By Heath Jackson
I recently attended a class focused on yoga exercises for weight loss. This was a Bikram style class combining classic yoga asanas with a heated workout space. The floor area maintains a constant temperature of 104 degrees. This workout approach is a good methodology to follow for those seeking a fitness routine based around yoga. Whether following a Bikram specific routine or other yoga discipline the following conditions are ideal as part of any weight loss program:
A heated workout area provides immediate benefits when exercising as your body can warm up quickly. This minimizes the chance of injury and allows you to put your body into deeper poses. Yoga exercises for weight loss involve a strenuous and active workout and a heated practice area provides increased gains in flexibility and muscle development.
Although not immediately noticeable to the practitioner, the increased heat profile of the practice space provides a constant flow of oxygenated blood throughout a person’s body. This is because it is easier to get into a deeper stretch when doing a pose. This has a positive effect on contracting the muscles more completely and the result is a more pronounced flow of blood throughout the body. That has the effect of carrying more oxygen and allows you to perform at a higher, more aerobic level. In layman’s terms you can push yourself harder and you will see a weight loss benefit.
One of the key things to look for in utilizing yoga exercises for weight loss is how constant the workout routine is. The class I participated in was led by an instructor that moved from pose to pose, relatively constantly. A yoga pose was shown, practiced by the class and then repeated – usually 3 times. Once completed the instructor moved the class to the next pose with very short breaks occurring only every 20 to 30 minutes. This had a fairly aerobic effect simply due to the pace being practiced.
Maximum Workout with Minimal Impact
Certainly a complete and very active workout occurs using this type of exercise routine. But perhaps the greatest benefit is the minimal impact to the body’s joints, ligaments and tendons. This workout, while very aerobic, did not add unneeded stress or pressure to these critical parts of the body.
I cross train regularly practicing different yoga postures with other physical fitness activities. The positive benefits described here occurred due to the fact that this was a strenuous and active workout approach. Embrace the right yoga exercises for weight loss, increased flexibility, and muscle strengthening as they play an important role in an overall fitness regimen.
Heath Jackson writes about health, wellness and living a natural life. Learn more about his approaches to sensible dieting and weight loss at yoga asanas for weight loss or Click Here for information, tips and ideas on how to incorporate yoga into your weight loss exercise routine.