We are going to tell you what Yoga poses help you lose weight (potentially anyway) but we need to talk about this weight loss topic first.
Let us cut straight to the chase. Exercise and a nutrient-rich diet are essential for optimal health. When you are carrying excess weight, this can create health issues. And when you are underweight this can lead to health issues. When we take the emotion out of these topics and turn off the diet culture, it’s pretty simple. However, what isn’t simple is… taking the emotion out and turning off diet culture (haha).
Our goal with our Pilates and Yoga classes is to be different.
When the other apps and programs tap into the feelings of not enoughness we want to tap into the feelings of “you’re already amazing”.
When they promote with a before and after, we remind you that health looks different on all sizes.
When they ask you to insert your current weight and goal weight, we don’t even ask you about it, because you’re so much more than that number on the scale.
We told you, we’re different. Do you want to know why?
Because between the two of us we spent years focused on losing weight.
We’re living this one precious life and we choose to focus all our energy on losing weight and making sure we don’t put on weight. Thoughts about calories in and out, fad diets, planning meals, planning workouts. Pinching our arm and belly fat with disgust. Saying no to social occasions because the menu didn’t suit the current diet.
We’re so glad we made big changes!
And yes, your diet and movement regime are extremely important but your mindset around your diet and your workouts are equally as important!
Your mindset defines HOW you choose to exercise and eat. The HOW is just as important as the doing.
We found success by welcoming in a mindset of self-acceptance.
This big shift helped us both change the MOTIVATION behind our eating and exercise habits.
Instead of working out to lose weight, we workout to feel great. Instead of restricting all the “bad foods” we allow all foods but choose to eat foods that make us feel good (and yes, this means enjoying the pizza, the pasta, the ice cream, just not all the time or at every meal!).
Instead of creating strength just so our abs look good, we strengthen the core to promote better posture and reduce back injuries. Instead of choosing a workout that gives the best calorie burn, we choose one that we enjoy!
This is why we’ll always recommend you find a way of movement that you enjoy. We love to walk and practice Yoga and Pilates. These workouts are not chores for us, they are just part of our everyday routine.
What Yoga Poses Help You Lose Weight?
The regular answer to this question would be, any Yoga pose that burns calories. Or rather the most calories… because even when you’re blinking and breathing you are burning calories.
Think Plank Pose, Boat Pose and definitely throw in a bunch of Sun Salutation flows.
Any of the Yoga Asanas (Asana means postures/poses in Sanskrit) that get you to move and engage more muscles, can be deemed one of the “good for losing weight Yoga poses”.
Anyway, we kind of feel this Yoga for weight loss is a dumb topic. Can we change it?
What Yoga Poses Help You Feel Amazing?
Ahhh, this is much better!
And let’s remember, regular movement is essential for optimal health. Regular exercise will put you in a better mood because you’ll release all those natural feel-good hormones. Exercise will help you strengthen your core which will lead to less back pain and potential injuries. It will improve digestion… and regular digestion is the stuff of dreams (if you’ve ever suffered from constipation that is).
Ok, here are the poses!
Downward Facing Dog or Adho Mukha Svanasana
In a Yoga Class, you will find yourself in downward facing dog often. Once you’ve done Yoga for a while, it’s a pose that feels like home, it’s a pose that you will come back to again and again. So it’s important to get the technique right.
- Start on your hands and knees on the mat. Knees under your hips, toes tucked and your fingers pointing forward.
- Lift your hips towards the ceiling, lengthening your arms and legs, until your body creates an upside-down V-shape. Gently draw your chest towards your legs. Feel the spine and legs stretch.
- If your hamstrings are tight, bend your knees slightly.
Upward Facing Dog or Urdhva Mukha Svanasana
A pose that usually occurs after down dog in your Chatarunga sequence. The combination of Down Dog and Up Dog is kind of like poetry in motion… it just feels so good (as long as you don’t have any shoulder injuries!). If you struggle with Up Dog a great option is Cobra Pose.
- Lie flat on your stomach, toes are untucked. Bring your hands alongside your rib cage, palms on the earth and elbows high.
- Start to lengthen your arms and lift your chest forwards through your shoulders. Press the hands down into the earth. Be mindful to not lock out elbow joints.
- Squeeze your glutes so your knees and thighs lift off the ground.
Bow Pose or Dhanurasana
Bow Pose will help you feel amazing, it’s the best upper body stretch! Such a great Yoga pose to balance out the current lifestyle of sitting and using tech. It’s a great pose to counteract ‘tech neck’ which none of us want! It’s a pose you need to warm up to, try one of our MerryBody Classes with bow pose and we will guide you into it!
- Start by laying face down on your Yoga mat. Bend your knees, draw your heels as close to your booty as you can. Now, catch the outside of your ankles with your hands.
- Slowly raise your torso and thighs off the mat. This will come naturally as you kick your ankles into your hands.
- Look forward, relax your shoulders and lengthen your legs as much as possible. Hold this position for 30 seconds before returning to the starting position. Repeat several times.
- Ensure to do a gentle twist afterwards to neutralise the spine. Lay on your back, knees above hips, shins parallel to the floor and then drop knees to the side and hold. Swap sides.
Chair Pose or Utkatasana
This is one of those poses that gets you feeling empowered. It can be really tough, especially if your Yoga instructor holds you in it for a while! Prepare to work on the strength of the body and also the mind!
- Stand at the top of your mat with your feet together. Option, take feet to hip width.
- Raise arms overhead, keep them parallel to one another.
- Bend your knees so that the booty goes back in space.
- Shoulders back, squeeze your booty and engage your core.
- Hold and breathe.
Now, the best thing you can do is try out a Yoga pose! Or better yet, try out a Yoga Class! Here’s one from our YouTube channel.
If you’re serious about creating a consistent Yoga practice, then sign up to MerryBody.
You’ll get instant access to hundreds of Yoga, Pilates, Yin Yoga and Meditation classes. We also create a weekly class plan for you. It’s carefully curated to work your amazing body in an effective and balanced way.
Sign up for your free trial here.
If you have any questions about the above poses or if you want to chat more about diet culture and weight loss, send us an email or message on Instagram.
Emma + Carla