Samiksha Shetty is a Mumbai-based celebrity fitness instructor, a mental health advocate, and a lawyer.
What gets a particular body to lose weight? Is it a high-intensity calorie burn or are there some underlying factors we are unaware off? Well, while different things work for different people, I’m here today to tell you why placing your bets on yoga for weight loss can give you the ultimate win.
So let’s get acquainted with some benefits of yoga shall we?
Yoga reduces stress through regular practice of pranayama and meditation.
Regular practice helps achieve good sleeping patterns, thus reducing cortisol levels.
A good yoga practice will help you to eat clean by bringing more awareness and mindfulness into your daily life. It also helps manage emotional eating.
Yoga stretches, strengthens, and tones the entire body.
Yoga helps increase stamina and lung capacity.
Yoga helps burn calories, especially in ashtanga and vinyasa yoga.
Helps detoxify and cleanse the body and mind.
Now that we’ve got that out of the way, here are 5 asanas in this session on yoga for weight loss that promise to burn fat:
1. Downward-facing dog or adho-mukha svanasana I’m sure you’ve heard of this one. This Asana helps unwind the entire body. It strengthens and tones the arms and shoulders, back, calves and hamstrings, lengthens the spine, and energises the entire body by bringing blood flow to your brain.
Start on the floor by placing your hands and knees down. Keep your hands shoulder distance apart and knees hip width apart.
Now, straighten your legs by lifting your knees off the floor and push your heels down as far as they can go. Extend the spine by pushing away from the ground using your palms
Engage the entire body and pull in the belly. Stay here for 5 to 9 breaths.
2. Lizard pose or utthan pristhasana By embodying the spirit of the lizard we can strengthen our shoulder muscle, arms, chest and work on our glutes. Because who doesn’t want a good booty? By bringing awareness into this pose, we can also engage and strengthen the abdominal muscles and reduces excess fat around the belly and the hips.
Start by getting into downward facing dog.
Inhale, step your right foot forward to the outside edge of your right palm, coming into an extended lunge position.
Now sink your hip, keeping your arms straight and spine flat and lengthened. If you’re comfortable here, then slowly lower your body onto your forearms.
Press onto the ball of your left foot as you straighten up your left leg. Stay here for 30 seconds and then repeat on the other side.
3. Bow pose or dhanurasana Looking for a way to tone and strengthen your belly and back? Then this asana is your saviour. This asana also helps improve posture and stretches the entire front of the body.
Lie down on the floor, flat on your stomach. Lengthen your abdomen using your hands. Bend your legs from the knee keeping it hip-width apart.
Extend your hands behind and grab your ankles from the outside. Right hand grabbing the right ankle and the left hand grabbing the left ankle.
If this is comfortable so far then try lifting your head and torso on an inhale and down on an exhale.
4. Twisted triangle pose or parivrtta trikonasana This standing, deep-twisting yoga asana stretches the whole body. It compresses and massages your digestive organs, while challenging your balance and focus.
Twisting your torso massages your internal organs, which tones them and helps detoxify the body. Cleansing and toning these internal organs also improves metabolism.
Start by standing upright and spread your feet 3 to 4 feet apart.
Turn your right foot to the right and left foot 45 degrees inwards. Now, turn your entire body facing the right side.
Inhale and lengthen the spine upwards and exhale. Twist to the right, take your left hand and place it next to the right foot or against the right chin.
Extend the right hand straight up without over-extending your hand.
With every exhale, try to twist a little more. Stay here for five to nine breaths and then repeat on the left side.
5. Bridge pose or setu bandhasana This asana is brilliant for strengthening the back, thighs, shoulders, and glutes. It helps with reproduction issues and helps improve lung capacity.
Start by lying down on the mat on your back. Bend your legs from the knees and place your feet hip-width apart.
Inhale and lift your hips up towards the ceiling while pushing into your feet. Exhale slowly with control and drop the hips back onto the floor. Repeat this movement for 10 times.