How To Achieve Weight Loss With Yoga

By:Paula

How to Do Yoga

Determine a focus for your yoga practice. Before starting yoga, it can help to figure out why you want to practice. Yoga can be a method of physical exercise, a way to reduce and manage stress, a means of healing an illness or injury, or a path to spiritual fulfillment and peace.


Be aware that there is no such thing as "good" or “right” yoga. There are different styles and ways to practice yoga and there will always be more experienced yoga practitioners than you. It’s important to remember that yoga is neither a competition nor a traditional sport, but a personal practice of mindfulness, relaxation, and physicality that is meant to enrich your life and body. There is no right or wrong way to do yoga. Your practice should be about your journey first and foremost.
Gather any equipment you may want to practice. All you truly need to practice yoga is the ability to breathe. Certain pieces of equipment may help you feel more comfortable, though, especially in the beginning. At a minimum, you will need a yoga mat. Consider having props such as a yoga belt, yoga block, and a large blanket or bolster, too.[5] These pieces of equipment can help improve and deepen your yoga practice as well as making it more comfortable.[6]
Wear breathable clothing in which you can move. You'll want clothing that is comfortable and breathes easily. This can help you better achieve a full range of motion and flexibility and also keep you from tugging at overly tight clothing.
Find a comfortable place to practice. If you’ve decided to give yoga a try at home before going to a class, find a comfortable and quiet space in which to explore your yoga practice. Make sure you’ve got plenty of room to move and someway to close yourself off to the outside world.[7]
Warm up with sun salutation. Yoga can be quite active, so it is important to warm up your body properly. Doing a few rounds of sun salutations, or Surya Namaskar, can effectively prepare your muscles and mind to practice yoga.[8]
Learn a few yoga asanas. There are a wide variety of yoga poses, or asanas, that one can practice and they range from difficult and strenuous to simple and relaxing. Start your yoga practice by learning a few asanas that you can enjoy, feel comfortable executing, and which also fit your yoga goals. Hold each asana for 3-5 breaths.[10]
Focus on your breathing. Yogic breathing, or pranayama, is one of the core skills of any yoga practice. Focusing on your breathing can deepen your asana practice, tune you into your own body, and allows you to relax.
Devote time to yoga as often as you can. No matter what Asanas, Pranayam, or goals you choose for your yoga practice, it helps to practice as often as you can. Even if you can only spare 10-15 minutes, the more often you practice, the more you can learn and reap the benefits of yoga.
Figure out what you want out of yoga class. Yoga has evolved into a many different styles and practices, each of which has a different focus. Try different types and instructors until you find the ones that are the right fit for you.[19]
Find a qualified yoga instructor. While there is no national certification for yoga instructors, different types of yoga will have individual certification programs. Find a qualified and certified instructor in a type of yoga you want to try out.[25] All good instructors share several basic attributes and should always make you feel comfortable.
Find a community or studio in which you are comfortable. Every yoga studio offers styles of yoga as well as a different energy. Some studios offer food and tend to be more social, whereas some studios of groups may leave more time for introspection.
Begin a work-study exchange. Many yoga studios offer free classes for people who agree to sit at the reception desk, sweep the studios, or clean the locker rooms. Inquire at your local yoga studio if they allow these arrangements -- they are a great way to save money and become a part of your local yoga community.
Consider online classes. While the feedback and motivation provided by a class is one of the best ways to learn, you can learn new poses and techniques through a wealth of online sources. Yoga specific sites and apps contain thousands of videos detailing any type of yoga practice you can imagine.
Set an intention. A solid yoga practice includes setting an intention. By taking a few seconds to dedicate your practice to something or someone, you may have a more fulfilling practice. Throughout your practice, bring your mind back to your intention. Notice how your intention relates to your practice. Use your intention as a focal point and place of inquiry.
Lengthen the time of your practice. After you feel comfortable with your yoga practice, try extending the duration of your practice by holding each pose a bit longer and flowing seamlessly between asanas. Add new and more challenging poses as you are able.[28]
Intensify your practice. You may want to strengthen the intensity of your practice as you become comfortable with your routine. This can be done easily by holding each pose a little longer and by challenging yourself to sink deeper into challenging poses.
Increase the frequency of your practice. One of the best ways to deepen your yoga practice is to increase the number of days you practice. You can safely build up to 5-7 days per week.[30] If you make yoga a part of your daily routine, its positive effects can benefit your physical and mental health.[31]
Start with meditation. Many people like to begin and their practice with a chanting mantra or meditation session. A mantra is a Vedic hymn, word, or phrase repeated and used as a focal point for meditation. This can help dismiss distracting thoughts, focus on your breath and energy, and raise your awareness of your mind and body.[32]
Integrate new goals. If you started doing yoga with a single goal—to become healthy or to find a mindful way to de-stress—try integrating another purpose into your practice. If you have been focusing on either the body or the mind, try to start focusing on the body and the mind together.
Keep moving forward. Yoga has countless benefits and with by sticking with it, you can reap them. Keep in mind that yoga is a personal practice: it is not about whether or not you can do a particular pose exactly like the person on a video or in a picture. It's about the journey. Keep an open mind and heart at all times.[33]