Je garde le jogging pour les mauvais jours, quand on m’a trop tapé sur les nerfs et que j’ai besoin de prendre l’air.

    Mais le yoga, franchement… Pour moi c’est comme les régimes détox, les compléments alimentaires, les “nail spas” etc… C’est dans la liste des trucs surfaits d’Américaines.
    Mais j’ai l’impression que quand tu vis à NYC tu ne peux pas y échapper.
    Que même moi, qui met un point d’honneur à ne plus accorder la moindre importance à mes fringues à partir du moment où je les ai enfilés, je crois que je pourrais tomber dans le panneau.

    J’ai raison ou pas?


  • Salut Garance!

    I tried hot yoga (also specified as non-Bikram) while on my year abroad in Vienna. And the sweat was…sweaty. For a year before I had been doing Ashtanga almost religiously, but I was still sore after the first time I went to this hot yoga studio.

    They were friendly etc. but the practice was a bit boring for me (not that it wasn’t challenging but I prefer flow and movement instead of holding poses for ages). And yeah, the sweat. But I have to say that lots of the women there were fit and looked like they had “hot-yoga-bodies” if you get what I mean.

    Anyway, I think I’m done with hot yoga and I’m sticking to my ashtanga. And if you’re still doing the Jillian Michaels videos, I just discovered this great channel on YouTube called “Fitness Blender” and it’s awesome! Talk about a great workout, and so much variety! I recommend you check it out.


    P.S. I love when you discuss health/fitness etc. I am also well aware of the differences between the American and European mentalities on these subjects.

  • Claudia August, 29 2013, 6:27

    I’ve started doing hot room Ashtanga; an already sweat inducing practice kicks your butt doing it in 90F. But I agree once you are used to Ashtanga the rest becomes a bit boring. I do enjoy it most of the time. It feels great sweating the toxins out.

  • Hi Garance! I love to hear people trying out different styles of yoga – there are so many and everyone is unique so it’s great to find what works best for you. It is true that heat can help warm up your muscles so you stretch more easily but you just have to be careful not to go too far (which is easy to do) and end up hurting yourself! I love yoga which uses the breath and movement to warm you up! <3

  • I am sooo with you! I really am tired of all the exercises that have to make you sweat like buckets, to make you think you are doing something good! As if it is a top trend or something. Everyone seem to think that if you sweat a lot you loose weight, wrong! Yes you do loose water in your body and when you replace it with water, it goes right back! I happen to like yoga in a room with air, maybe even a fan in the ceiling and lovely scent of lavender, I know am I reaching for the stars here? Not a fan of popular yoga classes that pack you in like sardines with people who don’t shower, brush their teeth or have clean clothes on, yep, good luck with “breathing in” in that class! All the power flow classes now feature extra warm rooms so that you can sweat more…..and this is why I have stopped doing yoga for now!

  • I did hot yoga for an entire year religiously, if you can believe that. Only because it was free – I cleaned the studio after my classes as a karma yogi. But one day, I got tired if cleaning up other people’s sweat, and having other people drop sweat on me, and always doing laundry. I haven’t gone back since! But…I definitely got sore. Our classes were intense, as in the ambulance came a few times for people who passed out!

  • I second the Tara Stiles recommendation. I can actually see her becoming, like, your yoga bestie and soon you’ll be featuring her on this blog like you do you other friends. :-) Tara has a relaxed teaching style, plus has the tall, lithe figure of a model/ballet dancer, both of which have made her very popular with young women.

    Glad to see you’re keeping up with your yoga practice! I tried Bikram once and quickly decided that it wasn’t for me (I’m pretty OCD about hygiene and smells). Plus, Bikram himself seems like an absolute creep (he’s currently facing rape and sexual assault charges). I’ll stick with my regular non-heated yoga, thanks.

  • Tu me fais rire chaque fois que tu parles de yoga! J’avais entendu parler du Bikram yoga et ça m’avait fait un peu peur (j’ai la phobie de tomber dans les pommes ou me sentir malade parce que j’ai trop chaud). Donc pour le yoga chaud j’ai eu l’impression que c’était la même chose que le Birkam. Enfin je suis pas certaine de comprendre la différence entre les deux mais disons que ça me fait peur toute cette chaleur, odeurs et transpirations. Pourquoi ne pas s’en tenir au yoga “normal”? Il me semble qu’on essaie toujours de trouver diverses façons toutes plus farfelues les unes que les autres de pratiquer le même sport. Et si on s’en tenait à l’essentiel?


  • Garance you must try Ashtanga yoga! I have been practicing for 4 months now and I, like you have never stuck to any exercise ever! Its the hardest thing I have ever done, you will hate it with a passion, not get it and go why and I doing this every day, BUT one day it will click and you will find that it has changed your life – I am only at the miniest (is that even a word?) of clicks and am already hooked! Find a Mysore trained person and try it! Life changing! xxx

  • I Love hot yoga, Bikram to be exact as well as Barkan. Keep talking about yoga maybe someone will become interested and reap the benefit from this wonderful but challenging practice it’s so good for the mind body and soul.

  • Garance, tu es tellement drôle! Je te comprends. Pour avoir essayé le hot yoga, j’ai pas aimé non plus. Je manquais de m’évanouir, blanche et déshydratée, tellement la chaleur était insoutenable. Je viens de Montréal et je pars étudier à Paris pour un semestre. J’espère t’y voir pendant la fashion week :)

  • I do Vinyasa Flow, a quite though Version of it and I must say, for me the smell of the studio is very important! The Yoga Studio I visit smells fabulous! They light up the good incense sticks and use some Spray sometimes at the end of a class, I love that! So, I guess hot Yoga is nothing for me ;-) xxx

  • I go to Virayoga once a week, but it’s mainly to realign the body and stay flexible. I think yoga is great but it doesn’t really help me lose weight. I think the best way to stick to exercise is to find an activity you like and make it a social thing. I didn’t really work out until a few years ago when I started going or karate class with a friend and we would get tacos after and hang out. Now I do Muay Thai. It’s sweaty and tiring but I love going to class and seeing everyone.

  • You should try Baron Baptiste’s hot yoga. It is not as hot as Bikram, and the flow is super challenging! Even super fit people get sore from it. You might like it!

  • Natalya, Brooklyn August, 28 2013, 1:52 / Reply

    Hey Garance,

    I stopped Hot Hatha Yoga 3 weeks ago after a year and a half of practising 3 times a week. First of all, it became boring. We did almost same routine and it stopped being fun.
    Second, one of my knees started to hurt and my doctor said I was putting too much pressure on it with some of the postures. And, finally, yoga doesn’t make you lose weight. I didn’t lose a pound and even my body wasn’t as toned up as I had expected.
    So, now, I’m back to gym. I have a personal trainer so will see how it is working out.

  • Had a similar experience. Was going religiously to hot yoga classes for months. Same sequence day in and day out. Didnt lose any weight. They kept telling us it was cardio but actually it isnt. It’s still considered mild exercise, just like any yoga. If you want to build up muscles at yoga, then Ashtanga/Vinyasa/Baptitste Baron Power Yoga is the way to go

  • J’ai fait 1 mois de yoga bikram l’année derniere ( à peu près identique à ce que tu décris mais les courbatures en plus ) , 1 offre d’essai d’1 mois illimité … j’avais beaucoup aimé la sensation de bien être mais le tarif des cours , une fois l’offre d’essai terminée, m’a dissuadé de continuer … cela ne devenait interessant qu’avec une offre de plus de 6 mois et encore en pratiquant très réguliérement, me connaissant c’était dépenser de l’argent à pure perte …


  • Oulalala Hot yoga, Bikram yoga, ashtanga yoga … Yoga Y ou yoga Y je ne parle pas cette langue, je ne comprends rien! Vais faire un tour sur le post suivant! ;p

    ( …Bon ok Garance t’avais prévenu hein!;) )


  • my GUESS is that since the soreness after exercise is supposedly from the increase in lactic acid in the muscles after working out, you are not sore because 1) your muscles are not working as hard – and the weight lost comes from the increased metabolic rate from the extreme heat and water loss… you should try going to the sauna regular like you do yoga to see if you lose another 5 pounds??? lol and 2)you can also sweat out lactic acid, so maybe that’s why… and P.S. why do people think sweat has toxins? or that you can sweat out toxins?? what toxins??? the worse thing you sweat out is urea, which your body is already getting rid of in PEE – sweat after exercise is just the body’s way to cool itself down

  • Haha what a great post! I practice hatha yoga, that doesn’t smell bad ;) XX Dianne


  • My dear Garance:

    I love your let’s talk about it posts, and I love yoga. Love is an understatement, I adore Yoga. However, Hot Yoga is not yoga for me. I believe my kind of yoga is relaxing, maybe challenging, but has not hot temperature involved. Sweat, yes, the natural one that my body produces with the poses, the steadiness and the effort, not the 90 degree artificial temperature. Having said that, I think it is great that there is an option for all kinds of people.

  • I’m totally with you. I tried hot yoga for a while, but felt so often like fainting (uh oh, why does everything look fuzzy…why does everything sound like i’m underwater…ahhhh i’m going to pass out!!!) and had to sit down to just get through the class, that i was like, what’s the point? why am i paying money to sit in a hot room that’s so hot i can’t even do the poses? it didn’t feel relaxing to be worrying about fainting in front of everyone. plus it was always overly crowded. so i stopped.
    i’m really into yogadownload.com lately – i can stream or download classes-they have tons!-whatever type I feel in the mood for, and for whatever length of time. and i can do it at home, stress-free!

  • Bikram convert August, 28 2013, 4:08 / Reply

    Dearest Garance:

    Bikram, the dude, is a scary item but the method/program is excellent. If you can get consistant attendance truely amazing physical/ mental results evolve.

    If the studio is stinky, blame the owner not the method. Good, antibacterial carpet ( that hospitals use) and cedar on the walls makes the difference ( studio owner needs to make the commitment). Having a good & regular cleaning service is also important.

    Try it for amazing results ????

  • At least you are still doing it! I went back to doing my run a day and can’t get back on track with P90X (which includes one killer session of yoga!!)!

    So tomorrow will be the day! finally going to “get it over with” and enjoy the pleasure of being so strong minded *lol* lets talk again tomorrow!

    xx Taty*


  • Hey G!
    Viens essayer theyogafactory à Paris filles du calvaire fin sept lors de la fashion week!
    Cest du hot Vinyasa flow!

    Je suis addict et tt le monde qui essaie l’est aussi…

    Check it out!



  • I did Bikram yoga… once. After 20 minutes I was ready to drop to the floor, dead. Then I remembered I just forgot to breathe and it got a little better afterwards. And I couldn’t as much as lift my arms for the next three days but I was quite pleased with myself to have survived it. I’m still contemplating going back, give it another try, though. But you do make hot yoga sound less… I don’t know, savage? :P
    I’ve been into yoga on and off for the past four years or so and I’d have to say I’ve enjoyed Vinyasa yoga the most!

  • I practised Bikram for a year or two and go from loving to hating to loving etc it. The smell in the room doesn’t bother me so much (as ‘bikram convert’ wrote, good floors help), but the smell of my laundry is horrific. Have you ever practised after a meal with too much garlic? ;)

    Someone wrote that Bikram is just about flexibility, not strenght. That is simply untrue. What I did find is that it takes time to find the balance between the two, it is indeed easy to mostly use your flexibility to get through the exercises (or your strenght, for that matter). A good teacher notices this. Next to that, you are constantly reminded to use your muscles (pull in your tummy! Tighten your leg muscles!) but – at least for me – it takes time to be able to do that, because you have to focus at many things. I find this one of the most challenging parts of Bikram: staying more or less relaxed and breathing through my nose while I’m tightening almost all my muscles.

    As far as ambulances go: I’ve never seen one around my school, and I’ve never seen anyone faint either. Doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen, but still.

  • I never force myself do endure anything I don’t enjoy….

  • Yvonne Marie August, 28 2013, 6:46 / Reply

    I love Bikram through and through. It’s actually the only yoga I do. I absolutely love the intensity and focus. Regular “air” yoga is so freaking boring!! If you have a good teacher, you will start to feel stronger and yes, leaner. Throughout my class my teacher says such beautiful and spiritual things to exercise our souls. Love!!

  • I’ve been practicing Bikram yoga in Southern California for about 4 months and I love it- it is sweaty and stinky (at first), but the results are so worth it for me. I’ve lost 15 pounds and have toned up significantly.

  • Yes! I quit doing yoga because of other people’s sweat!

    They have a right to it god knows — but it always dribbled or spritzed onto me! And THEY DON’T CARE!!!!! They shake their heads and toss their sodden towels next to my mat! Of course it smells! These people must enjoy it.

    Yoga is best in ethereal spaces like outside or have you ever been to the Cavallo Point in Sausalito? They teach complementary yoga in a converted army chapel. Now THAT’s soul-improving exercise — then you can take a hike in the headlands….heaven!

  • hahaha j’aime toujours quand tu parles de yoga…et la c’est bien degueu bouuuh! pas de hot yoga pour moi merci

  • Hi Garance, there are 2 types of exercise that everyone loves that I do not: yoga and running.

    However, I love Ellen Barrett DVDs. She’s happy, cheerful, feminine, upbeat, and has VERY good credentials. Her workouts are gentle yet effective, and almost poetic. Most are around 45 minutes. Another plus is she has so many DVDs (10+) that there is a great variety to choose from.

    Also: I try to remember that exercise is for toning and general well-being. The best way to lose weight and keep it off is through diet. That is, unless you exercise 2+ hours a day and who has time for that :-).

    Thanks for your lovely site :-).

  • I don’t like hot yoga and stinky sweaty people with bare feet. I do one yoga class a week just for my core so I will be able to get in and out of chairs when I am 70. No idea what type but lots of downward dogs and trees. But my favourite class by far is ballet barre class. It seems very basic, but your bum hurts after from all the work. You can hold weights during this class for extra arm work. And I ride my horse at least 3 times a week. All things I enjoy like crazy.

  • Franchement, je ne comprends pas cette folie du “hot yoga”.
    Ça l’air trop intense! Déjà que je transpire comme un cochon (encore
    une autre bête qui ne transpire pas visiblement plus que les autres) avec le yoga tout simple!

    Bon, j’adore le yoga, mais comme toi, Garance, je m’y tiens au yoga de base!

  • That you do not get sore really does come from the heated conditions you are practicing in. That doesn’t make it less of an intense excercise though ;). Just keep trying different types of yoga and different teachers! Eventually you’ll find what suits you best and will find yourself unable to stop doing it. That really happens. At least it happened to me and I even ended up becoming a yoga teacher, haha. So beware…
    Enjoy the journey! XLisanne

  • I actually used to do hot yoga, but I’ve stopped. My trainer mentioned that working out in increased heat forces the body to lose a lot of water and nutrients (hence weight loss) that are really hard to replenish past work out. Therefore, it becomes another way of starving the body of what it needs. Needlesstosay, I love my trainer (and the results), so I’ve followed his advice and stuck with normal air yoga and Pilates.

  • Salut Garance!

    J’habite à Buenos Aires et ca fait 2 ans que je pratique Méthode DeRose (Swasthya Yôga). Il y a des écoles à NYC et à Paris! C’est vraiment très different de tous les types de yoga que tu puisses trouver et ca vaut le coup d’essayer.
    Je te laisse le site: http://www.deroselifestyle.org

    J’adore ton travail et ton style!



  • I hate Bikram yoga! Once I bought a serie of classes but I never passed the 3rd one because all the sweating, the heart over beating. If you like sauna maybe you’ll like Bikram. Not for me!

  • I have been doing Bikram yoga for three years religiously and all I can say is I have seen many transformations myself included. When you mention the sweat smell I do remember my first class and the stench but then you just become accustomed to it and no longer smell it. I suggest that you never go to India if you don’t like the smell of a hot yoga room. When I first started I could barely touch my toes, now I can lie my body along my legs and reach way past my toes. I can also do a standing bow or standing split among other poses.

    Every new person that starts I watch intensely as they wrinkle their nose at the smell, wipe the sweat off their brow, and look around at everyone else scowling. All I can say is I was one of those once but only after a few classes did I realise that Bikram is the best thing that has happened to me.

  • Does anyone think it is actually really unhealthy to lose so much water?
    I did hot yoga once and drank about 2 liters of water during the day before class and then another 2 afterwards, but still felt really thirsty and dehydrated the next day.
    A make-up artist friend of mine says she can tell if a person is a hot yoga/Bikram fan, because their skins are so dehydrated.
    It just seems so very unnatural and farfetched to exercise in an environment that hot.

  • Garance, j’adore tes posts sur le yoga, ils me font hurler de rire.
    By the way, je n’ai jamais essayé le hot yoga donc je ne me rends pas bien compte. Enfin vu qu’on me dit que j’ai un nez bionique, je pense que cela ne me conviendrait pas trop.
    Et puis franchement, comment tu fais pour tenir en chien la tête en bas quand tu transpires de partout, y compris des mains ????

    Et depuis Delphine, elle t’a pas donné plus d’informations ?

  • Le Bikram yoga, dans le fond c’est comme du yoga in situ en Inde pendant la période de pré-mousson. On crève de chaud et quoi qu’on fasse on transpire…C’est bien, cela dit ça, trop transpirer c’est aussi risquer de se déshydrater…Et perdre de l’eau ce n’est pas perdre du gras!

  • I started doing yoga about a month ago, and altough I cannot really see my body changing (I have problems with thyroid), I feel so much better and more… healthy, I can say. Well, next week I have to go to school again after two months of doing totally nothing but yoga, so I hope I’ll still have time for it. I love it. But I don’t really think I’d ever do Bikram or Hot yoga, plus there is no place to in this city.

  • Pour répondre à la question sur les courbatures, je pense qu’en effet la chaleur limite l’apparition des courbatures.
    Généralement les sportifs de haut niveau font ce qu’on appelle un décrassage après l’effort physqiue ; généralement sauna ou Hammam parce que ça facilite la récupération, élimine les toxines et prévient les courbatures. Maintenant est-ce que faire du sport et du décrassage en même temps fonctionne je ne peux pas l’affirmer mais pourquoi pas .!!!!

  • ben je fais partie des gens “bêtes/maso”, moi je fais du Yoga Bikram et j’adore ça et c’est vrai que parfois certaines personnes ont des odeurs corporelles fortes, mais la plupart du temps c’est masqué par les huiles essentielles qui sont diffusées pendant la pratique… et puis oui on perd du poids, on se gaine, on se relaxe, n’est-ce pas le but? alors comme dans tous les sports il y a toujours un petit revers, mais franchement, je trouve que c’est vraiment pas très gênant pour le bien-être que j’en retire… donc vive le Yoga Bikram et tant pis si ça ne fait pas l’unanimité! Je pense que s’il y a tant de yoga différents c’est aussi pour répondre aux attentes de plein de gens différents… donc c’est pas grave de pas aimer le Hot Yoga ou le Yoga bikram… c’est pas parce que c’est la tendance du moment qu’il faut s’y plier :)

  • Eh Garance , tu n’es pas obligée de faire du yoga parce que c’est la mode! Laisse tomber , pratique un sport , ou pas , stop à la dictature! De plus tu es mince , oui , tu es mince , ne laisse pas toutes ces modes te pourrir la vie .
    Perso je fais du Pilates et j’adore . Mais je ne me force pas .

  • Give it a try to Kundalini, no bad smell, and you will feel the “soreness thing”!!!

  • Coucou Garance.
    Bon alors moi je suis le mauvais exemple parceque je DÉTESTE faire du sport en collectivité, mais je ense que tu as eu a 100% raison d’avoir arrêté.
    Eeeeeeewwwww! La transpiration ! Et en plus celle des autres!!!!
    Moi déjà je DÉTESTE quand JE sens la transpiration ( d’ailleurs j’ai trouvé un miracle chez LUSH qui ne t’empêche pas de transpirer mais qui annule juste l’odeur ) alors si je sens celle des autres!!
    C’est une des raison pour laquelle je me suis exilée en province : l’odeur de la transpiration dans le métro parisien , eerk!!
    Bref, je me rabats sur la marche ( moins violent que jogger mais qui donne autant de résultat) et j’utilise le,moins possible la voiture ( vive la,poussette!!!!).
    Résultat : j’ai perdu TOUS mes kilos de grossesses ( ok je le dis, j’en ai,pris 25 ) en 18 mois. Sans trop de traces parceque fait en douceur ( je signale que c’est mon deuxième petit bébé ).
    Donc un conseil, fait du lèche vitrine avec ton casque à fond pendant 45 minutes et tu verras les résultats.
    Sans efforts et sans odeurs des autres.
    Voilà! (3615 my Life la meuf! Qu’elle vieille expression que les moins de 20 ans ne peuvent pas connaiiitreuh!).
    À bientôt.

  • Hey Garance!

    I’ve practiced hot yoga for a year now (in the West Village – maybe we go to the same studio?!). It isn’t bikram, but its hot. Mostly vinyasa in the heat.

    Anyway, I come from the camp of working out at least 4-5 days a week in the gym. When I chose to quit the gym and focus on yoga, I feared becoming a bit “plump,” but boy oh boy I was wrong!

    Yoga not only changed my body, but it changed my mind (which is probably the most important thing about yoga!)

    Very rarely do I feel sore. I’m usually only in pain if I skip two or more days of class or if my mind just isn’t “there.” With that, like I said above, my body has changed a lot. I am leaner and have built an amazing amount of upper body strength – more than I ever had after lifting arm/back/shoulder weights. Also, I can’t lie, my legs look amazing! :)

    For me, yoga is a journey – it is a metaphor for life. Since I began my practice, my mind has calmed down. I am less stressed/anxious. I am more aware. I’ve also learned to treat myself with kindness and to not be so hard on myself. I used to get frustrated because I couldn’t touch my toes, especially when I would practice next to someone who was super flexible. Then one day I realized yoga isn’t about being able to touch your toes. Its about the journey you take to master a pose. When I was finally able to reach my toes, I was so happy because it was something I focused on and worked hard for.

    I could go on and on with the metaphors that I’ve learned from yoga, but I’ll save you the time :)

    Whether you liked hot yoga or not, at least you tried it! That’s something to be happy for!

    Oh, lastly, one more thing I’ve learned from yoga – Change your thoughts, change your world. Never forget that :)

  • I often make the parallel between yogis and stoners. The more often they smoke weed, the more often stoners feel the need to talk about it…all…the…freakin…time. I have a few yogi friends that do that too – you can tell when they’ve tried something new because they can’t help but tell everyone they know, and it seems that’s the ONLY thing they want to talk about.

    Unlike stoners, I don’t mind yogis so much – they just want everyone to catch on to a healthy workout that might also help you sweat out 10 pounds of water you’re carrying around. I can’t be mad at that. :-)

    Bikram yoga freaks me out too – but yoga in a hot room sounds fine, especially if it helps with some of the soreness that people experience. Stay hydrated, and have fun doing all that laundry!

  • :D This is the best comment here really!
    I totally agree! Yoga is something you do for yourself, to feel good, or not feel good about, its just something you do. It has nothing to do with How much weight you lose, or how fit you are, or even how flexible you became. When I read these comments my thought is ” The world is on its ass” Exercising should be a natural and enjoyable thing you do, nothing you do by forcing yourself or because of getting skinner! It should be a natural everyday thing, not somethings special you need to talk about or need to blog about either.
    When I went to India and stayed there for a long time studying yoga, the the local people told me ” You western people are so funny, you talk about yoga after your class all the time, we Indians we just do yoga, and live a normal life along with the yoga, no need to discuss it” Think about that ;)

  • I’ve been practicing Shivananda Yoga for a couple of years now and I really like it mainly because the asanas are so well balanced. After stretching some parts of your body in on way, you do the counter position to stretch them in the opposite direction. Like, you do the candle with your neck squeezed so that your face almost touches the chest. And then you go fish to release the tension.

    I’ve never tried hot yoga, but I remember one particularly hot day (over 36°C). I went to my yoga classes and I’ve never felt so flexible. You friend is right, high temperature is good for your muscles.

  • Hot yoga does wonders for my skin when I practice consistently! I’ve tried almost all types of yoga and hot/bikram has given me the best results, physically and mentally. You lose weight, correct your alignment, clear your skin and body of toxins, gain muscle strength and flexibility and clear your mind of any outside thoughts because it is too damn hot to think about anything else. A little stink is a small price to pay for the benefits of hot yoga. Also, who wants to go to the exercise classes that make it difficult to lift your bag or sit down the next day. Balance is key!

  • Garance, ne fais JAMAIS de danse et, même après la plus sublime des représentations du Lac des Cygnes, ne passe JAMAIS backstage. Le sublime se paie au prix de sceaux de transpi et autres trucs bien cracra. Même les parfums les plus entêtants (j’asperge ttes mes tenues d’Angel de Mugler) capitulent parfois :-)) Ca en vaut la peine (pour le yoga, je sais pas, par contre)

  • Me, I don’t do hot yoga or any yoga (can’t bring myself to face the “spirituality,” where I live is so… granola). Anyway, a health nut friend of mine warns against hot yoga. She says the heat makes people think they are more flexible than they really are, making them more prone to injury. Don’t need to be getting hurt!

  • Je viens de mettre et ca pue, mais c’est bien!

  • I’ve done hot yoga, and only hot yoga. At the beginning I did it for the girls, at the end, I did it cause I loved hot yoga! haha.

    I’m a straight guy and read your blog on a weekly (?) basis, I never quite understood why, but perhaps I get a peek into a women’s world of clothing, make up and all-things-girly. I think it helps when I talk to women and see where they are coming from when having difficult with choosing shopping, make-up or body image. I scan through comments in certain articles and see some commonalities. I haven’t decided if it’s a waste of time or helpful yet. I guess I’ll know when I have a girlfriend and she’s struggling with that “ideal dress” or “those perfect pumps” for a evening event. Then again perhaps no girl likes it when her man is helping with a topic she doesn’t know he knows oh-so-much about right? I’m sure Scott helps a lot, but that’s different when you both work in fashion.

    Perhaps it’s better to understand and listen in silence while she faces the struggle (yes?).
    At least I won’t be making another girls day more frustrating by agreeing with whatever and saying “Yeah, yeah, whatever, they both work. Let’s go!” and making it all the more difficult (cause I have, but maybe I won’t now).

    So this is partially a comment, question and a compliment!
    Thanks Garance, for helping a few guys graze the complexities of women’s fashion conscious minds.

  • bonjour :-)
    il y a une grande confusion entre ce qu’est réellement le Yoga et ce qui est proposé comme dérivés et qui ne devraient jamais de la vie porter le nom de yoga .
    c’est dommage dommage..
    bonne journée :-)

  • macaroni August, 29 2013, 12:03 / Reply

    I don’t like hot yoga, esp. not during summer when it’s so hot outside already, it could be nice to do it in winter and get some sweat. But otherwise, I prefer room temperature yoga… and yes… it stinks so badly with hot yoga…ewwww

  • It’s funny to me, all these people saying they do “hatha” yoga – that just means a physical yoga practice of any kind. Other yogic forms involve different meditation techniques and spiritual studies. When we in the western world say “yoga” we generally mean hatha, of which there are many many types.

    I personally love bikram but the regimented and repetitive nature appeals to the former competitive swimmer in me – everyone doing the same thing, for the same amount of time, over and over. It makes my own personal progress easy to chart and since the teacher is speaking for the entire class (except during savasanas) I can just focus on their words and it is the closest to a mediative quiet mind I’ve ever felt. Knowing what’s coming, force of habit, a steady stream of instructions – I find it all immensely calming. And I work so hard, the sweat, the quads, how my legs shake in utkatasana, it’s all good.

    Also, lastly what I enjoy about bikram is that all levels are welcome and it is said several times during all classes “With correct form, 1% of the posture gives 100% of the benefit.” So empowering!

  • I’ve practiced hot yoga for quite some time and it is freaking awesome. Sure, we were all swearing like cows (cows must sweat too!), but god it felt good! And I was sore as hell, but just after the first class. :)


  • Courage pour trouver le yoga qu’il te faut Garance!
    xx http://wildlysweet.blogspot.fr

  • Tizzylish August, 29 2013, 5:24 / Reply

    I think hot yoga stinks…and there is something that is not organic with exercising ones muscles in a hot room. One feels more limber….but it is easier to hurt oneself more easily. the normal warning signs of pain are nt longer there to stop us from bending too far..too much. Ouch.

    I recently did Iyengar yoga in Paris this July. We were all sweating and the room was not heated.
    I think it is important to find a yoga space close to your home…Now you need to find a yoga that suits you and your life.

  • Hi Garance!
    I loved your story about Bikram yoga! Funnily enough – i was hoping that one day you will try it. Because you do some other yoga :)

    I have been doing Bikram yoga on and off for almost 7 years now. I started doing it in Auckland (New Zealand) and now i live in Melbourne and trying to find a studio that i will love. Loved my first yoga teacher Nicki (she is in Auckland :)). Anyway – i agree – the smell is not great. But the benefits of yoga – are amazing!

    I’m not sure why you are not sore after the class – it is true – that your body is warmed up and it makes it a bit easier to do some postures when you are warmed up properly! But the next day and day after – i’m so sore from the class – it is not funny!!

    I have done all sorts of exercises in my life time – gyms, classes (pump, body attack, zumba), you name it – i have done it! But the only class which transformed my body (meaning my thunder thighs) is Bikram yoga!!! And i guess if it was not me who writing it, i would probably would not believe it!

    My point is – give it another go!! your class was 90 mins , right? two series – standing (1 hr) and lying on the floor (30 min). Maybe you can find a class where there is no carpet and some windows (so they can ventilate the room after class :))) There is a studio like that at Prahran (Melbourne) – it did not stink…

    One more thing – i have been to Bikram yoga retreat this year July in Ubud, Bali with Norma Strang (Norma is from Byron bay)! it was the best 7 days in my life – Bikram daily and raw vegetarian food only!! Amazing!! I know you been to Ubud this year too! I hoped i could meet you and take a picture with you and take your autograph :)))

    This is all i wanted to say!
    Still love your blog and the way you write about things, honestly and funny!

  • try hotbox yoga in prahran. i love it.

  • Lovechoclate August, 30 2013, 11:06 / Reply

    Hi !

    Sans expérience, si ce n’est un hAtha Yoga commun -diront nous-,…
    J’ai déjà vu des reportages de cette MARQUE (déposée il me semble par M..?). Mais l’envie n’est jamais apparue. Forte et tout… Le truc, maigre les vaches, rouge la fille… Ok mais dans certaine limite. Et le Yoga pour moi c’est une philosophie. Un principe qui se fait avec un tapis, si j’ai de la chance avec mon daddy, pourquoi pas sur une plage mais surtout avec un groupe calme, cool… Respirant et transpirant dans le Ôm…………….

    Mais comme on dit “qui ne tente pas ne sait pas”. Y’a quand même anguille sous poisson.

    Merci pour Vos articles, Tes photos. C’est un plaisir de WE pour moi de vous lire.

  • Hi,
    I’ve never tried yoga (hot or otherwise), but I have to say I agree with you in what you said about feeling sore. If I’m not feeling sore, I don’t feel like I’m working out. That’s what happened to me with pilates, I didn’t feel like I was doing any kind of excercise.

  • Airyoga is a fun relaxing thing to do, but has nothing to do with yoga really. They just use the name yoga, It could be Air moving actually. But its fun for a while. But its not yoga, not even close :D

  • Je fuis le hot yoga ou le bikram (mais quelle est la différence ???) car déjà au vinyasa yoga je transpire grave…. (j’ai même, au secours, une serviette à sueur) alos je sens que je suis du genre à faire un méga malaise dès qu’il fait trop chaud.
    et puis pour moi le yoga c’est plus pour la respiration et l’étirement que pour le challenge… alors je ne comprends pas trop la folie des yogas machins chose qui pronent tout et n’importe quoi… même si comme toi, Garance, si on me vend le “skinny” concept je suis très attirée…
    ce que je veux : un studio en bord de plage avec de l’air qui circule, une matinée d’été avec petite senteur d’oranger… (et pas mon studio de paris, sympa mais pas trés ventilé….).

  • lauren s. September, 1 2013, 9:36 / Reply

    Hi Garance,
    I did Bikram yoga consistently for about 1.5 years and then started reading more of the research surrounding it (plus, learning more about the founder). And I too have stopped! I find regular vinyasa and hatha to be more beneficial because it is actually LESS stressful when you don’t have to worry about all the laundry and the smells. When you’re just fighting to stay afloat and not collapse in the heat, and when everything is slipping everywhere, I couldn’t really get deeper into the physical practice.

    Also, this was the best article I could find:
    “The benefits are largely perceptual.”

  • Haha I feel like I’m reading about my life here. Did Bikram yoga in the summer in London. You think New Yorkers smell? Try Londoners!! Coupled with a hot shorts and spanx dresscode and an instructor from Jersey yelling at you like you’re on a horse race track for 1.5 hours.. My memory was the smell of feet and the achievement of sweating through my Dry Fit Nike shirt. Good times :)

  • hi all, i have had different experiences with hot yoga. i first tried bikram yoga, and at the time it was all wrong for me, and super SMELLY. i have felt really cold this past winter (i’m down under), so i felt like it was time for another go at hot yoga. this time i tried power flow, a barkan style yoga under infra-red heating to 30 C. i find it powerful and invigorating, and muscles i didn’t know i had are hurting after each class. this style of yoga is definitely strong, and strength building. infra-red heat mimics the sun, its better for our bodies!

  • My boyfriend does Bikram 6 days a week ! Imagine the laundry I have to do ! the towels are heavy from stinky sweat and stench from that unmistakable Bikram smell. I HATE their sticky, smelly carpet, I hate when ( while changing positions) someone else’s sweat lands on my skin. You can’t breathe and students regularly walk out of the class… I do it once in a fortnight, because its awesome for weight loss, and there is an incredible sense of high and wellbeing takes your body over, when you finally get out of the room. But it is more like a torcher chamber that a tranquil environment. . . ..

  • I like doing Hot Yoga as i find it more relaxing – there’s something about the heat which is especially nice in the middle of winter.

    I’m not sure what the fuss is with the sweating business – its perfectly natural and as long as no-one is dripping on you, it ain’t doing no harm. As for “the stink” I’ve never noticed any smell at the place I go to, but they do have wooden floors + require you to use your own mat.

  • I love yoga talk! You tried it, you don’t love it, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that.
    I fell in love with hot yoga this past spring. I tried it at a couple of places before I found my home. The style I practice most often is Moksha. Usually I don’t find the classes smell that much. I also find that I do use strength. How can you hold a posture without it? Sometimes I am sore depending on how I push myself, but sometimes I am not.
    The immense amount of sweat is a [email protected]*h!! It is quite taxing, the sweat the laundry what it does to your hair (relaxed hair!! Mon dieu!)

  • I cannot comment on hot yoga as a whole, only to say that Bikram is terrifying. It was the first hot class I ever took and I had a nervous breakdown and cried through the whole thing. Of course I was too terrified to leave midway through after the stern warning we all received at the start about such an unthinkable act. And I’ve never tried hot yoga since…

  • Salut Garance!
    Alors moi je fais du Bikram Yoga, et franchement, à chaque séance je me demande pourquoi je m’inflige pareille souffrance! Non seulement la chaleur est intolérable mais en plus c’est hyper dur! Surtout pour une non-sportive comme moi. J’ai d’ailleurs noté qu’on avait la même stratégie de placement à côté de la porte de sortie, ce qui m’a permis de m’évader discrètement la dernière fois. C’était ça ou mourir asphyxiée.
    Quoi qu’il en soit, moi, les courbatures, elles sont bien présentes après chaque classe! Donc entre ça, la chaleur et la difficulté, je persévère, mais comme m’a fait remarqué ma psy, j’ai une fâcheuse tendance à vouloir me faire suer… et puis, il paraît que ça fait mincir…

  • J’ai éclaté de rire devant tes petits malheurs avecle Yoga ! Mais je te comprends, j’ai esssayé une fois et j’ai arrêté tout de suite après haha !

  • Anne-Sophie September, 18 2013, 1:57 / Reply

    hey Garance,

    I have neen doing Yoga and Hot Yoga for the past year now and must say I love them both to change up my other workouts which consists of P90X, Insanity, swimming and Pilates, walking the dog to grab a coffee and going for hikes in the mountain to take some nice cloud pictures. :-)

    I live in Shanghai where classes are mostly girls and always scent free. :-) I guess I can be happy for that now that I read all the other people’s comments on bad smell! :-)
    I tried Hot Yoga at Yot8Yoga in LA and Triyoga in London this summer and loved all their classes! Absolutely no smell. I had some skin problems on my hands ( dry as hell from doing too much manual work being a photographer and no cream or oil could help me ease the problem). After a week of going every day to Hot Yoga in LA my skin was completely healed and back to normal. Best thing that happened to me in a while.

    except from the website of Hot8Yoga regarding bad smell:
    AT HOT 8 YOGA THE ROOM IS ALWAYS BEING PUMPED WITH FRESH OXYGENATED AIR!! In addition, all of the air coming into our studio pass through ultraviolet lights killing 99.98% of all harmful bacteria. The result is fresh air that doesn’t smell and is not full of harmful bacteria. Practicing yoga at Hot 8 Yoga will have a dramatic effect upon your physical and mental well being. In contrast, just think about how harmful it is to practice in a studio that does not bring in fresh air. Throughout the class at other hot yoga studios, yogis are breathing in all the oxygen and filling the room with carbon dioxide and germs!!

    Here are my tips for happy yoga classes:
    A. use your own yoga mat and towel ( towel is super important as with the right towel you won’t slip, I bought three before I found one that seems to work for now).
    B. look for the right studio with proper ventilation, floor, teacher and try to avoid room where you touch someones nose when you stretch your legs to the side
    C. go to a studio where students seem to respect the scent issue. Everyone should come in clean ( early morning classes are usually much better as people haven’t spend the day out sweating already and then coming into class) and scent free.
    D. Use those offers where you can try out as many classes/teachers as you like for 20 Dollars for two weeks or something. I only realized during my 8th yoga teacher that it hugely matters who is teaching you yoga. Only with my 8th Yoga teacher did I suddenly started to understand what yoga is all about.

    For all those who haven’t had good experiences with yoga it is usually more a problem of the user experience ( bad teacher, bad stinky studio, bad vibe) than the yoga itself. Maybe just give another studio a try.

    Hope this helped!

  • Hello Garance!

    Bon déjà j’ai envie de commencer par dire: chacun son truc! C’est pour ça qu’il y autant de types de yogas différents, et puis parfois certains trucs nous déplaisent à un moment de notre vie, puis plus tard ça tilte et on adore.
    Mon truc ça a toujours été la danse. Toute petite j’ai commence au royal ballet, puis j’ai changé, arrêté recommençé…Bref, j’ai grandi en en faisant régulièrement (environ 30h par semaine!). C’est ma mère qui m’a fait essayer le Bikram en période ‘off’ pour rester fit. Super jeune, c’était le seul truc qui me motivait à y aller. Puis les années ont passe, j’ai arrêté la danse (me suis rendue compte que je voulais gagner ma vie) et j’ai repris le Bikram cette année. Quand on fait de la danse, on est un peu maso, super-perfectionniste et franchement accro a la discipline.. Danseuse une fois danseuse toujours! Je pense que ‘est pour ça que beaucoup d’athlètes qui ont arrêté ou simplement choisi de vivre une vie ‘normale’ adorent le Bikram. Ça nous remet dans le même état d’esprit.
    Au début, je pensait qu’au physique- faire des poses, transpirer, regagner de la souplesse etc. Mais cette fois ci je commence VRAIMENT à aimer. Au bout d’un mois, je ne sent plus la chaleur (wtf?). Je me concentre, je dis à mon cerveau de se la fermer, et c’est ça le vrai power! Franchement, au début c’est DUR. Ça pue, et au bout d’une heure, toute mon énergie était concentrée sur ‘je veux sortir je veux sortir respire mon cul JE VEUX SORTIR!!’. Aujourd’hui, j’ai plus confiance en moi- je sais que je suis capable, et donc je ne m’embête pas a penser à la chaleur. J’y vais. J’evite de trouver des excuses pour procrastinater. C’est moi qui controle mon esprit. C’est vrai que la chaleur te rend plus souple et donc qu’il est possible de se faire mal, mais il faut faire la différence entre la douleur que tu recherches et la douleur à éviter. Difficile à faire quand on a jamais fait de sport, mais c’est pour ça qu’il faut un bon prof. Franchement, il est difficile de se déchirer un muscle sans s’en rendre compte. Peut importe ce que l’on fait, il faut etre a l’ecoute de son corps (je HAIS cette expression). Les changements se font petit a petit, et perso, durent. En danse, JAMAIS on commencerait par s’étirer un max, on s’échauffe d’abord. Pareil pour le yoga, le séquence est importante. Puis faut pas s’étonner qu’on puisse pas faire tout pareil dehors à froid.
    Les courbatures sont toujours pires quand on reprend. Une fois qu’on a modifié ce que notre corps considérait comme ‘la norme’, il faut plus de travail pour avoir plus de courbatures. La sueur = rien a voir. On sue quand on fait de la cardio, point. Et parce que du coup on à plus chaud.
    Le yoga, comme la danse, est un travail sur soi même. À chaque fois que j’y vais, j’apprend un nouveau truc. Le côté répétitif me rappelle un bonne barre de ballet. Avec la méditation en plus. Chacun son challenge, no judgement- moi c’est travailler ma force, pour d’autres c’est pousser la souplesse. Apprendre à respirer. Et puis personne te regarde, c’est ton moment a toi. Y’a pas d’esprit de compétition parfois un peu trop destructif. Rien a foutre de ce qu’elle fait la blonde pulpeuse de l’autre côté de la salle!
    Enfin bon, un post trop long, tout ça pour dire que ba… ÇA DÉPEND. Il faut aimer, sinon ça sert à rien, mais PEUT ÊTRE peut être (sounding cult-like??) qu’un essai n’est pas assez… Moi je dis, ré-essaye G, tu te surprendras peut être. Faut pas se comparer, faut respirer (sinon cest pas du yoga) et essayer de profiter- c’est parfois les trucs les plus durs qui sont le plus rewarding!
    Ah, et dernier truc, il faut TOUJOURS bien s’hydrater, hot-yoga ou non. Plein de thé dans la journée, une coco-water avant, et sa passe CRÈME! ;)

  • I love Hot yoga but recently stopped going because I just cannot stomach THAT STINK anymore !!!!!
    looking for a good alternative

  • I go to a great Hot Yoga studio in Melbourne, it’s a “fresh air” studio. The heat is created by using radiators and fresh air is pumped through the room, they have essential oils in bowls on the radiators, you are aware you are in a room full of sweaty people but it’s not overpowering.

From the Archives

Holiday Gifting
  • Holiday Gifting
  • This or That
  • Happy Holidays!
  • #AtelierDoreDoes
  • How To...
Hill City: The Gift That Keeps On Giving

Hill City: The Gift That Keeps On Giving

Deb Watson’s Guide to Gifting

Deb Watson’s Guide to Gifting

The Gift of Giving Gifts

The Gift of Giving Gifts

lessons in gifting steven alan presents expert series garance dore photos

Lessons In… Gifting