Increased strength and flexibility are absolute benefits of practicing yoga regularly – but what about weight loss?
Most of us who practice yoga regularly are already living out its benefits:
Increased flexibility, stronger balance, powerful form and even working your way through chronic pain stem from a healthy and regular yoga routine.
But for those looking for muscle toning, definition, and fat-loss – does the practice of yoga, especially hot yoga, really help?
But the long answer requires a little more digging, along with a much more holistic approach to the weight-loss game itself.
While yoga is not, by all intents and purposes, considered a high-intensity workout, the benefits it has to the slimming and toning of your body when practiced regularly – outside of a mere relaxation and stretching mechanism – are undeniable.
According to this article in Time Magazine, hot yoga does increase your heart rate significantly, depending on the intensity-rate and longevity of a pose. The study followed a team of “healthy but sedentary young adults” with no prior experience for 24 sessions of hot yoga over an eight-week period.
The research noted that participants, “showed some modest increases in strength and muscle control, as well as a big improvement in balance. They also achieved a slight drop in body weight.”
Fellow of American College of Sports Medicine, Dr. Lewis Maharam reinforces that research in this LiveScience article, stating that to lose a significant amount of weight, an individual would have to concentrate on increasing their heart-rate while continuing to challenge themselves with poses of increased difficulty during their yoga regimen.
If you carve out time specifically dedicated to you physical wellness and form, you’re likely making better eating choices as well.
As an avid pursuer of fitness, WooWoo jumped at the chance to participate in the Hot House 21 Challenge. It was not only an opportunity to personally challenge herself, but to share the experience with her listeners on The Point, a Hampton Roads radio station.
As a busy mom and full time on-air disc radio personality, WooWoo’s biggest concern with the challenge was logistics. How was she going to fit it all in? But what she discovered and loved was the abundance of options on the class schedule with classes’ morning, noon and night. With that flexibility and making her practice a priority she was able to fit yoga into her schedule.
With the logistical aspect taken care of, WooWoo’s goals were to successfully complete the challenge and focus on a total mind and body workout.
“I wanted to really spend the time on the mat being at peace with myself. Appreciating my breath. Silencing all the noise. I wanted to not only come out physically stronger – but mentally.”
In contrast to her past yoga practice, she found in the challenge that she was connecting more to the breath and the solitude. She let go and just moved. Being in the moment helped her connect more to each day – so those feelings of happiness motivated her to keep going back.
“The world would be a happier place if everyone spent one hour a day doing yoga – relaxing, breathing and appreciating life. Yoga is truly mood altering – in the best most positive way possible.”
Thanks WooWoo! A testament for working moms everywhere. #HH21Challenge