The thought of using yoga to lose weight may sound appealing to some.
But, the truth is that yoga alone cannot help you lose weight.
After all, it’s only one aspect of an overall weight loss plan that also needs to include diet and exercise.
But, if you’re still interested in learning more about how yoga could be useful in your weight loss journey, read on!
We’ll look at the potential benefits of yoga and how it can fit into your weight loss efforts.
Is yoga really good for weight loss?
Sure, yoga can help you lose weight in a way that seems counterintuitive—that is, by being more physically active.
But don’t get your hopes up thinking you can replace your regular gym routine with yoga.
Yoga isn’t as efficient at helping people burn calories or lose weight as other forms of exercise.
For instance, one study found that running burns 50 percent more calories than doing yoga, and jogging burns 75 percent more!
And that’s not to mention traditional weight-lifting exercises like squats and presses have been shown to burn even more calories than aerobic exercise.
If you’re looking to do some cardio or lifting weights and tone up your body, take a pass on yoga and stick with your normal routine.
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What to think about before you start doing yoga
The first thing you need to do is start thinking about what type of yoga you want to do.
There’re a lot of different styles, so you need to think about what works best for your body and goals.
For example, if you have injuries or limitations that prevent certain poses, you’ll want to avoid those.
If your goal is weight loss, don’t choose yoga classes with a lot of asanas that require balance and strength.
And while choosing something online might be easier on your wallet (and more convenient), make sure it’s something that has been reviewed well by others.
And at least try classes in person before committing to a long-term membership.
Is yoga safe for weight loss?
Losing weight isn’t as simple as buying a yoga mat and hitting a downward dog.
The answer to whether yoga is safe for weight loss is a resounding no.
It isn’t, because being overweight stems from an energy imbalance between calories in (from food) and calories out (burning energy through activities).
Yoga alone cannot fix that equation without modifying your diet or incorporating more exercise into your daily routine.
Can you lose weight with yoga?
Absolutely—but only if you first burn off extra calories by increasing activity levels elsewhere in your life.
Is yoga right for you?
Only if it replaces an activity less beneficial to your health or fitness goals, like sitting around on Facebook all day.
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How long does it take?
Yoga isn’t a quick fix, nor is it intended to be.
If you’re looking to slim down quickly, yoga might not be your answer.
Traditional yoga doesn’t work any faster than other forms of exercise; what does change.
However, is that traditional yoga helps your body focus and releases stress so you are more apt to lose weight.
Yoga also focuses on core strength and posture.
By focusing on these aspects as well as stretching, you can improve flexibility and range of motion which can help your overall health and make you less prone to injury or pain.
Thus improving functionality which can lead to losing weight over time.
Studies have found that higher levels of physical fitness are correlated with lower amounts of metabolic dysfunction.
What do you need to buy?
Before you get into an activity, especially one that requires a significant investment of time and money, make sure you really need to be doing it.
You might discover there are more affordable or practical options out there.
If that doesn’t work, then figure out if you can borrow from friends and family.
If that’s not an option either, then find a way to afford what you want through savings.
It may take longer to reach your goal but at least you won’t have any added financial burdens along the way.
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How much does it cost?
Most yoga sessions cost between $10 and $20, so if you’re only taking classes a few times a week, your costs are minimal.
Many studios offer student rates or discounts if you buy packages of classes upfront.
At $10 to $20 per class, these discounted packages can save you up to 20 percent per session.
However, if you prefer a daily practice in an environment that’s not conducive to meditation (like gym, yoga), then stick with your local studio to keep costs down.
Concluding thoughts on Yoga and weight loss
The thing is, at its core, yoga isn’t just a form of exercise—it’s a form of meditation.
And while breathing and feeling your body as you move through positions can be a relaxing way to spend an hour.
There isn’t any scientific proof that practicing yoga regularly will help you shed pounds or prevent weight gain.
You might even find that some poses could make weight loss more difficult than it would be with other workouts.
If anything, research has shown that doing yoga regularly could lead to you being less active in other areas of your life.
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