There are many reasons why people do yoga, with the benefits they seek being mental, physical, and often a combination of both. One of the most common reasons for doing yoga is to lose weight, and there are countless examples of individuals who have been able to do just that, thanks to these powerful asanas.
The yoga that they have followed to lose weight is often done at a local class, and these are very popular. However, following a yoga program at home is every bit as popular, can be equally effective, with the added advantage of you not having to leave your house.
One such program is the Yoga Burn Challenge which has a sequential series of yoga exercises and poses that can provide several benefits, including weight loss.
Misconceptions About Yoga and Weight Loss
Despite all the evidence available, yoga is not something that many people immediately associate with weight loss. More common routes that they consider include things like dieting and strenuous physical exercise. Another myth which rises from many of the media portrayals of yoga is a class full of slim females in leotards with not an ounce of extra fat to be seen anywhere.
The reality is that yoga is enjoyed by both males and females, plus there are many people who do yoga, who see it as an integral part of their weight loss program. It may not be the only activity that is contributing to them being able to lose weight, but it can undoubtedly help, as well as bringing them other benefits.
How Yoga Can Help Weight Loss
Obviously, there are some core activities that should form part of any weight loss program. The most common of these is to adjust your dietary habits so that the food you are eating is nutritionally balanced, and that what you eat has a calorie limit.
To complement this, activities which help your body to burn off any calories, and more importantly, excess fat, should also be taken up. The range of these activities is almost limitless, and there is one that will be suitable for anyone who wishes to lose weight.
Yoga offers many benefits to those wishing to lose weight, with one of the most obvious being that it allows your body to burn calories. Another is promoting additional flexibility in your joints, which can help you take part more in other sports and physical activities.
Another very important benefit of yoga, is the positive impact it can have on your mental state. The specifics can be anything from encouraging a positive outlook that keeps you motivated to maintain your weight loss activities, to keeping your mind focused on the goal of losing weight.
5 Yoga Poses For Weight Loss
These poses can be done in any order, and if there is one or more you particularly like, then repeat it more often. As with any activity of this sort, do not attempt these poses if you have an injury or ailment which curtails your physically ability to do them.
The Upward Dog Pose
This is a great pose for stretching your abdominal muscles. Start by lying flat on your stomach, with your palms on the floor. Keeping your arms straight, you then lift your upper body so that your eyes are looking directly ahead and hold the position for 10-20 seconds. As you hold this pose, your upper thighs and abdomen should be a few inches off the floor.
The Boat Pose
From lying on your front, you now lie on your back with your arms by your sides. Lift your upper body slowly, at the same time as you lift both your legs upwards. When you reach the point where your body is forming a V-shape, hold your arms out straight and grasp your legs with each hand. Hold the position for up to 20 seconds.
The Bridge Pose
This is another pose where you start by lying flat on your back. For the starting position, you should also have your feet flat on the floor and your knees bent. You begin by raising your lower back upwards slightly so that your lower back and hips are off the floor. Place your hands beneath your hips and interlock the fingers of each hand together so they hold your hands together.
Next, raise your thighs, backside, abdomen, and back upwards, and once you have reached the maximum height, you can unlock your fingers, and lower yourself down. Repeat several times.
The Chair Pose
This is one of the simplest and well-known yoga poses, but that does not mean it is any less effective. In effect, it is a held squat and works several muscles, especially in your legs. You start by standing upright and then raise each arm straight up above your head with your hands shoulder width apart.
Keeping your back as straight as can, you then lower your backside as far as you can by bending your knees. Your final body position should be akin to you sitting on a chair, thus the name of the pose. When you reach the squat position, hold it for up to 15 seconds and repeat.
The Triangle Pose
This pose stretches muscles in several areas including your arms, legs, and your waist. To begin this pose, stand upright, with your feet body’s width apart. Place your arms by your sides.
Starting with your left arm, bend to the side and stretch to try to reach your left foot so you can touch it with your left hand. When you have stretched as far as you can, hold this position for up to 20 seconds. Now stand upright again, and the repeat the movement and stretch, but this time to your right side, and try to touch your right foot.
Hopefully, our descriptions of these yoga poses has helped, but if you would like to actually see yoga poses and more, then you should check out Yoga Burn Challenge. It contains a video program of yoga instructions easy for you to follow to help you meet your weight loss goals.