Yoga is one of the best things you can do to improve your physical and mental wellness.
It offers increased flexibility, greater peace of mind, and stronger muscles.
What many people do not realize is that yoga can also be a great way to lose weight.
How Yoga Burns Calories
Yoga burns calories in two ways.
First, the act of moving your body through the poses.
As you move through the asanas, or yoga poses, you engage your muscles and expend energy in the process.
Most people do not think of yoga when they are considering aerobic exercise.
It is true that yoga does not burn as many calories per hour as swimming, running, or skiing. But high-intensity yoga classes can burn upwards of hundreds of calories per hour.
For instance, according to this Harvard post 30 minutes of Yoga can burn off 149 calories or more.
When done daily over the course of a year, this could lead to you losing a lot of weight.
This number could be even greater if you incorporate other lifestyle changes such as healthier eating or going for a run as well.
The second way that yoga burns calories is through building muscle.
Muscle burns more calories than fat. People with more muscle need to eat more because they burn more calories. They lose weight more quickly when they do not increase their caloric intake.
People with more muscle mass also appear leaner and more toned. If you are hoping to achieve a more fit and athletic look, yoga can help you achieve it.
If you have done yoga before, you have likely noticed that many of the poses require considerable strength. This is especially true of inversions and many of the more advanced yoga poses.
These poses build muscle, which in turn helps your body burn more calories as you go about your daily life.
Types of Yoga for Losing Weight
When it comes to burning calories, not all types of yoga are equal.
More active styles of yoga are best for burning calories.
Power yoga, Iyengar yoga, and vinyasa yoga are all types of yoga that move quickly through the poses. This means more movement, greater use of your muscles, and greater calories burned.
Hot yoga is another type that has become more popular in recent years, and with good reason. This article by Colorado state university says that women can burn upto 330 calories in one session of hot yoga!
In most types of heated yoga, the studio is heated to a temperature of 32 degrees Celsius. This increases the number of calories burned per hour.
Doing yoga in a hot room also keeps your muscles loose and relaxed, allowing for greater range of motion. This can increase your ability to engage in all the poses in a safe manner.
Bikram yoga is the most common type of hot yoga, though other types of yoga may be done in a heated room as well.
Yoga Helps Develop Mental Discipline
Choosing a type of yoga that will help you burn fat and tone up is a matter of knowing yourself. If you need to sharpen your focus on your weight loss goal, a slower more meditative practice may be best.
It is common to hear people say that the mental benefits of yoga practice outweigh the physical. One yoga study showed that just 20 minutes of yoga helps to immedietely stimulate brain function.
As one example, stress eating is a common cause of unwanted weight gain.
If you tend to eat unhealthy foods to excess when you are stressed out with work or school, a contemplative yoga practice may help.
Yoga can help you relax, relieve stress, and reduce anxiety.
These factors can all promote healthful eating behavior and increased motivation to exercise.
Some slower styles of yoga that can help quiet your mind include hatha yoga, kundalini yoga, and yin yoga.
These practices emphasize deep breathing, staying in the moment, and self-acceptance.
For a healthier body and mind, yoga is the perfect activity.
To lose weight, it is important to choose the correct type of yoga for your needs, develop mental discipline, and focus on ganing muscle and burning calories.
Through a carefully planned yoga routine, losing fat and gaining a leaner, healthier body is possible.