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Yoga Poses for Weight Loss

Weight loss exercises are always on our mind. What is the newest way to lose those pounds? Yoga for weight loss! Yoga is a brilliant exercise activity that not only helps you with weight loss but improves your flexibility, builds strength and many more yoga benefits are still being discovered. In the beginning, yoga for beginners teaches you to focus on your mind, body and soul, but this in turn has positive effects on your weight.

With all the different types of yoga to choose from, it can be daunting trying to figure out which one will give you the best results. Don’t be worried if you feel the need to use yoga equipment and props at first to help with the yoga poses. Practice makes perfect, we suggest you read through the different yoga styles and positions, test them and see what works best for you. Bikram yoga and ashtanga vinyasa yoga are recommendable due to their quicker pace and higher energy sessions.

Check out our yoga vs pilates debate for more information.

Yoga Poses to Help Lose Weight

Our suggested yoga poses for weight loss will be sure to get you working up a sweat! As yoga is an activity that targets muscles and tissues, you might need to stick at it for a little while before seeing results. Give these yoga exercises a go:

  • Boat: sitting on a mat, raise your legs straight up and lean back to create a “V” shape with your body, hols your arms out straight and at shoulder height
  • Locust: lying on your front, inhale lifting your legs up and keeping them straight, raise your chest and head with your arms going backwards and palms up, you should feel a stretch in the abdominals and a slight lift
  • Warrior 3: standing and balancing on one leg, raise your other leg backwards so it is straight, bend forward spreading your arms out and face the floor, your body should be in a straight line except for your balancing leg and arms out
  • Temple: standing on the mat, bring your feet apart with your toes turned out as far as is comfortable, bend down slightly with your knees facing outwards, inhale and interlock your hands raising them above your head with palms facing the sky, exhale
  • Cow Face Twist: sitting on the floor, bring one leg over the other bending the knee and facing your toes behind you, bend the leg underneath also facing your toes behind you, place the contrary hand to the top leg to rest on your knee and turn to the side

For further help, view the video below showing yoga exercises for weight loss:

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Types of Yoga

Yoga is more than just the first image that comes to our mind of a meditating, crossed-legged person with hands in the prayer position. The different types of yoga available is so vast that we are still yet to discover some! In the history of yoga, the purposes, positions and places of practice has changed and is still contantly being changed and updates. We have moved on from the days where yoga consisted of one position, sitting under a tree and meditating for hours on end.

The yoga benefits is one of the reasons why it has become such a popular phenomenon today and the reason why thousands of people everyday decide to take up this relaxing yet health-conscious activity. Each yoga asana comes with its own specific benefits as the yoga poses aim to target parts of the body, mind and soul. Starting off with yoga for beginners is great, take a look below and what yoga has to offer you.

Different Types of YogaDifferent Yoga Types

With all the different yoga varieties out there, it can be daunting on choosing which one is right for you, or even understanding the difference between them! This quick guide gives you the basics you need to know to be able to differentiate between the types of yoga. Each yoga type has specific requirements and individual poses and benefits:

  • Bikram Yoga: a series of 26 yoga poses repeated twice in a room of 95-105 °F and 40% humidity, great for weight loss and stamina
  • Hatha Yoga: the basis of all yoga, teaches basic yoga poses and breathing, incorporates all yoga positions
  • Kundalini Yoga: involves working on the spine and pushing energy towards your upper body, can also include chanting and meditation, energizer yoga boosting your feeling of energy
  • Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga: ancient style of yoga that synchronizes postures and breathing, ashtanga includes a concrete set of poses while vinyasa is more spontaneous, good for weight loss, cardio and strength
  • Iyengar Yoga: focuses on body alignment, using yoga equipment and holding poses for longer, helps when recovering from injuries or muscle definition
  • Yin Yoga: passive form of yoga especially good for your joints, poses are held for extremely long periods for meditation and to stimulate deeper tissues
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Bikram Yoga

Bikram yoga is possibly one of the most popular types of yoga that you can find. With increasing studios and gyms including bikram yoga classes in their schedules, many people look towards yoga for their daily dose of exercise. Different yoga styles offer you different yoga asanas, also known as yoga poses, which you should try out and see which ones you enjoy best.

What is bikram yoga?

If you are doing yoga for beginners, you might be wondering what the difference is between all the different types of yoga. Bikram yoga was created by Bikram Choudhary, an Indian yoga teacher, who put together a series of 26 hatha yoga poses to be completed in a hot room of 40°C or 104°F. Every bikram yoga session will include the same yoga poses in the same order, as every bikram instructor must stick the the teachings of Bikram Choudhary, however, you will be able to find some variations.

Bikram Yoga BenefitsBikram Yoga

The yoga benefits for any style of yoga are proven to be beneficial for flexibility and building strength or endurance. With the added heat element of bikram yoga, it is suggested that sweating out your toxins is good for your skin and body in general. Not only do you have the plus of detoxification, but the sweat and body heat created from the room helps you to move easier into the bikram yoga positions. A bikram yoga workout helps you to speed up heart rate and warm up your muscles, meaning that your body is working harder.

Tips for Bikram Yoga

It is important that you are aware of the correct preparation when doing bikram yoga, whether you are a beginner or expert. Here are a few useful tips you should take into account before you start:

  • Stay hydrated as your body will produce a lot of sweat during one session.
  • Correct yoga equipment for bikram yoga will include a towel to help your grip due to the sweat.
  • Try not to eat 2-3 hours before your class, some positions can lead to feelings of nausea due to the heat, stick to a healthy diet and light snacks.
  • Avoid being self-conscious about the amount of sweating you will do and embrace the heat!

Bikram Yoga Poses

Here is a short video showing you the range of bikram yoga poses included in a bikram yoga workout: