Bikram Yoga is a demanding series of 26 postures (asanas) and two breathing exercises (pranayamas), which is suitable for all ages and levels of ability.
Each posture stretches and strengthens specific muscles, ligaments and joints needed for the next posture. The Bikram method also stimulates the organs, glands and nerves, moving fresh oxygenated blood to 100 percent of the body, restoring all systems to a healthy working order.
Bikram scientifically designed this 90-minute program to deliver total health through the balancing and strengthening of every system in the body in order to prevent illness and injury, promote weight loss, and limit the effects of aging. In addition, the series of postures combine skills of concentration, patience, determination and self-control that increase mental clarity and reduce stress.
Bikram yoga is done in a heated room to warm your muscles, prevent injury, allow a deeper workout and cleanse the body by flushing toxins.
Bikram began learning Hatha Yoga poses in his native India, at the age of three. At five, he began studying with Bishnu Ghosh (Paramahnsa Yogananda’s brother) and quickly became a yoga champion. At age eleven, he was the youngest contestant ever to win the national India Yoga Competition. At 14, Swami Shivananda declared him “Yogi Raj” (King of the Yogis). At age 20, a weightlifting accident crippled Bikram. With the guidance of his guru, Bikram created his 26 posture series which restored his health.
In a United Nations sponsored research project at Tokyo University, Bikram helped doctors prove that yoga regenerates tissues and cures chronic ailments. Combining Eastern discipline and Western medicine, Bikram perfected his comprehensive system suitable for all ages and levels of fitness.
Bikram arrived in the United States in 1973 at the invitation of President Nixon and the urging of Shirley Maclaine. He quickly became the foremost yoga teacher in the West as celebrities, athletes, and others began to flock to him. Since that time he has been healing thousands of students at his school in Los Angeles and traveling the world extensively, bringing the benefits of Bikram’s Yoga to millions of students worldwide.