Yoga is a fantastic way to improve your stress levels, stretch your body, increase flexibility and enhance your balance. Many of us don’t really think of yoga when we unroll our mats and center ourselves in Mountain Pose. However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t also benefit from yoga in terms of your weight loss. This works especially well when combined with a complete weight loss program that includes a reduced calorie, nutritious diet and possibly a quality fat burning supplement for energy.
If you really think about it, yoga can be a perfect part of an overall fitness routine for weight loss. It is, after all, a practice that helps to build a great deal of total body strength. Since muscle building is vital to maximizing your body’s metabolism, yoga can help you to burn more calories during your cardio and strength training workouts, but it can also help you to burn more while you’re idle or even asleep.
Certain yoga postures (yogasanas) can also raise your heart rate quite a bit, meaning that you can also count on a certain amount of fat burning during your workout, as well. The key is to choose the right form of yoga for the type of impact you’d like to have on your weight loss.
Consider the following types of yoga and what they might do for your weight loss:
• Bikram Yoga – This is a practice that involves continual motion for an hour and a half, bringing you through 26 poses and postures within a very specific order. This is one of the types of yoga that will certainly raise your heart rate. While the classes are heated, this is not the same thing as hot yoga. The motions, which are all performed at a quick pace, can boost your balance and flexibility but can also encourage weight loss to the same degree as a fast paced walk. If you really want to benefit from this type of yoga, you need to keep it up for a couple of months.
• Hatha Yoga – This is offered at just about every yoga studio, community center and gym where yoga classes are offered. The truth is that this isn’t actually a certain type of yoga. Instead, it’s more of an overall category of several types of yoga that are focused on the physical component as opposed to the spiritual one. Therefore, you know you will feel a difference in your body after doing this type of yoga, even if you’re not as much into the meditation component. These poses will involve both floor work and standing, but each movement won’t necessarily flow from one to the next. The version that is likely to give you the best calorie burn is usually called Power Hatha yoga as it’s focused on building your large muscle groups and core.
• Iyengar Yoga – This is another type of Hatha yoga but it doesn’t require as much movements as many of the other types. The reason is that it is focused more on the details of the asanas (postures) and on getting your pranayama (breathing) right than it is for getting as many asanas as you can. Because this is very detail oriented, it is excellent for boosting muscle strength and mental drive. It can be quite demanding and can help you to push your limits.