Posted on February 15 2021
Most seasoned yogis will tell you that yoga is so much more than just a workout. Yoga is 5,000-year-old practice that combines mindful movement, meditation & breathwork to support you in cultivating mind & body connection. But can yoga actually help you lose weight?
The short answer is yes, yoga can absolutely help you lose weight! Although yoga is known for its slow-moving speed and long holding postures, don’t be so quick to assume it’s easy. Holding certain postures for extended period of time can not only activate & strengthen the major muscle groups in your body, but also help increase stamina, flexibility and endurance.
Yoga has a number of other benefits that aid with weight loss as well including reducing stress, improving your mindset, helping you get better sleep and developing self-love. However, if shedding pounds is your overall goal, there are many different factors you will need to consider in order to lose weight through practicing yoga.
One of those factors is the type of yoga that you choose to practice. There is a common misconception that yoga is just gentle stretching and doesn’t include any strength training components. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Today, there are over 10 different styles of yoga that are taught around the world. Certain types of yoga such as yin or restorative yoga are great for stretching, relaxing and creating a strong sense of inner peace. But if you’re looking to lose weight, you might want to try a more cardio or strength training focused class such as vinyasa yoga, hot yoga, power variations or yoga sculpt. By choosing a more active type of yoga, you are more likely to develop muscle, burn calories and work up a sweat!
Another factor you will need to consider is how often you practice. If you are only practicing once or twice a week, you are less likely to see any major changes in your weight - especially in a short period of time. The more you practice, the quicker you will start to see results. Aim to practice for at least one hour, three to five times per week. It’s also recommended to switch up your yoga routine every few days to work different muscles and also include resting recovery days to give your muscles a chance to rest and repair. Consistency is key!
Know that losing weight with yoga should be a long-term goal and, like most things in life, you shouldn’t expect to see results overnight. Remember that weight loss is also influenced by your mindset, eating habits and overall healthy lifestyle choices. While a lot of people originally roll out their mats to lose weight, they often discover that yoga helps them with so much more. Don’t be surprised if you end your practice with less weight and a whole new outlook on life!
Stephanie Morgyn is a certified holistic health & mindfulness coach, wellness blogger, yoga instructor, freelance writer, speaker and entrepreneur from Chicago! Her goal is to help women find calm and positivity in their hectic lives, cultivate mindfulness, and live with passion, authenticity & purpose. Visit her website at www.StephanieMorgyn.com for more information on her upcoming mindfulness courses, blogs and more!