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yoga exercises weight loss

The 30 Most Helpful Yoga Poses For Weight Loss

 

Yoga is a great way to lose weight, even if you are a beginner. It's an easy way to shed excess body fat and keep long-lasting results. Doing yoga poses regularly helps you achieve your body goals.

Yoga is perfectly suitable for beginners perfectly. It helps shape a healthy body by strengthening your muscles, sweating, burning calories, increasing your blood flow, heart rate, and metabolism.

It's an effective alternative to jogging, swimming, or cycling. It not only helps you stay in shape but also provides many other benefits such as improved flexibility, stamina, mental focus, concentration, and stress relief.

Practicing yoga exercises is a healthy way to heal your body, mind, and soul. Yoga benefits you by maintaining overall health, but also in other areas of your life by making you a happier and more confident person.

It also helps you make the necessary lifestyle changes to get a healthy body. You become more aware of your real body needs and find the strength to overall choose a better way to reach your goals.

Combine these most helpful yoga poses with a healthy diet to promote calorie burn and see results in no time. They are beginners poses that anyone of any age can do to get rid of excess body fat.

 

1. Warrior I or Virabhadrasana I

warrior 1 yoga exercises weight loss

 

 

The Warrior pose is a great posture to build strength in the lower limbs. It can also promote weight loss. You will sweat a lot by holding the position as long as you can.

This pose is a great way to burn calories. Plus, it is the foundation for more advanced standing poses. It is one of the best yoga exercises for weight loss to learn when just starting.

Holding your hands up in the air benefits people with back pain. You will improve your overall balance, strength, and stamina by practicing the warrior I pose.

Here is how to do Warrior I or Virabhadrasana I:

  1. Stand straight with your legs wide apart.
  2. Bring your arms up overhead.
  3. Touch your hands together.
  4. Make sure your knee stays above your ankle.
  5. Extend your back leg as much as possible.
  6. Repeat on the other side.

  

2. Warrior II or Virabhadrasana II

warrior 2 yoga exercises weight loss

 

Warrior II is another variation of Virabhadrasana. It strengthens your hips and thighs. You will also build upper body strength by practicing this posture. It's very energizing and beginner-friendly.

Practice all variations of the warrior pose together for maximum benefit. Plus, it works the abdominals and the leg muscles deeply. Strong dense muscles are very good if you are looking to lose weight.

More muscle fiber means more calories consumed, even when you are not working out. And practicing often builds a healthy body together with focus, and concentration.

Here is how to do Warrior II or Virabhadrasana II:

  1. Stand straight with your legs away from one another.
  2. Move your arms up parallel to the floor.
  3. Keep your hands facing down.
  4. Hold as long as possible for a fat-burning effect.
  5. Repeat with the other leg.

   

3. Mountain Pose or Tadasana

mountain pose yoga exercises weight loss

 

Tadasana is the starting line of all yogis. Your yoga journey begins here with the mountain pose. It has many variations with multiple benefits. It strengthens your legs, feet, and abdomen. 


Start every yoga practice standing up in Tadasana. It's a great way to focus on your training and get rid of worrying thoughts. This exercise helps with concentration and is a great warm-up routine.

Practice it with your feet close together and hands to the sides. Your bodyweight should be distributed evenly between both legs. Make sure to contract your hips and thighs muscles as you stand straight.

Here is how to do Mountain Pose or Tadasana:

  1. Stand with your feet together.
  2. Straighten your spine.
  3. Lift your thighs and buttocks.
  4. Breathe deeply.
  5. Open up your chest.
  6. Keep your arms to the sides.
  7. Clear your mind.

  

4. Tree Pose or Vrikshasana

tree pose yoga exercises weight loss

 

Learn tree pose as soon as possible. It is a basic posture that has plenty of benefits for your body and mind health. This posture improves focus and balance but also boosts your energy levels.

You should incorporate this exercise into your yoga routine. It relieves stress and anxiety by clearing your mind. It doesn't elevate your heart rate as much. But it is a great warm-up pose for more difficult ones to come.

You will get very toned leg muscles when doing the tree pose. Plus it strengthens the ankles, the abdominals, and visceral muscles. It is a good stretch for the hips too. Focus your gaze on a single point to find equilibrium.

Here is how to do Tree Pose or Vrikshasana:

  1. Get in the Tadasana pose.
  2. Shift your body weight onto one leg.
  3. Bend your knee.
  4. Place your foot on the inner thigh.
  5. Open your hips as wide as you can.
  6. Lift your arms overhead.
  7. Join your hands together.
  8. Repeat with the other foot.

  

5. Pigeon pose or Kapotasana

pigeon pose yoga exercises weight loss

  

Learn tree pose as soon as possible. It is a basic posture that has plenty of benefits for your body and mind health. This posture improves focus and balance but also boosts your energy levels.

You should incorporate this exercise into your yoga routine. It relieves stress and anxiety by clearing your mind. It doesn't elevate your heart rate as much. But it is a great warm-up pose for more difficult ones to come.

You will get very toned leg muscles when doing the tree pose. Plus it strengthens the ankles, the abdominals, and visceral muscles. It is a good stretch for the hips too. Focus your gaze on a single point to find equilibrium.

Here is how to do Tree Pose or Vrikshasana:

  1. Get in the Tadasana pose.
  2. Shift your body weight onto one leg.
  3. Bend your knee.
  4. Place your foot on the inner thigh.
  5. Open your hips as wide as you can.
  6. Lift your arms overhead.
  7. Join your hands together.
  8. Repeat with the other foot.

  

6. King Pigeon pose or Rajakapotasana

king pigeon yoga exercises weight loss

 

 The King pigeon pose is a more advanced variation of the classic pigeon pose. It demands more flexibility from the thighs and hips. I recommend your practice Kapotasana for a few weeks regularly before attempting this posture.


The king pigeon pose benefits are quite the same as the previous pose. This exercise opens the chest, hips, and groin. Plus, it strengthens the back and the torso.

Here is how to do King Pigeon pose or Rajakapotasana:

  1. From the pigeon pose, lift your chest into a backbend.
  2. Bend the back leg.
  3. Look back and keep the chin up vertical.
  4. Reach back with your hands.
  5. Grab your foot.
  6. Repeat on the other side.

   

7. Accomplished pose or Siddhasana

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The accomplished pose is a gentle meditative position. It influences the groin, thighs, and hips positively. It is also used for breathing exercises. Beginners can practice this posture easily with little preparation.

Siddhasana has health benefits for circulation and inner peace. Keeping the back straight makes strengthening the spine possible with this asana. Plus, it teaches focus, concentration, and discipline.

This seated position is very rewarding and promotes weight loss. You learn to control, self-realization, and moderation which will influence your diet.

Here is how to do Accomplished pose or Siddhasana:

  1. Sit down and stretch out your legs.
  2. Bend the knees and place both ankles on top of the other.
  3. Straighten your spine.
  4. Let the knees touch the floor.
  5. Rest your hands on your knees.

  

8. Bound Angle Pose or Baddha Konasana

bound angle yoga exercises weight loss

 

This pose is a great hip-opening yoga exercise. It also strengthens your groin and thighs. Plus it increases flexibility in the knees and inner thighs.

I recommend that you keep practicing and master the bound angle pose before moving on to more difficult meditative poses. Furthermore, it opens the lower back, straighten the spine, and stimulates the abdominals.

Practice this asana regularly for positive effects on the reproductive function and blood pressure. Be careful and slow while doing this asana to avoid injury of the lower limbs.

Here is how to do Bound Angle Pose or Baddha Konasana:

  1. Sit down on the mat.
  2. Stretch the legs outwards.
  3. Bend the knees and meet the soles of the feet together.
  4. Straighten your back.
  5. Pull your heels to the perineum with your hands.

 

9. Standing Forward Bend or Uttanasana

standing bend yoga exercises weight loss

 

Uttanasana is a great stretching yoga exercise. It provides a complete stretch of the calves and hamstrings. This pose is an inversion. Practice it to increase the blood flow to the upper body and the brain.

It might be difficult to do for beginners at first. If you don't have the necessary flexibility yet, don't place your hands on the floor. Keep your back straight and reach as low as you can instead.

It is a great asana for overall blood circulation. It will sharpen your cognitive functions, freshen up your face, and regulate your hormonal system.

Here is how to do Standing Forward Bend or Uttanasana:

  1. From Tadasana, reach down with your hands.
  2. Keep your back straight.
  3. Place your hands as low as possible on your legs or the floor near your feet.
  4. Hold the position for maximum benefits.

  

 10. Seated Forward Bend or Paschimottanasana

seated bend yoga exercises weight loss

 

This is a safer forward bend than the previous pose. But it is more difficult to do as it requires more flexibility. It is a powerful asana with many benefits.

Please avoid this pose if you are pregnant, if you have asthma or if you suffer from sciatica. Proceed with caution if you have difficulty bending your back.

You will get a deep stretch of the back and leg muscles by practicing this pose. It improves circulation and flexibility of the hips and thighs. Release and let go of any tension while doing this posture.

Here is how to do Seated Forward Bend or Paschimottanasana:

  1. Sit down and extend your legs.
  2. Keep your feet together.
  3. Bend forward.
  4. Keep the legs and back straight.
  5. Touch your forehead to the knees.
  6. Reach as far as you can with your hands.

 

 

11. Triangle Pose or Trikonasana

triangle yoga exercises weight loss

 

The triangle pose improves the flexibility of the legs and spine. It cures back pain, neck, shoulders, and knees stiffness. This pose is great to tone the legs, ankles, back, and abdominals.

Furthermore, doing Trikonasana regularly improves circulation and abdominal organ function. Plus, it stimulates the nervous system and encourages weight loss with better digestion.

There are many variations of the triangle yoga pose. Begin with the one you feel the most comfortable doing and progress at your rhythm.

Here is how to do Triangle Pose or Trikonasana:

  1. Stand with your legs wide apart.
  2. Keep your legs straight and knees unbent.
  3. Spread out your arms to the sides.
  4. Reach your right foot with your right hand.
  5. Keep your thorax extended.



12. Plow pose or Halasana

plow pose yoga exercises weight loss

 The plow pose is an inverted pose that works the cervical spine. Make sure to perform this asana correctly to avoid putting too much stress on the spine. 


When done with care, this posture stretches the hamstrings, thighs, and calves deeply. Plus, it stimulates the abdominals and digestive system. It is one of the recommended yoga exercises for weight loss.

Some beginners may want to use support for the legs like a chair or blocks to prevent injury. It's known to relieve insomnia, stress, and fatigue. So practice it often to reap its benefits.

Here is how to do Plow pose or Halasana:

  1. Lie on the mat.
  2. Lift the legs.
  3. Support your hips and back with your hands.
  4. Place the legs behind the head.
  5. Keep the back perpendicular to the floor.



13. Extended Side Angle Pose or Utthita Parsvakonasana

side angle yoga exercises weight loss


This pose is great to strengthen the legs' muscles, knees, and ankles. It is also used to stretch the hips and groin. The twisting of the spine will stimulate your spinal nerves.

Furthermore, Utthita Parsvakonasana releases stress and tension in the abdominals. Plus, it improves balance greatly, while opening the chest and shoulders.

Here is how to do Extended Side Angle Pose or Utthita Parsvakonasana:

  1. Stand with feet apart.
  2. Bend one knee over the ankle.
  3. Keep the back straight and rotate the torso.
  4. Extend one arm straight up.
  5. Reach the floor with the other arm.
  6. Repeat on the other side.

 

14. Chair Pose or Utkatasana

The chair pose will build you strong thigh and lower back muscles. This is a powerful posture to increase strength in the lower limbs. Plus, it will grow your focus, concentration, and confidence.

Hold the position as long as you can to make it worth it. Its other benefits include better balance, stamina, and stability. Utkatasana reinforces the back region and liberates from spinal pain.

Furthermore, it is known to strengthen the lower body while stretching the upper back. The chair pose also improves the overall health and energy of the body.

Here is how to do Chair Pose or Utkatasana:

  1. Begin in Mountain pose.
  2. Keep the feet close together.
  3. Bend the knees and squat down.
  4. Let the hips above the knee level.
  5. Lengthen the spine.
  6. Bring your arms up.
  7. Hold. 


15. Revolved Chair Pose or Parivrtta Utkatasana

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This is one of the most awesome yoga exercises for weight loss. It boosts your heart rate, metabolism, and reduces body fat. Plus, it builds strength and length in the whole body.

The twisting of the back stimulates the spines and visceral muscles. It improves blood flow, digestion, heart, and diaphragm function. Furthermore, stability and balance will increase.

It's quite a challenging position. Practice the chair pose before. You will need strong hips, thighs, and buttocks to accomplish this pose.

Here is how to do Revolved Chair Pose or Parivrtta Utkatasana:

  1. Start in the chair pose.
  2. Join your hands together on your chest.
  3. Twist your torso.
  4. Bring your right elbow to the outside of your right thigh.
  5. Look towards the sky.
  6. Repeat on the other side

 

16. Warrior III or Virabhadrasana III

warrior 3 pose yoga exercises weight loss


This variation of the warrior pose tones the leg and lower back muscles. It improves stamina, agility, balance, and builds the abdominals at the same time.

Practice the other poses before attempting this one. You will need strong thighs, abdominal, and spinal muscles to perform this asana.

Here is how to do Warrior III or Virabhadrasana III:
  1. Begin with Tadasana.
  2. Raise the arms.
  3. Spread the legs.
  4. Lift your back leg and bend forward.
  5. Keep your arms near your ears.
  6. Join your hand.
  7. Keep arms and back leg parallel to the mat.
  8. Switch sides.


17. Boat pose or Navasana

boat pose yoga exercises weight loss


The boat pose makes strong abdominals, leg, and lower back muscles a reality. It improves digestion and organ function in the abdomen. It is a great way to increase core strength and burn calories.

Plus, this posture promotes healthy regulation of the thyroid and prostate. It also boosts metabolic function, focus, and relieves anxiety and stress.

Here is how to do Boat pose or Navasana:
  1. Begin seated.
  2. Extend the legs forward.
  3. Keep the feet joined together.
  4. Keep your back straight.
  5. Lengthen the spine.
  6. Lift your legs and chest.
  7. Raise your arms.
  8. Do not round the spine.
  9. Keep your legs straight.

 

18. Lord Shiva pose or Natarajasana

dancer pose yoga exercises weight loss


Lord of the Dance, God Shiva, King Dancer pose or Natarajasana is an intense balance posture. It is a full-body asana that improves overall body strength.

Many muscles and articulations engage throughout the whole body to maintain this pose. It develops the hips, abdominals, chest, legs, thighs, calves, spine, and shoulders.

Natarajasana demands high levels of stamina, concentration, stability, and focus. Plus, it stretches the thorax, back, and legs.

Here is how to do Lord Shiva pose or Natarajasana:
  1. Stand in Tadasana.
  2. Raise one knee and one foot.
  3. Keep the back straight.
  4. Grab the foot with one hand and lift it up and back.
  5. Extend the leg and the arm.
  6. Repeat with the other foot.


19. Cobra pose or Bhujangasana

cobra pose yoga exercises weight loss


This pose is a basic beginner posture. It strengthens the spine and stretches the chest. Don't overarch the back or neck. The cobra pose is great to build firm buttocks and abdominals.

Here is how to do Cobra pose or Bhujangasana:
  1. Start on your tummy.
  2. Press into the mat with the top of your feet.
  3. Keep them joined together.
  4. Lengthen the spine and lift your chest.
  5. Engage the core muscles.
  6. Use the back muscles to lift further.
  7. Keep the hands down.

 

20. Wheel pose or Chakrasana

wheel pose yoga exercises weight loss

This pose is a backbend. You will acquire shoulders, spine, and torso flexibility while practicing this asana. It is a great pose to strengthen the back and leg muscles.

It helps relieve any tension from sitting too long and is known to boosts energy. Plus, it improves blood flow and overall circulation.

Here is how to do Wheel pose or Chakrasana:

  1. Lie on the floor on your back.
  2. Bend your knees and elbows.
  3. Place your feet under the inner thighs.
  4. Place your hands to the side of your head.
  5. Press and lift off the mat.
  6. Keep the arms and legs straight.
  7. Release the head.


21. Extended Big Toe pose or Utthita Hasta Padangustasana

big toe pose yoga exercises weight loss



Do this asana to open the hips and shoulders. It is an effective pose to improve balance and focus while stretching the thighs.

Here is how to do Extended Big Toe pose or Utthita Hasta Padangustasana:

  1. In Tadasana, shift your weight on one leg.
  2. Raise the other and grab your big toe.
  3. Straighten the arms, legs, and spine.
  4. Extend the leg forward or to the side. 



22. Balancing Table pose or Dandayamana Bharmanasana

table pose yoga exercises weight loss


This posture improves balance and concentration. Plus, it is a great way to build core strength and lengthen the spine.

The table pose is a beginner-friendly asana. Try to hold the posture as long as you can to make it more challenging. Switch sides and repeat.

Here is how to do Balancing Table pose or Dandayamana Bharmanasana:

  1. Begin on all four.
  2. Raise one leg and extend.
  3. Keep it parallel to the mat.
  4. Raise the opposite arm and straighten it if you feel comfortable.
  5. Hold. 


23. Half Lord of the Fishes Pose or Ardha Matsyendrasana

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This pose provides a deep twist of the spine. In a seated position, you will tone the spinal nerves and ligaments. Always make sure to lengthen the spine as much as possible. Keep your back straight up.

Furthermore, this posture improves digestion by massaging the abdominal organs. It helps to maintain visceral organ and muscle health. It's recommended for weight loss to improve kidneys, liver, and pancreas function.

Here is how to do Half Lord of the Fishes Pose or Ardha Matsyendrasana:

  1. Place one foot on the mat outside the opposite leg.
  2. Twist your torso towards the top leg.
  3. Keep the spine extended back straight.
  4. Use the arms to help the torsion.
  5. Many variations exist. Pick the most comfortable one.


24. Plank pose or Phalakasana

plank yoga exercises weight loss


You will build arm, wrist, shoulder, core, and back strength with this posture. It is a basic pose but still very powerful to lose weight. You can move on to a more advanced position if you can hold it without difficulty.

It is a good warm-up pose at the start of every yoga practice. Plus, it is also used as a transition between other postures. Practicing the plank pose is worth it to train your body and your mind.

Here is how to do Plank pose or Phalakasana:
On all four, place the hands under the shoulders.

  1. Extend the leg back.
  2. Keep the feet joined together.
  3. Engage core and leg muscles.
  4. Lengthen the spine.
  5. Keep back and legs aligned. 


25. Low Plank pose or Chaturanga Dandasana

low plank yoga exercises weight loss

 

The low plank pose builds strong arms, shoulders, and core muscles. It will raise your heart rate, improve blood flow, and metabolism. The planks are excellent yoga exercises for weight loss.

Chaturanga Dandasana also tones the wrists, and lower back. It is very good preparation for arm balances. Practice this asana as often as possible if you are looking to progress.

Here is how to do Low Plank pose or Chaturanga Dandasana:

  1. Begin in plank pose.
  2. Keep back and legs aligned.
  3. Lower your body to the floor.
  4. Engage your abdominal and leg muscles.
  5. Keep your elbows near your body.


26. Dolphin pose or Ardha Pincha Mayurasana

dolphin weight loss yoga pose

One of the most amazing yoga exercises for weight loss. Dolphin pose strengthens the arms, shoulders, leg muscles. Plus, it is a deep stretch for the calves and hamstrings.

This inverted posture provides good preparation for more difficult inversions. Practice it regularly to build enough focus, stamina, and strength in the upper body.

Don't be afraid to try it out and master it. Going upside down for the first time can be quite intimidating but it is worth it. Dolphin pose is a good place to start.

Here is how to do Dolphin pose or Ardha Pincha Mayurasana:

  1. On all four, lower your elbows to the mat.
  2. Keep them under your shoulders.
  3. Lift your knees off the floor.
  4. Straighten your legs.
  5. Align your ears with your upper arms.
  6. Release. 


27. Downward-Facing Dog or Adho Mukha Svanasana

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Downward-Facing Dog is one of the most popular yoga postures. It's widely known to stretch the whole body. Practice it to increase the flexibility of the spine, shoulders, legs.

It rejuvenates the whole body, improves circulation, digestion, and the immune system. This asana is awesome to build strength and calm the mind.

Here is how to do Downward-Facing Dog or Adho Mukha Svanasana:

  1. Start on your hands and knees.
  2. Stretch the elbows.
  3. Lift your knees off the floor.
  4. Lengthen your spine and press the mat.
  5. Push your chest towards your thighs.
  6. Engage core and leg muscles.


28. Side Plank pose or Vasisthasana

side plank yoga exercises weight loss

 

Build your wrists, arms, shoulders, and core strength with the side plank pose. It is a good pose to acquire balance, stamina, and stability. It prepares for more complicated arm balances.

This yoga exercise is suitable for all levels of students. Hold the pose as long as you can for maximum benefits.

Here is how to do Side Plank pose or Vasisthasana:

  1. Start in the plank pose.
  2. Shift your weight on one arm.
  3. Lift the other arm.
  4. Look up above your hand.
  5. Keep the arms parallel to the line of the shoulders.


29. Upward Salute or Urdhva Hastasana

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 This is a very simple stretch. But every yogi needs to master the Upward Salute before moving on to more advanced yoga exercises for weight loss. 


Here is how to do Upward Salute or Urdhva Hastasana:

  1. Begin in Tadasana.
  2. Lengthen the spine.
  3. Raise the arms overhead.
  4. Join your hands.
  5. Keep your legs, back, and arms straight.
  6. Keep your upper arms near your ears.
  7. Extend as much as possible while breathing deeply.


30. Handstand or Adho Mukha Vrksasana

handstand yoga exercises weight loss


The Handstand can be practiced against a wall for beginners. The fully unsupported handstand requires wrists, arms, shoulders, and core strength with a lot of balancing.

It improves blood circulation, strength, balance, and stamina. It is known to calm the mind and relieve stress.

Here is how to do Handstand or Adho Mukha Vrksasana:

  1. In Downward-Facing Dog, walk towards your hands.
  2. Bend the knee and lift one leg.
  3. Straighten the leg and find balance.
  4. Lift the other leg and hold.
  5. Relax and breathe.

  

The best yoga exercises for weight loss tones the body and improves its overall health. By practicing these yoga poses, you will build strong and dense muscles that participate in burning more calories.

The side benefits include improved balance, flexibility, stamina, circulation, digestion, focus, concentration, and mental clarity. Plus, it helps you be more mindful of your choices and make healthy lifestyle changes.

Choose the postures you feel the most comfortable with. Work from there and progress towards mastering them all. These exercises are all suitable for beginners. You might want to learn one pose a day when starting.

Over a month, you can then build your daily workout routine and see weight loss results. The yoga poses have plenty of health benefits for your body and mind health. Consistency is the key to maximize them.

About the Author: Alex Assoune

Alex Assoune Alex Assoune (MS) is a global health and environmental advocate. He founded Panaprium to inspire others with conscious living, ethical, and sustainable fashion. Alex has worked in many countries to address social and environmental issues. He speaks three languages and holds two Master of Science degrees in Engineering from SIGMA and IFPEN schools.

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