July 18, 2024
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Yoga

6 Yoga Asanas to Meet Your Fitness Goals

Can yoga asanas help you achieve your fitness goals? Yes. We cannot oversell that, so here it goes: yoga can help improve muscle tone, balance, muscle strength, flexibility and endurance – depending on the kind of yoga you do.

Yoga can be tailored to meet the needs of your body. You want to get some cardio exercise? Perform the Surya Namaskar 15 times. You want balance? Perform standing balance asanas. You want to relieve muscle tension? Go for simple Hatha yoga poses.

The best part is that yoga can help you relax and reduce stress. You dont need to believe us: read it for yourself here. Yoga is for everybody and every purpose. There are yoga poses you can practice daily to get a stronger back, to lead a healthy lifestyle, for anxiety and depression, yoga poses for beginners, to strengthen your arms, and more.

In this article, we will focus on the various yoga asanas you can perform daily to remain fit.

Yoga Asanas to Meet Your Fitness Goals

If your fitness goals are increased flexibility, improved muscle strength, endurance, toned look and healthier metabolic rate, perform the following six yoga asanas daily:

1) Downward Facing Dog Pose

This is one of the best yoga asanas to start a session. It relieves tension in the hamstrings – everybody has tight hamstrings – and stretches the entire body. It improves flexibility, blood circulation, calms the nervous system, and strengthens the arms and shoulders.

Instructions:

  • Begin by placing both hands, palms down, on the mat in front of you; your hands should be slightly in front of your shoulders.
  • Place your knees directly beneath your hips on the ground.
  • Lift your knees off the ground and buttocks and hips towards the ceiling as you exhale.
  • Stretch your heels down towards the floor, and push the tops of your thighs back.
  • Keep your head down and in line with your upper arms and not hanging down.
  • If the lower back is rounding, try bending your knees to help lengthen it.

2) Vrikshasana

This deceivingly simple yoga asana is an excellent one for boosting body balance. This asana stretches the entire body, from heels to fingertips, and especially works the obliques.

Instructions:

  • To begin this pose, stand straight.
  • Bring your hands together in prayer, and lift them over your head.
  • Maintain your balance on your right leg.
  • Bend your left knee, and press your left foot against the inner thigh of your right leg.
  • Hold the position for 30 seconds. Repeat with the other leg.

3) Baby Pigeon Pose

This one is an excellent stretch for relieving tight hips, glutes, and lower back. It’s a much preferred exercise by runners and athletes for its hip-opening aspect.

Instructions:

  • Move your right knee forward between your hands while on all fours.
  • Slowly straighten your left leg behind you, as if doing a lunge, keeping the knee and top of the foot on the floor.
  • Rotate your right knee towards your right wrist, and lower it to the floor, with your right calf flat on the floor and right foot resting under the left groin.
  • Lower your upper body over the bent leg, either all the way to the floor or with your elbows resting on the floor.
  • Inhale and exhale slowly five times.
  • Push back on your left leg to stretch the calf muscles before switching sides.
  • Rep with your left leg bent and right leg straight.

4) Upward Facing Dog Pose

Want to get rid of the office slump? Perform this shoulder-opening yoga asana every day. It strengthens the wrists, arms and back while opening the chest, lungs, and heart.

Instructions:

  • Begin by lying face down on your mat, slightly lifted head and hands directly under your shoulders so that the tops of your feet are on the mat.
  • Point your toes.
  • Press through your hands and tops of your feet as you exhale, raising your body and legs off the ground till your arms are straight.

5) Chaturanga Dandasana

As it requires a lot of muscle activation and strength, the chaturanga dandasana is good for the entire body.

This yoga asana aligns the entire body and strengthens the erector spinae, which are the muscles on either side of the spine. That aids in the improvement of core strength, posture, and stability.

Instructions:

  • Enter a high plank pose by placing your wrists directly under your shoulders and keeping the elbows slightly bent.
  • Exhale by bending your elbows and lowering your shoulders to the same level as your elbows. Squeeze your elbows in close to your body.
  • Maintain a few inches of space between your upper body and the floor.
  • Look down, or slightly lift your head.
  • Spread your arms across your chest and upper back.
  • Exhale and return to a plank or downward facing dog. Alternatively, drop your knees, and rest in the child’s pose.

6) Child’s Pose

The last pose on this list is a restorative, relaxing and calming yoga asana. The child’s pose helps relax the mind and body, and increases flexibility.

Instructions:

  • Simply bend your knees, and lower your buttocks to your heels as you bring your chest towards the floor over your knees from the downward facing dog pose.
  • Lower your shoulders and gaze to the ground.
  • Place your arms along your sides and palms down, or fold your arms under your brow to support your head.
  • Breathe and relax for as long as necessary.

Takeaway

Simply put: practicing yoga daily will make you feel good. You can start your day with a centered mind and refreshed body by performing the aforementioned yoga asanas. Not only does yoga relieve tension in muscles, but it also strengthens and tones them.

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