Yoga first began in India some 5000 years ago as a physical and spiritual exercise to unite mind, body, and spirit. Yoga is the old method which can be termed as union between body, mind and breath. It is performed to improve the health and well-being. By performing yoga that is asanas in the form of exercises and meditation, you can get certain benefits. Practicing yoga will not only benefit you but you will reduce weight if you are overweight.
Yoga for weight loss
How to Lose Weight with Yoga?
Yoga improves flexibility, strength, and posture. While this doesn’t do a great deal for weight loss itself, it does give you the endurance to perform more vigorous exercises longer. These exercises also help to stimulate the thyroid gland which in turn will give your metabolism a boost to keep burning more calories. Yoga also helps to relax you, thus slowing your breathing and reducing anxiety and depression. This helps to control binge eating, thus furthering your weight loss.
Yoga literally means union of individual self with the cosmic self. The path to Yoga involves various practices like Asanas (Physical postures), Kriyas (Cleansing techniques), Pranayama (Techniques for regulation of breath), and other Meditative practices. In this modern world where there is seen a rise in lifestyle induced epidemics like Obesity, Yoga is often used as a tool for weight loss. Asanas are practiced extensively at all levels because of the muscle stretching and muscle toning effects of the postures. Asanas also massage the internal organs and spine, thereby enhancing their functions. Asanas also enhance the stamina of the person, thereby improving the health of the heart.
Basic Yoga exercises focus on improving the strength and flexibility of the spine. When the spine is strong you can then proceed to more vigorous styles of Yoga where you start to work every muscle of your body. This is where you will definitely see a major weight loss begin to happen.
Yoga basically works on every part of the body: performing detoxification, stimulating the internal organs, and gently stretching the muscles and joints. When the mind, body, and spirit are in harmony, you will experience a natural weight loss.
The Yoga exercises transform your flabby muscles; the stronger your muscles become with Yoga, the more they will tone your body to promote weight loss. Yoga also improves your internal functions, allowing blood to flow freely to all organs; this in turn helps to rid your body of toxins. Pain can also be alleviated by performing Yoga stretches to loosen tight muscles. Perhaps the biggest benefit is as a stress reliever. Stress can cause a wide variety of physical and mental ailments.
How does yoga build fitness?
There are many variables at work but one recent study from the US indicates that muscles respond to stretching by becoming larger, extracting and using more oxygen more quickly and efficiently.
In other words, while you’re increasing your flexibility in a yoga class, you’re also building muscle strength and endurance, which makes you fitter. Other studies suggest that the specific breathing techniques used in yoga help increase lung capacity by improving flexibility through the torso, shoulders and back, allowing the lungs to expand more fully.
While not all yoga styles are aerobic, if you practise vigorously or try vinyasa or astanga classes, you can boost your heart rate into the aerobic range. These sequences increase the heart rate, making yoga aerobically challenging and encourage weight loss.
And, anyone who’s practised the yoga sequence of sun salutations or other continuously linked poses will know you can get your blood pumping and sweat dripping in a yoga class. But, even yoga postures that don’t get your heart rate up that high can improve cardiovascular conditioning.
Many yoga poses, especially standing, balancing and inverted ones, build quite a bit of strength because they require sustained isometric contractions of many large and small muscles at once. And if you hold the poses longer, this increases the effect. Studies have found that yoga can lower the resting heart rate, increase endurance and improve your maximum uptake of oxygen during exercise — all indications of improved fitness