Losing weight is a gradual process. It is a balance between exercise and the right diet. Yoga is extremely beneficial to lose weight, gain strength and tone your muscles. Out of various asanas, there are a few that help target particular areas of your body. You can do these asanas to strengthen your body and tone up your muscles.
Yoga is not just for weight loss or gaining stamina, it is a way of life. Doing yoga as a part of your workout routine will help you lose weight. Different Asanas are effective in weight loss for facial fat, arms, calf muscles, thighs, shoulder and upper arms etc. Given Below are the Top 6 Yoga Poses for Weight Loss.
1. Boat Pose – Paripurna Navasana
Full boat pose works as a strengthener for hip flexors, spine, and abdominal. It helps relieve stress and improves digestion. The pose also helps tones arms and leg muscles. Women should avoid doing this pose during pregnancy and the first two days of menstrual cycle.
- Sit on the floor with your legs in front of you. Press your hands on the floor behind the hips.
- Lean back slightly and lengthen your torso. Make sure your back doesn’t round while doing so.
- Exhale and bend your knees, then lift your feet off the floor at 45 degree.
- Give your tailbone a stretch and try to lift your pubis towards your navel.
- Stretch your arms alongside the legs. They should be parallel to each other and even the floor.
- While your hips are firm on the ground, try to lift the top of the sternum.
- Stay in the pose for 10 -20 seconds.
- Exhale and sit upright in the original position.
2. Four-Limbed Staff Pose – Chaturanga Dandasana
Video credit: yogaglo
This pose requires you to stay off the ground by supporting your body on your hands and providing support to your core. This pose helps tone your arms and strengthens and tones your biceps and triceps. It also strengthens lower back muscles.
- Form your shoulder blades against your back and press your tailbone towards pubis – plank pose.
- Exhale slowly and lower your torso and legs to just a few inches above the floor.
- Have a 90 degree bend in the elbows and keep the shoulders at the same height as the elbows.
- Breathe in and hold for 1 -4 breaths.
- Inhale up to plank pose and exhale all the way down.
3. Warrior II Pose – Virbhadrasana II
Video credit: NBC NEWS
Warrior II pose is great for weight loss and overall flexibility. It strengthens the legs and opens up chest and hips. You can develop concentration and balance with this pose. It also improves circulation and energizes the entire body.
- Stand with your feet apart at hip-distance and arms at side.
- Now slowly turn the right toes towards right and bend the right knee directly over the right ankle and take your left foot out 90 degrees.
- Turn the hips and the shoulders towards the front and reach out through the finger tips, reaching towards the side walls. Turn and look at the right middle finger.
- Exhale and bend your front knee. Your knee should be aligned on top of your ankle of the front foot.
- Press into the feet, keeping the legs strong. Sink the hips down towards the floor, and reach the crown of the head up to lengthen the spine.
- Inhale and hold your breath for 3 -6 seconds.
- Gently straighten the legs and come back to original position.
4. Fish Pose – Matsyasana
Video credit: VENTUNO YOGA
Doing the fish pose involves stretching of your lower body organs – hips, thighs, and abdominal muscles. This asana involves pulling and twisting, and all the asanas involving pulling and twisting help in burning extra fat from tummy and thighs.
- Lie on your back with your hands at the side and feet joined together.
- Place your hands under your hips. Bring the elbows close together.
- Breathing in, lift your head and chest.
- Keep your chest elevated, slowly lower your head backwards and touch the top of your head to the floor.
- With your head lightly touching the floor, press the elbows firmly into the ground, placing the weight on the elbow and not on the head.
- Lift your chest up from in-between the shoulder blades. Press the thighs and legs to the floor.
- Hold the pose for as long as you are comfortable.
- Now lift the head, lowering the chest and head to the floor. Bring the hands along the sides and relax.
5. Cobra Pose – Bhujangasana
Bhujangasana is an integral part of the mighty Surya Namaskar. This particular asana works on your upper body. It provides the abdominal muscles a deep rooted stretch. It also acts as a catalyst for burning unwanted belly fat.
- Lie on your stomach with your toes flat on the ground. Keep your legs close together, with your feet lightly touching each other.
- Place both your hands on the floor. Your palms should be placed slightly to the front at your shoulder level. Spread your fingers and keep your elbows close to the body, instead of spreading them wide apart.
- Pull your shoulder back slightly.
- Inhale deeply, slowly lift your head, chest and abdomen while keeping your navel touching the floor. Make sure you don’t raise your hips off the ground.
- Keep your hands, hips, and feet firmly planted on the floor and slightly lift your torso.
- Tilt your chip upwards and lift your chest towards the ceiling.
- Focus on breathing and if possible straighten your arms by arching the back.
- Keep your shoulders relaxed and feet together.
- Stay in the pose for a few seconds and then relax.
6. Garland Pose – Malasana
Video credit: Yoga With Adriene
Garland pose, or malasana counters the effects of sitting all day and accumulating fat in the lower part of the body. It helps improves flexibility and tones inner and outer thigh muscles. Avoid doing this asana if you suffer from knee or hip pain.
- Begin by squatting. While doing so keep your feet close to each other with your heels firmly supported on the ground.
- Separate your thighs in a way that they are slightly wider than your torso.
- Drop your torso forward and place your arms on the inside of your knees. Press your elbows on the inside of the knees.
- Bring your palms in Anjali Mudra, in prayer position.
- Lift your torso, giving it a stretch. Keep your spine straight and shoulders relaxed.
- Shift your weight to the heels.
- Hold the pose for 5 breaths. To release slowly straighten your legs and come back to standing position.
It is important to remember that none of these poses will magically work overnight. You need to be consistent with your workout routine and healthy eating to notice a change in your body. Hope these poses are helpful in your weight loss journey.