Want to reduce weight naturally? Looking to discover a healthier and more beautiful you? Here, the answer is YOGA. Yes, yoga helps you meet the best of both worlds – meditation and fitness. Yoga is considered effective and works extremely well with a long term approach to weight loss.
In this post, we have featured 12 noted and celebrity yoga expert’s opinions and suggestions we received on an expert roundup. Here they will help you get immediate answers about how does yoga work for weight loss and how you can shed extra pounds and unlock your inner beauty!! – Android app available here – Yoga for Weight Loss.
1) Liya Volova
So, what I usually recommend my yoga students for weight loss?
#1. Build your yoga practice by alternating dynamic series of asanas with static postures. This will help lose weight faster. Surya Namaskar (Sun Salutation) can be used as dynamic sequence especially if you add other asanas to it (Warrior poses I, II and III, Triangle pose, twisting, exercises into a lunge, etc.). After 6-8 rounds of Surya Namaskar keep some static asana for at least 1 minute. Static asana needs time to warm up the deep-lying muscle fibers, disperse the oxygen-riched blood so that it reaches tissues the most remoted from the surface of the body and boost metabolism, along the way help to burn fat effectively.
#2. Control your breathing synchronizing every movement with inhalation or exhalation. Deep breath livens up your prana, speeds up all the processes in your body. The blood enriches with fresh oxygen and activates burning excess calories. Start with diaphragmatic breathing with belly. Then involve chest and clavicular parts of breathing apparatus. The so-called full yogic breath is the foundation of all breathing exercises. Gradually add to your yoga practice active breathing techniques (Kapalabhati ptanayama, Bhastrika, etc.).
#3. One of the essential postures in my yoga sequences for slimming is Plank pose. This asana is an excellent training for all the muscles of the body. Do it regularly and it will help to make your waist narrow, strengthen the lower back, tighten the muscles of the back, buttocks and anterior thighs. But you should practice Plank pose carefully and correctly.
Remember: all the muscles of your belly, legs and buttocks are always active in this asana; the shoulder blades are flat and pressed to the spine, shoulders are away from the ears. Your body is stretched from head to toes. Feel the center of your body and strength of your abdominal muscles. Do not let your hips sag down; do not relax your knees. Do not bring the weight of your body forward on the hands or forearms. Do not tilt your head down and chin off the chest. Try to keep your feet together or as close as possible. The broader position of toes, the less stress on the abdominals. Hold the pose 30 to 90 seconds. Repeat some times during your yoga practice.
2) Beth Bongar aka Laughing Diva
Stress is an important factor in weight gain and loss. The more stressed you are, the more cortisol hormone your body will produce. Cortisol is associated with overeating, craving high-calorie fatty and sugary foods, and deep abdominal fat. Considering the importance of reducing stress as part of an overall lifestyle strategy, here are three yoga tips for weight loss!
#1. Use the breath. Yogic movements are based on pranayama, or breath work. My class uses the breath of “ha,” based on laughter, to really lower your stress levels! Deep breathing and laughter have been shown to increase relaxation, lower blood pressure, release endorphins, and increase stress management skills. The more you breathe during yoga, the more you will feel the benefits in your life, and lower the stress hormones causing you to feel anxiety and especially causing you to overeat. Be happy, and weight loss is easier.
#2. Use the legs. Yoga should raise your heartrate, and especially if you use the large muscle groups in your legs to move. Poses like warrior 1 and 2 are very effective at engaging the quadriceps, hamstrings, and gluteus muscles, to elevate heart rate and burn more calories. The more you use your legs, for jumping, dancing, or balancing, the more calories you’ll burn.
#3. Laugh. As a laughter yoga instructor, I know the importance of releasing stress through laughter. And as we all know, laughing tightens the abdominal muscles! You can laugh your way to toned abs, burn calories, and lower stress by using laughter yoga exercises. William F. Fry, associate professor emeritus of clinical psychiatry at Stanford University, says “a belly laugh is internal jogging.” He says laughing involves “a great deal of physical exercise and muscular behavior” — 15 facial muscles plus dozens of others all over your body that flex and relax. Your heart rate increases, oxygenating the blood.”Laughing 100 to 200 times per day is the cardiovascular equivalent of rowing for 10 minutes,” he estimates. Other studies have found that laughter bolsters the immune system, regulates abnormal heartbeat related to stress, improves the respiratory system and relaxes muscle tension.
So in summary, breathe, use those strong legs, and laugh! You will be sure to soon feel the benefits as you relax more, lower stress, lower overeating, burn calories, and bring more peace and joy into your life, with the practice of yoga.
3) Radhika Khanna
These 3 Asanas are easy to do and keeps you slim and also (happy and charming).
* Savasana (Corpse pose) – It prepares you for other asanas as it gives your body a chance to return to normal, 1 minute.
#1. Kapalbhati (frontal brain purification) it helps in losing belly fat and also works as a facial for face glow. It gives stamina for the next asana, Surya Namaskar Start by practising three rounds of twenty pumpings) – 2-3 MINUTES
* Savasana – (Corpse pose) – 1 MINUTE
#2. Surya Namaskar ( Sun salutation) it keeps the body lubricated as well as works as cardio as you do it faster, start by practising four rounds and gradually build up to twelve rounds)- 5-6 MINUTES
* Savasana – (Corpse pose) – 1 MINUTE
#3. Uttanpadasana (Leg Raises) it helps in building abdominal strength as well as losing calories) – 2- 3 MINUTES
* FINAL RELAXATION Savasana – (Corpse pose) 2 MINUTES
The above can be done in 15-20 minutes every day, empty stomach.
4) Dashama Konah
#1. Meditation – when you meditate, you often realize that you are not hungry but actually you are thirsty and trying to fill a void from boredom, depression or other negative emotion with food. So this will help you to eat only when you are actually hungry.
#2. Mindfulness – being mindful means practicing awareness about all of your actions. This is an important aspect of weight loss, because you will not eat too much or eat when you are not hungry and you will not eat the foods you know are not good for your body, if you are truly practicing mindfulness. This alone can help you lose weight.
#3. Breathing – if you find yourself craving foods or reaching for foods in between meals, stop and take 10 breaths. This conscious habit will likely shift you away from the food and toward what your body truly craves, which may a hug, some hydration or a long walk be outside to refresh your energy.
5) Amy Reich
#1. Start with deep breathing which is a key part of a yoga practice. Yes that’s it. Practice sitting still, eyes closed, taking long deep breaths in and out of the nose. Aim for a 10 count inhale, 10 count hold, and 10 count exhale. Practice for 3 -7 minutes throughout the day and to intercept a craving!
#2. Sun salutations warm the body and gets energy flowing. This is a super mood changer. Change your mood, shift your attitude and love your body AS IT IS now, not as it was or as you think it should be.
#3. Abdominal work improves posture and helps you to “get unstuck”. Bring aliveness into this area, stand tall, feel your feelings and get unstuck in body and mind. Improved posture can help you to look leaner and feel more open. If you have belly fat, try practicing yoga with you abs bare and exposed. Feel your belly with your hands, feel the air on your belly, let go of negative self-talk. Move into feeling.
6) Jen Johnson
#1. Practice mindfulness meditation. Mindfulness is awareness of the present moment without judgment. Through practicing mindfulness, we become aware of our habitual patterns of feelings, thoughts, and behaviors that lead to weight gain. Additionally, practicing mindfulness meditation has been shown to increase willpower and self-compassion.
#2. Practice self-compassion. People who practice self-compassion achieve their goals more easily than people who are self-critical.
#3. Create clear intentions related to why you would like to lose weight. Post reminders of your intentions where you can see them throughout the day. Then create a clear plan for achieving your intentions. When you veer off course from your plan, forgive yourself and make a choice to get right back on the plan.
7) Elena Brower
#1. Moving with breath from all fours back to child’s pose. This will introduce the breathing as it relates to movement, and for weight loss, this is a wonderful starting point to become accustomed to the power and depth of the breath. Infusing your cells with life-giving oxygen begins to change the pH of the cells, which in turn begin to crave more alkalinity and less of the acidity (a by-product of eating fatty and sweet foods).
As practice continues over time, this movement will become a very nourishing home base for you (and a way to physically honour yourself and now to yourself) as you continue to lose weight.
#2. All fours to downward facing dog; a great second stop. Return to all fours. Lift your seat up into dog with your knees bent halfway in order to ensure all toes are on the floor, and the ball of the foot is down, heels up.
Reach your index finger knuckles down for stability, turn armpits toward the heart for flexibility. Maintain that stability in your hands and move the weight in your hands up and back to your legs and feet. This will strengthen your legs as well as your arms and prepare your body for other activity such as cardio, which I strongly recommend as a complement to yoga to ensure weight loss.
#3. Lunges near the wall. From down dog, step right foot forward between hands (carry it forward if needed) and count 5 breaths there. Picture when you inhale that you’re rooting down into your feet, and when you exhale, you’re lifting your heart. This will keep you connected to internal strength and length, which will help you locate your spinal muscles over time.
Switch legs for 5 breaths on the left side, same breathing. Return to dog and then back to all fours, then back to child’s pose to end.
#4. Savasana – If you do more than 10 minutes of asana practice, care for yourself with a little rest. It’s important for metabolic function, organ function, and to balance emotional states that often coincide with disordered eating.
#5. Meditation – A few minutes of sitting still and breathing helps recalibrate your nervous system, and gets your brain to shift from the “fight or flight” to “stay and play” (as my teacher Thom Knoles says). Meditation also helps you to see when you eat for the wrong reasons and will help you to stay on track with your daily goals to eat well, stay grounded, feel nourished, and heal emotionally.
8) Zefea Samson-Drost
#1. We don’t get unhealthy overnight. Throughout our lives we build habits and patterns. No matter what anybody else may tell you, quick fixes don’t exist. Evaluate everything you do in your live and determine what really serves you. Instead of trying to find the perfect diet, see what changes you can make in your daily patterns. Those patterns don’t limit to what food we eat. Look at everything that you consume, physically and emotionally. When you start making changes, be realistic. There is nothing more frustrating than disappointing yourself. Instead of telling yourself that you need to be two sizes down next month, see if there is one unhealthy habit that you can replace with a good one today. Make commitments that are simple, manageable, time-bound and testable. Maybe you can substitute the car by walking once or twice a week. Instead of a double moccachino, treat yourself to a yoga class. Whatever you choose to change, make sure you can stick to it!
#2. Get rid of your scale! Change can only happen if you truly accept yourself, your Self, just the way you are right now. Your body is your temple. Treat it with love and respect. Forgive yourself for any stress and pressure you have put on yourself in the past and replace thoughts of guilt with compassion. After all, true health and happiness is not measured in pounds or kilos but in the degree that you are able to run and play around with your (grand) kids, to have enough energy to hike, garden, dance, and laugh and to do everything else that you truly love.
#3. Food for most people has become so much more than nutrition. We use food for comfort and it’s a way to connect with other people. Because of this, the importance of taste and atmosphere has replaced our connection with the food itself. Make an effort to bring mindfulness back in your eating habits. Give your full attention to what you eat and how you eat it. Choose fresh, whole and unprocessed life food (if it comes in a can and doesn’t expire, don’t eat it!). Chew carefully and mindfully and enjoy pure and natural flavors!
9) Lauri Meizler
#1. Squat daily bc if you don’t practice squatting, you’ll lose it in older age
#2. Sun saluation A bc you move every joint in your body
#3. Dancers pose bc we all need to remember that life is about balance
10) Donna Davidge
#1. Yoga breathing helps emotions that may cause you to over eat come under control, left nostril calms impulses.
#2. Shoulder stand is super for thyroid, which regulates your metabolism.
#3. Down dog strengthens all major muscle groups- more muscle in the body burns more calories to maintain.
11) Gillian B
My favorite poses for weight loss are:
#1. Boat Pose
#2. Side plank
#3. Sun salutes b
12) Heidi Kristoffer
#1. Inversions (ex. shoulder stand)
#2. Twists (ex. chair twist)
#3. Back Bends (wheel)