Shikha Mittal


Get In Perfect Body Shape with these Yoga Poses

Have you been struggling for years to lose weight? Why not you try Yoga for losing excess fat from your body?  Yoga aims at making you fit by increasing flexibility. It involves twisting the body, forward and backward bends, inversions and other poses that help in opening up the otherwise rusted muscles and thereby facilitate weight loss.
Not only yoga helps in losing extra fat but also yoga gives you physical benefits too. For example:

  1. It makes you more flexible
  2. It tones and strengthens your muscles.
  3. It makes you more energetic with increased vitality.
  4. It makes you perform better as an athlete.
  5. Your respiratory and cardiovascular system stays healthy.
  6. Best poses or asanas for you to give your body a perfect or a dream shape are:

Surya Namaskar/ Sun Salutation

“Surya Namaskar” is a Sanskrit word which means obeisance (Namaskar) to the Sun (Surya). It is a set of 12 powerful yoga asanas (postures) that provide a good cardiovascular workout. These asanas have a phenomenal impact on the waist, throat, chest, heart, stomach, intestine, and legs. In simpler words, Sun Salutation or Surya Namaskar is a complete body workout in itself. This yoga technique is also the base of power yoga which aims at achieving more health benefits in less time.

To lose some weight with the help of Surya Namaskar, incorporate the following steps into your daily schedule and see quick results –

The first step is to learn how to do Surya Namaskar the right way. All the 12 asanas of Surya namaskar, need to be performed with precision to see visible weight loss results!
You need to perform it every day at the same time to lose weight faster. If you would like to stay motivated throughout the exercise routine, try some soothing and gentle music.
You should perform the steps at a slow and steady pace. It would take around 12-15 days to perfect all the 12 poses. This will also allow you to build strength and get slim faster.
Once you have built enough strength, increase the number of rounds you do! For effective weight loss, you could practice Surya namaskar for about 6 days a week and do a total of 12 rounds.
End your yoga session with 5 mins of stretching and relaxation poses like Shavasana (Corpse Pose).

The Warrior Pose or Veerabhadrasana

The Warrior Yoga pose is a great way to tone the upper and lower body. The pose strengthens the weak muscles, builds endurance, and provides energy essential for living a healthy life. The pose is done with feet spread wide about 3-4 inches apart and in the lunge position. Arms are outstretched to the sides with the head turned in the same direction of the bent knee.

  • Begin in Warrior II with your right leg forward.
  • Flip your palms up toward the ceiling.
  • Tip back, side bending in your left waist. Allow the back of your left hand to relax on your left leg, and reach your right arm toward the ceiling. Your gaze should be toward the ceiling.
  • Open your chest toward the ceiling just a bit. Breathe here for at least three deep breaths, and then repeat on the other side.

While going into the asana ensure that the bodyweight is distributed evenly on both the legs. The back leg should be stretched straight without bending the knee and the front knee should be bent at right angle. The hips should be in one line and pelvic squarely in front," shares Anju Kalhan.

"Your palms should face downwards and not upwards. Your torso should stay in center and not move along with your knee," says Seema Sondhi.

Triangular pose or Trikonasana

This pose strengthens the muscles in the thighs, hips, and back while toning the knees and ankles. It also stimulates the organs of the torso, improving metabolism. It is known to be therapeutic for anxiety, flat feet, infertility, osteoporosis, and even sciatica.

Steps to practice Trikonasana / Triangle Pose

  • Starting Position: Stand upright keeping the spine erect, head straight, feet together with big toes and heels slightly touching each other. Hands to the side of the body. The weight of the body should neither be on the heels nor on the toes but distributed evenly on both of them. Relax and take deep breaths.
  • Move the legs 3-4 feet distance apart. Raise both the arms straight out to the sides, in line with the shoulders and parallel to the floor with the palms facing downwards.
  • Move the right foot to the outside direction. Turn the left foot slightly to the inward direction. The knees must remain straight throughout the practice.
  • Slowly begin to bend the trunk towards the right side. Make sure the body doesn’t go in the forward direction.
  • Once the trunk is completely bent the hand must be close to the right ankle with the fingers slightly touching the floor. 
  • Ideally the right palm rest on the floor. Avoid forcing this position as with regular practice it comes easily on the floor.
  • Stretch the left arm vertically. Move the head in the upward direction and look straight.     
  • Hold the position for a minute or half or even lesser in the beginning. Gradually increasing the time as you begin to feel more comfortable.
  • To return, lift the arms first and then slowly move the trunk back in the upright position. Relax the body.
  • Practice this asana 1-3 times on both sides.

Upward Plank or Purvottanasana

Upward Plank pose strengthens the arms, wrists, and legs, and stretches the entire front body, as well as the shoulders and ankles. Practicing this pose can help tone the hamstrings and the triceps, and can be therapeutic for fatigue.

  • Start in Staff Pose.
  • Place your hands behind your hips with the tips of your fingers right behind your buttocks.
  • Either point your fingers towards your body, which is more common, or away from your body.
  • If you point them towards your body, your shoulders will be less open, but it’s a great stretch for your wrist flexors.

If you have a limited range of motion of the wrist, this posture may hurt and is not recommended.

Boat Pose or Navasana

As you dig into the Boat pose, your body mimics the shape of a boat with sails and oars. The pose challenges, strengthens abdominal muscles, enhances concentration, and builds stamina. Given below are the seven stages of performing a Boat Pose:

  • Sit on a yoga mat with bent knees and heels as close to the hips as possible.
  • Keep your hands 2-3 inches behind the posterior.
  • Lengthen your body from the top of the head to the hips
  • Slightly lean back and with an exhalation, lift the feet off the yoga mat.
  • Gently extend the legs in the front and keep the shins parallel to the floor.
  • Stretch the arms outward alongside the legs.
  • To exit the pose, bend the knees and rest the feet on the floor.

The Bridge Pose or Setu Bandhasana

This works wonders on your hips, thighs, stomach as well as back.

  • Lie on your back with your knees bent, feet parallel on the floor and hip-distance apart.
  • Your knees should be over your ankles, at a 90-degree angle.
  • Take several breaths as you feel your body being supported by the ground beneath you.
  • Once you have settled in, press your feet evenly into the mat and lift your spine off the floor, pressing your hips to rise as press your feet down into the mat.
  • Scoop your tailbone under, and if you like, wiggle up onto your shoulders, interlacing the fingers, and clasping your hands underneath you.
  • Take five deep breaths.
  • If you clasped your hands, unclasp them.
  • Slowly lower down, one vertebra at a time.
  • Afterward, hug your knees into your chest to counterbalance the backbend.

If done with dedication and discipline, yoga can help you lose weight and stay in shape. While it is true that in comparison to high-intensity workouts, yoga burns lesser calories but some of the yoga flows, when done at a moderate to high speed, can make you sweat like no other workout. Along with weight loss, yoga also helps to relieve stress, which is one of the main causes of weight gain. When practiced regularly, it leaves you feeling relaxed, fresh and focused. Yoga brings your mind, body, and breath in harmony, thereby eliminating stress from your life. So stay healthy & Stay fit.