Yoga, Pranayama, and Asanas for weight loss: Obesity comes as the biggest nightmare for people and takes a lot of lives across the globe. While the temptation to eat and not pay attention to weight is very strong, its aftereffects come down heavily on everybody because fighting obesity is a difficult thing. People burn their pockets by hitting the gym to burn the extra fat and get into a slim figure. They rely on health supplements that can suppress their feeling about eating and sometimes, some people completely start living on water and follow a crash diet.
Practising Yoga Helps in Weight Loss
However, research shows that none of these methods has proven beneficial to cut those extra kilos from the body. The most effective method of remaining in those slim figures is to religiously practice yoga. Yoga has seen the light of the day because it is one of the most beneficial remedies and therapies that help people fight even the most non-curable diseases such as cancer, diabetes, etc. With the help of yoga, many people across the world have fought their fat and endorse a slim, sleek figure today.
Yoga today is one of the best exercises to lose weight. Yoga keeps you fit both physically and mentally. By doing yoga, the body becomes strong, muscles are toned and weight is also reduced. Yoga not only reduces the fat deposited on the body but also makes the body flexible, which keeps you healthy. By doing yoga regularly, you get in shape along with reducing weight.
Yoga initiates complete movement of all the muscles and organs of the body, ensuring that all the cells in the body release energy and burn the fat deposited under the layers of the skin the biggest culprit of obesity. Yoga exercises lead to an increased heartbeat along with increased metabolism in the body which helps fight fat extensively.
Benefits of Yoga
When you exercise yoga daily, it helps you in leading a healthy lifestyle and when you club it with a well-balanced diet, it also results in effective weight loss. Following yoga daily, you ensure that all your positions and alignments are correct and that you follow all poses correctly. This in turn helps you to burn the extra fat in your body. However, in order to lose weight, there are many things that one has to keep in mind while doing yoga, in addition to getting all the poses, positions,s and alignment right.
Pranayama and Yogic Breathing
Breathing also plays a very important role in yoga and is integral for you to achieve your set motive of losing excess weight. Owing to this reason, every yoga regime starts by practising the basic pranayama, also called yogic breathing.
Yogic Breathing (Diaphragmatic Breath or Belly Breathing)
Yogic breathing is proper breathing. To learn yoga, asanas, and pranayama, all novices should start with this basic exercise. In Yogic breathing, the diaphragm contracts, the belly expands, and the lungs fill with air as you breathe properly, which begins in the nose and travels to the stomach. As it presses down on the lungs and creates negative pressure in the chest, which causes air to flow into your lungs, it is the most effective way to breathe.
Yogic breathing helps to ensure proper circulation in the body, which helps a lot in burning the fat deposits under the skin.
Pranayama Exercises for Losing Weight
Next comes pranayama. Getting the right pranayama helps you not only to lose weight, but also helps to increase focus, and calm your mind.
You can lose weight by using pranayama breathing techniques! But how does this age-old method of regulating Prana flow affect the extra weight that has been put on the body? In its own way, modern science has come up with solutions.
How Does Pranayama Aid in Losing Weight?
As we all know, pranayama is deep, deliberate breathing that increases the flow of oxygen to our body’s cellular community. The body’s metabolism becomes extremely active as a result of this increase in oxygen supply, which lowers BMI.
Simply said, burning more calories equates to having an extremely active metabolism. The quicker you lose weight, the greater your metabolic rate is.
Below are the three pranayamas which help in losing weight.
- Kapalbhati Pranayama (Breath of Fire or Skull Shining Breath)
- Nadishodhan Pranayama or Anulom Vilom Pranayama (Alternative Nostril Pranayama)
- Udgeeth Pranayama (Chanting Breath)
Nadishodhan Pranayama or Anulom Vilom Pranayama (Alternative Nostril Pranayama)
Another beneficial breathing practice for losing weight is anulom-vilom pranayama. The breathing technique “Anulom vilom” is also referred to as “alternative breathing” because it involves using both nostrils, one after the other. One nostril at a time breathing is used in this intermediate technique. It is a potent method for restoring equilibrium and harmony to the energy channels.
Udgeeth Pranayama (Chanting Breath)
In this practice, the Om AUM mantra is used to calm the mind, banish unproductive ideas, tone the lungs, and increase mental clarity. Chanting breath (udgeeth pranayama) also helps to reduce body weight. Practice this pranayama at least for 6 minutes every day to see the impact.
Kapalbhati Pranayama (Breath of Fire or Skull Shining Breath)
Only after learning the basic pranayama techniques (like yogic breathing, bhramari, nadi-shodhan, udgeeth pranayama, etc) should you attempt this more difficult workout. It contains active jets of exhalation that are initiated through the abdominal wall and significantly enhance energy while purifying the head and nasal passages.
Kapalbhati Pranayama helps to reduce belly fat. Sit in any meditation pose to do this. Place both palms in the Gyan Mudra position on the knees. loosely shut your eyes. You should inhale through your nostrils and exhale with a little blow through your nose. This is one of Kapalbhati’s frequencies. Perform one of its 25 cycles. Take two or three deep breaths after the first cycle before practising the second. Increase the number of cycles gradually.
Yogasana to lose weight
Truly speaking, almost all poses in yoga are beneficial for the body in some or the other way. However, there are some poses that contribute to weight loss that other poses do. Some poses like boat and crescent contribute a lot of weight loss and focus on the fat deposits in the body. Some other yoga asanas that help in effective weight loss are as follows:
- Dhanurasana (bow pose)
- Paschimottasana (Two legged forward bend)
- Bhujangasana (Cobra pose)
- Purvottanasana (Upward Plank Pose)
- Ushtrasana (Camel Pose)
- Titali Asana (Butterfly posture)
- Agnisar kriya (abdomen contractions)
Let’s see these asanas’ benefits in brief now.
Dhanurasana (bow pose)
This yoga pose is known as Dhanurasana because it typically causes the body to resemble a stretched bow. Dhanurasana helps reduce belly fat. All internal organs, muscles, and joints are exercised by this. In order to achieve this, start by lying on your stomach. After then, join the two legs together. Both legs should be bent at the knees. Hold the ankles of both feet with your hands, leaving a space of one foot between your knees and toes. Raise both legs’ knees, thighs, and torsos with your hands, depending on your comfort and ability. Breathe normally. Return to the previous position after remaining in this position for a comfortable amount of time.
Paschimottasana (Two legged forward bend)
This pose is excellent for shedding tummy fat. All of the body’s muscles are stretched out in this pose. To do this, sit with the legs stretched out in front, now keeping the palms on the knees, while inhaling, raise the hands upwards and straighten the waist and pull it upwards, now while exhaling, bend forward and touch the toes with the hands. Place the forehead on the knees while holding it. Keep in mind that the knees should not bend. And try to put the elbows on the ground.
Bhujangasana (Cobra pose)
This pose is excellent for slimming the waist, widening the shoulders, and strengthening the arms in addition to reducing belly fat. It is crucial for giving the body flexibility and shape. Cobra Pose is another name for Bhujangasana. because it appears to be expanding its hood in a snake-like stance. Lie on your stomach on the ground and perform this. Now, pull your upper body forward from the waist with the assistance of both hands, keeping your elbows bent. On the ground, the palm is open and stretches out. Move the face upwards now without moving the rest of the body. Spend some time in this position.
Purvottanasana (Upward Plank Pose)
This pose makes it simple to lose weight. This is a wonderful posture to elongate the arms and lower body. The body remains flexible as a result. Sit upright and spread your legs out in front as you do this. Remember that the spine should be straight and that the claws are attached. Now lift your lower waist up while keeping both hands on the ground. Return to your normal position after a brief period of time spent in this position.
Ushtrasana (Camel Pose)
Ustrasana is where a camel’s form is created. Because of this, it is known as Ustrasana. If you have a larger stomach, this yoga will also have an impact on your waist, chest, and arms. Sit in Vajrasana and take a kneeling position to perform this. Bend your back rearward while holding the heels of your feet with your hands and maintaining a straight line from your knees to your waist. Now turn your head to the back.
Titali Asana (Butterfly posture)
When performing the butterfly pose, the posture changes to resemble a butterfly. This is the reason the position is known as butterfly posture. The thighs and stomach are impacted by this yoga. Do this pose if you have a lot of belly fat on your thighs and legs. To accomplish this, bend both feet at the knees and join the soles of the feet together to get the ankles as close as you can. Raising the knees up, bringing them together, and pressing them down toward the ground while holding the knees with the hands. Repeat this workout 3 to 4 times.
Agnisar kriya (abdomen contractions)
This effect strengthens and accelerates the digestive process. Additionally, it eliminates obesity by lowering belly fat and is helpful for constipation. You can perform this pranayama in any of the three positions: standing, sitting or lying down. Sitting can be accomplished by assuming the Siddhasana position and resting both hands on either knee. To accomplish this, stand up, gently open the legs, and lay your hands on your thighs. Output breath held. After that, pump your stomach by drawing it in and then letting it out.
Please do the yoga practises under the supervision of a trained yoga teacher. Once you learn this, you can practise this at your home, garden, or in park.
Also Read: Yoga Asanas – Basic Rules and Tips