Have you noticed the yoga craze? You can find people doing yoga in the parks, gardens, terraces and at home.
Yoga – a mind and body practice that combines physical postures and breathing, meditation and/or relaxation techniques – can help you stay both physically and mentally healthy.
While most people do not consider yoga to be a high-intensity workout, you may be surprised to learn that many yoga poses burn a substantial number of calories. Thus, people who are overweight or obese can greatly benefit from doing yoga.
There are many types of yoga poses that can help you burn the most calories and fat by providing strength, flexibility, balance and endurance exercises. And when you burn calories, you’ll start losing weight and get a toned-up body.
Here are some of the best yoga poses to burn the most calories.
1. Chair or Utkatasana Pose
The Chair Pose involves the use of the gluteus, the largest muscles in your body. Hence, it aids in burning a good amount of calories.
Also, this yoga pose generates heat in the body that helps boost your metabolism.
It is an extremely easy pose that can be performed by anyone.
- Stand up straight with your feet about hip-width apart.
- With an inhale, raise your arms above your head.
- Exhale and fold your body forward at your hips to form a 45-degree angle.
- Keep your knees slightly bent, as if you are about to sit in a chair.
- Look straight out in front of you and hold the position for 30 to 60 seconds, taking deep breaths.
- Inhale and straighten your knees and stand up.
- Exhale and release your arms to your sides.
- Do it 10 to 15 times to complete a cycle.
Caution: Do not practice the Chair Pose if you are having headaches, low blood pressure or insomnia.
2. Plank or Kumbhakasana Pose
The Plank is one of the best yoga poses for burning the most calories.
It engages all of your body’s muscles and especially helps to tone the abdominal muscles. It strengthens the arms, wrists and shoulders. Plus, as it strengthens the muscles surrounding the spine, it plays a key role in improving posture.
The Plank is an essential part of Sun Salutations, but it can also be practiced on its own to build strength and stamina.
The Plank Pose has different variations. For beginners, the Plank can be done in the following manner:
- Get on your hands and knees.
- Slowly raise your upper body, putting your weight on your forearms and knees.
- Lift your knees, shifting your weight to your toes so that your body forms a straight line.
- Inhale and hold this position for 30 to 60 seconds.
- Exhale and lower your knees to the floor.
- Finally, return to the starting position.
- Repeat once daily.
Caution: This yoga pose is not recommended for those who have high blood pressure, carpal tunnel syndrome or osteoporosis. Also do not practice it when you have any injury in the arms of legs.
3. Four-Limbed Staff or Chaturanga Dandasana Pose
This yoga pose is very similar to the lower portion of a push-up and helps build strength and stability.
It provides a nice workout for all the major muscles, and helps burn a good amount of calories and tone up your body.
The Four-Limbed Staff Pose is not an easy one. You may need to practice a lot to master this pose.
- Get into a push-up position.
- Spread your fingers wide apart, with the middle finger pointing forward.
- Press into your palms, keeping the arms as straight as possible.
- Tuck in your tailbone, so that your legs, hips and torso form a straight line.
- Press the crown of your head forward and keeping the toes tucked, press the heels back.
- Exhale and keep your body in a straight line as you lower down toward the floor, holding the position 4 to 6 inches above the floor.
- Bend your elbows at a 90-degree angle and keep the shoulders at the same height as the elbows.
- Hold this position for 1 to 4 breaths.
- To release, you can either inhale up to a Plank Pose or exhale all the way down to the floor.
Caution: This pose is not recommended for those suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome.