The effect of Bikram yoga on endothelial function in young and middle-aged and older adults

Stacy D. Hunter, Mandeep S. Dhindsa, Emily Cunningham, Takashi Tarumi, Mohammed Alkatan, Nantinee Nualnim, Ahmed Elmenshawy, Hirofumi Tanaka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Scopus citations


The purpose of this investigation was to determine if Bikram yoga, a style of heated hatha yoga, would improve endothelial function in young and middle-aged and older, healthy adults. This trial was performed in 36 young (n = 17) and middle-aged and older adults (n = 19) who completed 3 weekly Bikram yoga classes for 8 weeks. Height, body weight and body composition were determined and endothelial function was measured noninvasively using brachial artery flow-mediated dilation (FMD) before and after the intervention. No changes in body weight, BMI or body fat percentage occurred as a result of the intervention in either group. Brachial artery FMD was significantly increased in middle-aged and older (P < 0.05) but not in young adults as a result of the intervention. The results demonstrate that a relatively short-term Bikram yoga practice might significantly improve vascular endothelial function in middle-aged and older adults. While apparently healthy individuals in this study experienced no adverse events, those with preexisting conditions should take caution and consult with a physician prior to engaging in this style of yoga.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)30-34
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2017



  • Aging
  • Endothelial function
  • Yoga

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Complementary and Manual Therapy
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation
  • Complementary and alternative medicine

Cite this

Hunter, S. D., Dhindsa, M. S., Cunningham, E., Tarumi, T., Alkatan, M., Nualnim, N., ... Tanaka, H. (2017). The effect of Bikram yoga on endothelial function in young and middle-aged and older adults. Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies, 21(1), 30-34.