5 Basic Yoga Exercises to Help Lose Belly Fat
Belly fat is among the most stubborn areas of fat to burn off; we all know this. An unhealthy diet, low levels of exercise and high levels of stress can all contribute to the widening of our abdomens and the build up up belly fat, and this can put us at risk of serious health problems in the long run. There are unfortunately no shortcuts to getting rid of it, and targeted fat burning for specific parts of the body is not possible, but it’s not all doom and gloom.
Yoga for belly fat burning can be highly effective when done regularly and in tandem with a balanced diet; all it takes is about 15 minutes per day. Certain yoga poses work the abdominal muscles and your core to help tone your tummy and burn fat at a gradual, healthy pace, while also working your entire body and helping to relieve the stresses of the day. All in all, yoga is very good for your tummy, and here are the 5 best basic poses, or asanas, to add to your daily routine for fat loss:
As well as strengthening the abdominal muscles and helping to burn belly fat, the cobra yoga pose will help keep your spine flexible and strengthen your back for excellent posture. This pose is so named because you become like a cobra with your head raised, ready to strike.
How to do the Cobra pose:
– Lie on your belly with your legs stretched out behind you, toes pointed to touch the floor
– Place the palms flat on the floor, level with your shoulder and place your chin on the floor
– Inhale while slowly raising your chest up, bending backwards as much as you can
– Hold the cobra pose for 15–30 secs, or as long as you can
– Then exhale and slowly bring your entire body down to return to your starting position
– Repeat the pose 5 times, relaxing for 15 seconds between each move
The bow pose gives your back and entire body a really good stretch while strengthening your abdominal core significantly; perfect for yoga belly fat loss. Once you have built up your strength and stamina you can complete this pose by gently rocking back and forth on your belly, which gives your abdomen a great little massage and gets your digestive system nice and active in the process.
How to do the Bow pose:
– Lie on your belly with legs stretched out together, arms either side of your body
– Bend your knees, reach your arms back to the tops of your feet or ankles and hold them
– Inhale while raising your head and bending your torso backwards. At the same time, lift your legs off the floor as high as you can
– Hold the pose like this for 15–30 seconds and breathe normally
– Then exhale and slowly relax your body back to the starting position.
– Repeat 5 times with a 15 second break in between
The boat post is a tricky one to maintain, which means it’s an incredible workout for the abdominal muscles and ultimately helps you to fight that belly fat and flab. As well as being good for your belly, the boat pose also helps strengthen your back and leg muscles.
How to do the Boat Pose:
– Lie down on your back with legs together, toes pointed and arms at your sides facing down
– Inhale slowly and start raising your legs without bending your knees
– Make sure you keep your toes pointed, stretching your feet
– Raise your legs as high as you possibly can, keeping them together at all times
– Now raise both arms in front of you, keeping them straight and reaching toward your toes
– The aim is to end up with your body as close to a 45-degree angle as possible
– Breathe normally and hold the boat pose for at least 15 seconds
– Then exhale and slowly release, returning to the original position
– Repeat 5 times with a 15-second rest between each pose
The camel pose is often performed as a counter stretch to the boat pose, making it a great one to follow up with. The big backward stretch helps tone and sculpt your abdominal muscles while also releasing them from the tension of the boat pose. Bliss!
How to do the Camel Pose:
– Sit in a kneeling position, sit back on your heels, keep your back straight and place your hands on your thighs, palms facing down
– Slowly, lift your body from your knees so that you are now sitting with your entire body weight resting on your knees
– Your lower legs should still be on the floor with your heels facing upwards
– Exhale deeply and slowly and begin arching your back. One by one, reach your arms behind you and try to hold your ankles
– Tilt your head all the back until you experience a stretch in your belly
– Hold this pose for 15 seconds to begin with, or as long as you can while breathing normally
– Exhale and slowly relax your pose until you’re back to original kneeling position
– Repeat the camel pose 5 times, relaxing for 15 seconds between each
The plank is one of the simplest and most commonly recognised exercises, often featuring in HIIT workouts. It is also one of the most effective yoga poses for attacking belly fat, due to the large amount of work the abdominal muscles must do to maintain the pose. The plank also tones up your back, arms, thighs, shoulders and buttocks, so it’s a great all-rounder to finish off your workout with.
How to do the Plank pose:
– Start on your hands and knees, your hands should be placed directly under your shoulders and your knees should be directly under your hips
– Step your feet back one at a time, extending your legs behind you and placing your toes on the floor. Place your palms flat with your fingers spread
– Inhale and look ahead slightly so that your neck is aligned with your spine
– Hold your abdominal muscles in as tightly as you can
– Your body should now be forming a straight line from your heels to your head
– Hold the plank pose for 15–30 seconds or longer to get the best results
– Exhale and release the pose by slowly dropping your knees to the floor
– Repeat the plank post 5 times, relaxing for 15 seconds after each round
Some of these poses may not be suitable for anybody who suffers from high blood pressure, back or joint problems or women who are pregnant. Always check with your doctor before performing yoga if you’re unsure.
Performing yoga for belly fat loss is a deeply relaxing yet highly effective method of exercise. If you work it into your daily routine along with a balanced diet you will begin to see the positive effects within a matter of weeks. If you’re new to yoga, don’t forget to invest in a good quality yoga mat for performing your poses on.