ATHLETE INTERVIEW: HOT YOGA WITH HARPER
Lifelong yogi Harper Botorowicz weights in on adding heat to your at-home workout with Pommello Sweats.
As 2019 wound to a close, the fitness industry had exploded into a nearly $100-billion global business, with exercise trends like high-intensity interval training (HIIT), indoor cycling and yoga leading the charge. The group fitness movement showed no sign of slowing down. Then, all of a sudden, it was 2020.
Today, a global pandemic has impacted the way we do just about everything, not the least of which is the way we exercise. Gyms and studios are slowly reopening, but options remain limited. For yoga practitioners who are used to incorporating heat into their workouts, it’s nearly impossible to get the same effect at home. Using your home’s heating system or adding space heaters can be a cumbersome and time-consuming process. And if you’re practicing in a garage, you may never be able to properly warm the space during cold winter months.
This is where Pommello comes in. While millions struggle to simulate their preferred exercises and environments, Pommello lets you increase the intensity of an at-home yoga session without compromising comfort or flexibility, and without the concerns of a group fitness setting. Through a scientific process—explained in detail here—Pommello returns your own body heat back to your muscles and joints to intensify your workout.
Harper Botorowicz is a Pommello brand ambassador and lifelong lover of yoga. She is trained as an instructor in Hatha, Vinyasa, Prenatal and Yin.
“I started practicing when was 13. So, over two decades ago. I love yoga because it’s connection. It connects me to how I’m feeling, if I’m dealing with anxiety or if I’m angry for some reason. It’s just a constant check-in and awareness—not only mentally but also physically. At this point [before quarantine] I teach at a hot yoga studio, so I’m in the studio almost five days a week. Mentally, it’s a lot more challenging. I feel like the hot yoga practice really applies to life, having that mental strength and the stamina to make it through that, it’s a different type of meditation. It also feels really great on your joints. It just encourages me to be healthier.”
Safely adding heat to your workout can have a multitude of benefits. In a famous 2010 study, cyclists who trained in heat for several days showed increases in power output, blood plasma volume, cardiac output and VO2max. A similar 2012 study showed improved rowing performance and thermoregulation in subjects who trained in heat.
There are immediate benefits too. Adding heat to your workout can increase blood flow to your muscles and joints. The generated heat also stimulate the lymphatic system, eliminating toxins, reducing inflammation and minimizing lactic acid buildup, leading to faster recovery and supporting overall health.
“Hot yoga studios are basically a mix between fitness class and a yoga class. It’s detoxing. It’s challenging. Missing the heat, in quarantine, I feel like you can get that wearing Pommello. You’re generating your own heat, and it’s insulating you, so the heat stays in. And you’re breathing in clean air, that’s the best thing. I would think this product would be really in-demand now because the online workouts and the at-home workouts are going to be around for a long time. Or, indefinitely.”
As Harper has had to adjust her routine, she hasn’t found another alternative to the heated yoga studio that gives her the results she gets with Pommello.The patent-pending HEATREFLECT™ technology at work helps you get the most out of every moment of your yoga flow. At home in the living room or garage, at the park, or at your studio, Pommello intensifies your workout in a way that other gear can’t. Just put it on and start moving.
“I’ve put a space heater in my apartment and turned it on but, honestly, I think Pommello is one of the better ways. I get sweaty without having to get super-hot, and I love the element of heat for my joints, that little bit of a tingle. I’ve had knee issues, elbow issues, but I feel like everything is nice and tight and the heat is almost massaging the joint. And I’m definitely sweating. I’ve found it really useful putting it on at home because I’m still getting sweaty and I don’t have to turn the heat on. There’s breathwork you can do, like breath of fire. But those are to stimulate your energy systems, to wake you up, kind of a substitution for drinking coffee. You might get a little sweat holding poses for a little longer, that might heat you up a little bit. But there aren’t many things that replace being in a hot studio like this product.”
Whatever physical activity you choose, be sure to accompany it with a healthy diet and plenty of rest and hydration. Listen to your body, adjust your workouts accordingly, and seek a professional opinion for any health concerns before undertaking a new fitness routine.