Water, water everywhere is not the best policy in Bikram yoga.
The key to staying hydrated is to drink plenty of water before you come to class. Otherwise, as soon as you start to sweat you’re playing catch up. This is especially important in the summer when you’re probably sweating more outside of class.
When you come to class make sure you have enough water with you. A 500ml bottles might be enough for some people, but I recommend bringing a 1.5 litre bottle. It’s better to have plenty, even if you don’t drink all of it. Running in and out of class to refill your water bottle is a distraction for the class and yourself, so please don’t!
Another thing I’ve noticed in some classes is students pouring water over themselves. Not just a little but practically a whole bottle. Water is for drinking, not showering! In Bikram class you should sip, not gulp, and certainly not splash.
Some experienced practitioners prefer to only drink water after class, which is fine if you are properly hydrated in advance, and fit enough to sustain the 90 minutes. This practice helps to eliminate toxins by building heat in the body. Drinking excessive water or wasting it is not going to help.
Sometimes, as a treat, I have a coconut water after class — it has electrolytes to replace salts lost through sweat, and natural sugar for an energy boost. Avoid juice or other sugary drinks though, as they don’t really offer any other benefits for your body.
How do you hydrate for Bikram? Share your tips in the comments!