How Yoga Weight Loss Can Lead You to Fitness

What makes yoga practice a good way to eliminate belly fat?

Yoga is known for its many benefits. It strengthens our body, increases our flexibility, and improves our ability to focus and concentrate. But one of the many notable things that yoga is affiliated with is losing weight. You’d probably be thinking, is a slow-paced type of exercise like yoga really capable of doing such a thing?

More often we associate our ability to lose weight to more vigorous and energetic types of workouts. Physical activities involving cardio and basically anything that gets our bodies sweating and our heart racing are something that we would take as a good tool for weight loss. But did you know that even a more toned-down exercise like yoga can still promote weight loss?

Is yoga really good for weight loss?

Yoga, in general, can’t be solely responsible for helping with weight loss. This is a significant transformation process that needs to be supported by other significant factors. Indeed, practicing yoga regularly would contribute to the developments but you must also be engaging in other physical activities such as:

  • maintaining a healthy, balanced diet
  • running
  • walking
  • aerobic exercises
  • other cardio exercises

It is no surprise that most people think of yoga as more of a demonstrative type of exercise wherein physical, mental, and spiritual aspects of a person are involved. But in actuality, the meditation and deep breathing techniques make yoga practice unique. It emphasizes the need to cultivate not only the body but also the mind and the heart. By doing so, we become more connected with the energy inside of us and can exhibit a more positive outlook towards life. Our mind is powerful enough to affect what our body feels or experiences that’s why it’s important to take care of it as well.

Yoga may not be like other powerful forms of exercise that burn calories fast, but it has many other aspects to it that can help you lose weight. For instance, stress eating is one of the factors that lead to weight gain. Whenever we feel stressed or anxious, we tend to overindulge in eating to temporarily distract us or provide relief. Yoga already helps us reduce stress and anxiety. With that, you can avoid stress eating and gaining weight.

There are plenty of more reasons as to why yoga can help with burning calories. We’ll dive deeper into them later on.

Regular yoga vs. hot yoga: Which is better?

Which type of yoga is the best for weight loss

There has been a debate going on about which is better for burning calories: regular yoga or hot yoga?

We all know regular yoga or non-hot yoga refers to the normal kind of yoga where there’s no heat involved. Here, you just execute a series of postures accompanied by proper breathing techniques. The poses involved are meant to strengthen the body, increase its flexibility, tone the muscle groups, and many more.

On the other hand, hot yoga pertains to performing a sequence of 26 movements in a room with a high temperature. The goal of hot yoga is to make the yoga practitioners sweat like crazy, enabling them to detoxify. Some believe that the heated room is meant to replicate the humidity of India, where yoga originated from.

So, is hot yoga really better at dealing with weight loss? It can be an easy choice, considering that in its classes people are sweating profusely. Sweating is often affiliated with burning calories so there’s that. However, there’s really no scientific data proving that this, in fact, is true. Probably hot yoga has more chances of winning this category for the sweating bonus but generally speaking, yoga in itself is a good practice to maintain in your lifestyle if your goal is to lose weight.

Types of non-hot yoga classes

Yoga has so many types of non-hot yoga classes. In the Sweatbox Yoga studio, you will be finding a lot of them as indicated below:

Vinyasa yoga

Vinyasa, the more powerful style of yoga, includes doing a series of fast-paced poses called “sun salutations” and then afterward you will execute a flow of standing poses that will keep your body in the move.

To know more about Vinyasa’s yoga styles, check them down below:

Ashtanga

This yoga style is an energetic and vigorous one that involves following the same series of poses each time while synchronizing your breath. You can memorize the sequence and do it on your own at home. This method of yoga causes intense internal heat that makes you sweat and detoxify.

Hot Yoga

Basically, this is the kind of yoga that is done in a heated room or studio. The purpose of hot yoga is to execute different poses in a room that’s temperature is cranked up to make you sweat profusely. By perspiring, you are also releasing toxins and thus removing the toxic substances in your body.

Power Yoga

Power yoga is an athletic type of workout that is based on the heat and intensity of Ashtanga. This also includes doing a series of fixed poses that help with muscle tone and extreme perspiration. This yoga style is famously used in gyms and health clubs.

Gentle Yoga

Gentle yoga, like its name, is a calmer and more serene way of workout. This type of yoga is centered more on relaxation and allows your body to move more comfortably. Generally, poses are held for 5 minutes each.

What are the types of gentle yoga?

Hatha

The term Hatha is known for being used by yoga studios to indicate that the classes are not under Vinyasa. This style, although not all of its sessions involve gentle yoga, usually takes 45 to 90 minutes of poses, breathing, and meditation.

Kripalu

Kripalu yoga is the most inclusive class of all. This is where all levels of yoga practitioners and body types are welcome to participate. It has what you would call an “individualist approach” and is mostly chosen by students that are nervous about joining group sessions.

Integral

Integral gives more emphasis on one of the major benefits of practicing yoga—being at one with your mind and body. This method focuses on leading your mental and physical state towards a happier way of living life.

Types of hot yoga classes

Hot yoga isn’t a one-dimensional routine, it also has different types and classes. One of the most popular ones is Bikram yoga, which obviously was created by Choudhury. From then on, so many yoga masters around the globe have created their own versions, making sure to tap on the different parts of the body for each one.

Sweatbox Yoga is one of the leading yoga studios in Singapore. Here, they are offering a variety of hot yoga classes that the students can choose from. Check out below to find out what they are and how much sweat you’re going to make in each hot yoga class:

Hot 26 (60 minutes)

This is the traditional type of hot yoga where you perform a series of 26 poses in a heated room. It takes place in 60 minutes (an hour). The repeated and consistent practice of this routine will help you witness the changes in your body. This class is recommended for beginners.

Sweat level: 3/5

Hot 26 (90 minutes)

It’s the same as the one above, the only difference is that this one is longer and more of a Bikram yoga. It’s a rejuvenating exercise in a heated room involving continuous movements that will get you sweating even more.

Sweat level: 5/5

Hot Core

As the name states, this hot yoga class focuses on working on your core muscles. This class, however, is not recommended for pregnant women.

Sweat level: 4/5

Hot Flow

In this class, you will be faced with increased movement and breath correlation on top of the series of postures. It’s a class that’s perfect for intermediate yoga practitioners.

Sweat level: 5/5

Hot Hatha

This is a more toned-down version of a hot yoga class. More gentle movements are involved, requiring proper focus and breathing techniques. This class is a beginner-friendly intermediate one.

Sweat level: 3.5/5

Warm Stretch

This is an ever slower-paced yoga class conducted in a room that’s heated only up to 30 degrees that focuses on various stretches that will warm up your body. It also involves the usage of props to further enhance the stretches. This is great for those who have tight muscles.

Sweat level: 3/5

Hot Hatha (Yoga Conditioning)

This is a more enhanced type of yoga class that combines the mindfulness quality of yoga with the importance of functional mobility and strength training from other types of workouts. This class is suitable for all levels of practitioners.

Sweat level: 5/5

What are the benefits of yoga?

Yoga is such a versatile type of workout that even its benefits are wide and diverse. It doesn’t just focus on one aspect of our body; it touches a lot of its parts! Yoga proves that you don’t always have to engage in strenuous or vigorous activities to be fit. It may be a little more of the gentle side compared to other forms of exercise, but it does so many wonders to our well-being.

Indeed, one of the greatest advantages of practicing yoga is weight loss, but it has a lot of other benefits that will certainly revamp your lifestyle.

Short-term physical benefits:

  • It improves blood circulation
  • It relieves shoulder tension
  • It reduces inflammation
  • It relieves constipation

Long-term physical benefits:

  • It helps with weight loss
  • It improves metabolism
  • It slows down aging
  • It improves flexibility
  • It strengthens and tones the muscle groups
  • It improves posture
  • It helps manage blood pressure

Short-term mental benefits:

  • It promotes relaxation and stress relief
  • It improves the quality of sleep

Long-term mental benefits:

  • It improves focus and concentration
  • It manages symptoms of depression and anxiety

Yoga poses that can help lose weight

Here are some simple poses that you can follow to start your weight loss journey. Keep in mind that by doing these, you can’t expect to lose weight right away. Just like yoga, you have to be patient with the process and focus on strengthening your body and improving your focus and concentration for you to truly achieve your goal.

  • Plank pose
  • Warrior pose
  • Triangle pose
  • Downward facing dog pose
  • Shoulder stand pose
  • Bridge pose
  • Twisted Chair Pose
  • Boat pose
  • Sun Salutation
  • Cobra pose

Yoga for weight loss: Is this your road to fitness?

Losing weight is not an easy journey, but getting into yoga is a good start. By engaging all your muscles, bones, joints, and other parts of your body, you will be improving your physical strength in no time! This is also a great way for you to get in touch with your inner energy. Yoga will help you develop the skill of total body awareness; being able to know exactly what your body needs and wants.

Being healthy is a strict discipline that we must all follow for us to live a happier, more carefree life. Weight loss involves a lot of self-control and a need for motivation—the desire to eat and become lazy instead of active is strong. That’s why yoga is here to help us move forward with it.

Yoga is not just about losing weight. It provides a countless number of benefits that will surely impact our health for the rest of our lives. Especially with everything that’s going on around us, we need to practice yoga more than ever.

If you’re looking for quality yoga classes in Singapore to help you with your weight loss journey, you can join Sweatbox Yoga!

About the Author​

Lynette is fully dedicated to the support and empowerment of the growing community of committed yoga students and teachers. As one of the Lead Instructors for Yoga Teacher Training, she is here to share tips on how to grow your profile as a yoga teacher or build a yoga business either physically or digitally.