Yoga for Weight Loss: What you need to know to succeed (Part 1)
Using yoga for weight loss might not look effective to most people. I bet you they’ll go: “Naw, it’s just stretching…what can it possibly do to burn calories?”
Well, a lot my friend. Yoga can work for weight loss if you use it right and I’ll tell you what to do in due course.
“But how exactly can yoga work for weight loss? Just stretching that’s it!”
Boy, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard that comment.
Well for interested parties, yoga as an option for weight loss is wise, safe and effective. Remember, it is the oldest physical culture known to man and not only does this exercise work the body, it works the mind and soul as well.
Okay, here are the poses I recommend you use when using Yoga for weight loss. I will go over what I believe is the CORE of Yoga Poses.
Trust me, there have been times when I did this alone and still got the benefits that yoga gives from daily practice.
Let’s take notes:
The Sun Salutations When using Yoga for Weight Loss:
These exercises are a combination of Yoga Poses, Breathing Exercises, Sun Bathing and Prayer. They have been practiced for centuries by Yoga Practitioners in India, Martial Artists and African Wrestlers and as a system to rejuvenate the body and soul are beyond compare. It’s been said in the Drugless Healing circles that one round of the Sun Salutations is much better than a week of exercises at the gym!
They are very simple to learn and just about anyone, regardless of their fitness or flexibility levels can learn these simple exercises. In actuality, if you are familiar with “burpies” (the calisthenics exercise), they do derive their origin from the Sun Salutations.
Here are some of their benefits:
- They alleviate disorders of the skin and waist.
- Flexibility increases and breathing is corrected, moreover, they mildly exercise the legs and arms, thus increasing the circulation.
- They are the best way to burn calories and reduce weight and are often recommended for obesity and depression.
- They are an effective way of loosening up, stretching and massaging all joints and internal organs of the body.
- They stimulate and balance all the systems of the body including the endocrine, circulatory, reproductive and digestive system.
1. Stand straight with the palms together as in a prayer position.
2. Inhale and stretch the arms above the head.
3. Exhale and bend forward while touching the toes.
4. Inhale and stretch the right leg away from the body in a big backward step and keep the hands and left foot firmly on the ground. Bending the head backward the left knee should be between the hands.
5. Inhale and hold the breath. Move the left leg from the body and, keeping both feet together and the knees of the floor, rest on the hands (arms straight) and keep the body in a straight line from head to foot.
6. Exhale and lower the body to the floor. In this position, only 8 portions of the body come in contact with the floor: the two feet, two knees, two hands, chest and forehead.
7. Inhale and bend back as much as possible bending the spine to the maximum.
8. Exhale and lift the body of the floor. Keep the feet and heels on the floor.
9. Inhale and bring the right foot along the level of the hands; left foot and knee should touch the ground. Look up, bending the spine slightly (same position as #4)
10. Exhale and bring the left leg forward. Keep the knees straight and bring the head down to the knees as in the third position.
11. Raise the arms overhead and bend backward inhaling. As in Position 2.
12. Exhale and drop the arms and relax.
You have now completed one round.
Perform as many rounds as possible in multiples of 3. Ideally you want to aim for 6 rounds minimum and up to a maximum of 30. It only takes about 5-10 minutes, depending on your speed and intensity and is best practiced with as little clothing as possible before an open air window first thing in the morning.
Okay, we’ve gone over the core pose or combination thereof when using Yoga for weight loss in this part of the series of this article. I’ll go over SPECIFIC poses (asanas) that will target the trouble spots and some breathing exercises that would speed up burning up of calories. But, note, when I say use yoga for weight loss; I mean ALL its limbs: the poses, the prescribed diet for practice and mind-set. If you were doing conventional exercise for weight loss, you’d know to eat a healthier diet right?
Well the same applies to yoga for weight loss as well.
See you in part 2 of this article...