“Yoga, an ancient Indian discipline also referred as a way of life, is known for its therapeutic properties over mind, body and soul. But do you know it can actually help in losing weight too? Let take a look at yoga for weight loss.”
A lot has been said and written about yoga in Indian Mythology; according to which the origins of Yoga date back to pre-vedic Indian traditions. Now coming back to 21st century, people across the globe are practicing Yoga these days for its several benefits over your mind, body and soul. Also, people believe that practicing yoga on a regular basis helps in leading a healthy and peaceful life. Different people talk about different benefits of yoga asanas over their mind and body, but do you know that you can rely on yoga asanas for losing weight as well?
Yoga can be a great way to lose excess weight if practiced regularly in the right form. Because yoga is light on your joints, it comes with less chances of injury, especially when performed under the guidance of an experienced trainer initially.
To begin your tryst with yoga poses for weight loss, all you need are comfortable clothes, a yoga mat and strong determination to kick those extra kilos, and you are good to go. So to help you make a kick start we bring top 5 yoga asanas to reduce belly fat.
1.Kapal Bhati Pranayam
What can be the best way of starting your yoga exercises for weight loss? Well begin with a breathing exercise of course! Kapal Bhati Pranayam is a form of breathing exercise that helps in oxygenating your body while strengthening the muscles around your abdomen and stomach. If you aim to flatten your tummy then this is the best yoga pose for you at it melts away your love handles and also improves digestion.
How To Perform Kapal Bhati Pranayam
- Sit comfortably on a yoga mat, while keeping your spine erect and your palms placed nicely on your knees facing downwards.
- Exhale through your nose and start pulling your stomach in towards your spine.
- Once you will start loosening your stomach muscles, you will automatically breathe in.
- Quickly contract your muscles again and start exhaling.
- Here your stomach muscles will be doing all the work of inhaling and exhaling.
- Do this initially about 50 times and then increase the number gradually as per your level of comfort.
Soreness around your abdomen muscles initially is quite common so don’t get worried about it. However, if you are suffering from hernia, heart disease or high blood pressure then avoid doing this pranayam.
2.Ardha Matsyendrasana – Half Spine Twist
This asana is excellent for increasing your lungs capacity so that they can inhale and hold more oxygen. As for weight loss, ardha matsyendrasana stretches your spine while toning your thighs and abdominal muscles. It also stimulates your digestive system by helping in digestion of your food more efficiently, which aids in weight loss.
How To Perform Ardha Matsyendrasana
- Sit straight with your legs stretched out in front of you. Keep your feet together and spine erect.
- Bend your left leg and place the heel of your left foot beside your right hip
- Now, put your right leg over your left knee and place your left hand on your right knee. Keep your right hand behind you.
- Twist at the waist, shoulders and neck in this sequence only towards your right and lover the right shoulder.
- Hold this position and continue with gentle and long breath ins and outs.
- To come back to the starting position, continue breathing out, release the right hand first (the hand behind you), release the waist, then chest, lastly the neck and sit up relaxed yet straight. Repeat on the other side.
If you are suffering from any kind of back or spine injury then avoid doing this pose, else perform under the guidance of a certified trainer only.
3.Kumbhakasana – Plank Pose
Kumbhakasana works excellently for strengthening and toning of your arms, shoulders, back, buttocks, thighs and abs. If performed correctly, this yoga asana for losing weight quickly provides you a complete body workout.
How To Perform Kumbhakasana
- Lie flat on your tummy on your yoga mat.
- Place your palms next to your face and start bending your feet in a way so that your toes start pushing off the ground.
- Push off your hands and raise your buttocks in the air.
- Your legs should be flat on the floor as far as possible and your neck should be loose. Once here, inhale and lower your torso so that your arms are perpendicular to the floor and your shoulders and chest are directly over your arms. Remember to keep your fingers from flaring out and keep them close together. You will feel your stomach muscles tighten. Hold this pose for as long as you can.
- To get out of this pose, exhale and gently lower your body to the floor (just like you would come out of a push up).
If you are suffering from any kind of shoulder injuries or have a problem of high blood pressure then avoid doing this pose.
4. Uttanasana – Forward Bending Pose
With this asana you can give necessary stretch to your hamstrings and also put some pressure on the muscles of your abdomen. Performing this asana correctly will help in rushing blood to your head, which helps your body in switching from the sympathetic to the parasympathetic nervous system. This also helps in relaxing your body.
How To Perform Uttanasana
- Standing straight is the first step to start performing this asana.
- Raise your hands above your head from the front while you inhale slowly.
- Now, bend forward completely while pushing your buttocks back until your palms touch the floor and your forehead touches your knees.
- Come up slowly to your standing position and repeat the asana
People suffering from any kind of back injury should avoid doing this yoga asana.
5. Vasisthasana – Sage Pose
Vasishtasana is one of the best yoga pose that helps extensively in improving flexibility along with the sense of balance. Moreover, it works on your core muscles, shoulders and arms to reduce that extra flab.
How To Perform Vasisthasana
- Lie down on your stomach while bending your elbows and placing your palms below your shoulders.
- Tuck your toes in and push them towards the floor in such a way that it will straighten your elbows so that your upper body along with your pelvis will be lifted off the floor.
- Make sure the alignment of your body is same as at the time while you were lying down.
- Slowly twist your body towards the left and you release your left hand from the floor.
- Simultaneously turn your right foot to its outer edge and stack your left foot on the right foot. Don’t let your hips or pelvis drop. Hold it in the same alignment as it was earlier
- Look up and stay in this position for five breaths
- Repeat the pose to the other side
People with wrist, elbow and shoulders injuries are advised to avoid this pose as it might aggravate their condition.
Start with these simple east to perform yoga asanas for weight loss and gradually move on to the more difficult ones. Yoga will not only reduce the extra flab from your body but also bring the necessary peace of mind required for healthy life.