Yoga has traced its journey from the pre Vedic period of the Indian history till today’s time. The importance of yoga had been realised by the people, saints and kings of that time even. With the evolving times, yoga still continues to hold and maintain its position. Yoga undoubtedly can be recognised as one of the safest and effective methods of weight loss. With number of patients of obesity on a rise yoga is the most reliable method of weight loss. Although the results take time to appear as compared to the other methods but the results are long lasting. The word asana can be defined as the particular position of the body, which can be associated with yoga. In simple words we can say that asana is the name of special posture which is done in yoga. Yoga brings together the benefits of exercise and meditation together. This is a perfect blend of both the methods. The best part is that once you have learnt the asana from a trained professional you can do it at home. As we all know that yoga is a combination of meditation and exercise, it also helps to reduce the stress levels. The yoga asana can be divided into three main postures
1. Standing Asanas
The standing asanas are generally performed while standing. The main types of standing asana are
Ardha Chandra asana:
This posture is meant to tome the inner and upper thighs, buttocks. It also helps to reduce the flab on the sides of your tummy. To do this pose one needs to stand on the mat with the feet together. Hands are to be raised above the head and palms are to be clasped while reaching for the ceiling. Slowly while exhaling start bending sideways from your hips. The hands need to be kept together while doing this. Always remember to keep the elbows straight and not to bend forward. After inhaling come to the standing pose and repeat the same for the other side. Patients with blood pressure digestive disorders and spinal injury should avoid the pose.
This pose is an excellent way to lose the extra flab around the tummy. One needs to stand with the feet together and hand sideways. Next the right leg should be extended forward and the left backwards. The right knee should be in at 90 degrees to the floor. Torso should be bent towards the right knee. The left foot should be twisted and turned to provide an extra support. The body should be raised upwards in a way that the back forms an arch. Stay in this pose till you are comfortable. Slowly reverse the steps which you have done while exhaling breath. People with blood pressure, knee trouble should avoid this pose.
In this asana instead of raising the hands above the head, torso needs to be twisted sideways and hands should be raised on either of the side. Head should be turned in such a way that eyes are facing the direction of right hand. Avoid this pose if you are suffering from diarrhoea.
These asanas are performed while sitting. The major types of asana in this category are:
This asana has been designed to increase the capacity of lungs. Sit with your legs stretched and erect spine. Left leg is to be bent and the heel of left foot should be kept beside the right foot. Now, the right leg should be taken over the left knee and the left hand should be placed on the right knee and the right hand should go behind. Waist, shoulders and neck should be twisted in the right direction. Continue gentle breathing in and out. To come out release the right hand, waist, chest and neck and sit straight relaxed.
Kapal bhati pranayama
This pose strengthens the muscles of abdomen and stomach. Also it helps to get a flat tummy. For this you need to sit comfortably while keeping the spine erect, palms on the knees. Air should be exhaled through the nose and stomach should be pulled inwards toward the spine. Quickly contract the stomach muscles and exhale. Basically stomach muscles are to do the regular push and pull cycle. People with hernia and high blood pressure should avoid.
3. Lying Asanas
These are generally done while lying down on the floor. The major type of asana is:
It is a great pose to strengthen the thighs, shoulders and abs. It helps to relax the mind and relieve the symptoms of menopause. One needs to lie on the floor with the feet completely touching the floor. Now while exhaling raise the body in such a way that neck and head are flat on the mat and rest of the body in air. Hands can provide extra support. Do not perform this if you have a spinal injury.