9 Yoga Poses to Tone Those Abs
Do you want to get rid of that belly fat and have a toned, flat stomach? Here are some yoga poses you can do to work those abs!
There has been proof that yoga might have been conceived about 5,000 to 10,000 years ago. It has since become a mixture of modern and ancient practices that are made to promote health, fitness, and well-being. Yoga is a practice that will completely change your lifestyle, that’s one of its many benefits and why people are dedicated to it. While doing yoga, you get into a peaceful, meditative, and enlightened state of mind that will leak into your everyday life. This is especially good for those who are stressed or anxious a lot. Stress has been proven to be very bad for the health, and yoga can help you get inner peace that will help you deal with that stress in healthy ways. Ever wonder why yogis live so long? This is exactly the reason! Aside from that, yoga will keep you super fit. It takes a lot of strength and flexibility to be able to do the poses. It’s extremely effective for losing weight and toning your muscles. If you’re already a practicing yogi, there may be some areas that you want to tone up or concentrate on more than others. One of the hardest muscles to tone or to lose weight off of, especially for women, are the stomach or ab muscles. Don’t worry, though! If you practice yoga on a regular basis, all you have to do is incorporate a few poses that work your abs into your regular routine. Here are a few postures you can do to target those ab muscles:
For this pose, sit on the floor with your legs extended out in front of you. Slowly bend your knees and point your toes. Make sure that your toes are the only part of your foot that are touching the ground. Place your hands slightly behind you, spread out your fingers, lean back a little and put your weight on your fingertips. Then, lift your legs completely of the floor until they are parallel to the floor with your knees still bent. Form a kind of “V” with your thighs and stomach and make sure your core is tight. Then slowly lift your hands of the floor and extend them to the front with your palms up. Place them on either side of your lifted shins and keep your balance by tightening your core. For the last part, straighten your legs completely in the air to form a “V” shape with your whole body. Hold this pose for 20 seconds or a minute to strengthen and tone your core.
Half Boat Pose
From boat pose, slightly lower both your torso and your legs but don’t let them touch the floor just yet. Keep your arms extended by your side and feel the burn in your ab muscles as you balance yourself in this pose. Hold this for 20 seconds to a minute to really give your abs a workout.
Go on all fours, hands and knees, for this one. Then, slowly bend your back and rest your chin against your chest. Tighten your core muscles and keep your back slightly hunched to feel the burn in your stomach. Hold this pose for 20 seconds to a minute.
Stand up straight with your legs together. Sweep your arms outward and put your palms together overhead. Then, slowly bend your knees as if you are sitting on an invisible chair. Make sure that your knees don’t extend farther out than your toes. Tighten your ab muscles and keep them tense. Hold this pose for 20 seconds to a minute.
Lie down with your belly to the floor. Then, push up with your arms and your toes. Straighten your arms and let your hands and toes be the only parts of your body touching the floor. Tense your ab muscles to stay in this position. Hold this for 20 seconds to a minute.
Four Limbed Staff Pose
From plank pose, slowly bend your elbows until they’re parallel to the floor. Form a kind of mid-pushup position with this pose. Keep your toes and hands the only parts of your body that are touching the floor. Tighten your ab muscles to balance yourself in this position. Hold this pose for 20 seconds to 1 minute.
Side Plank Pose
From plank pose, carefully cross one leg over the other and place the side of your foot on the floor. Put your weight on that foot and slowly put the other one on top of it. Once you’ve successfully put both your feet to face the side, slowly lift one arm up and extend it toward the ceiling and face toward the side your feet are facing. Look up at your hand and keep the arm with your weight on it straight and strong. Hold this pose for 20 seconds or a minute and then do the other side.
Start out on your hands and knees. Slowly go down on your elbows and press your palms down to the floor. Then, lift your knees up and straighten your legs slowly while pressing your forearms on the floor. Try as best as you can to press your heels down to the floor, but if you can’t you can just put your weight on your toes. Feel your core muscles contracting. Hold this pose for 20 seconds to a minute.
Side Reclining Leg Lift
Lie down on your side, place your elbow on the floor, and support your head with your hand. Then, slowly lift one leg up straight out to the side and grab your toes with your free hand. Feel your ab muscles contracting. Hold this pose for 20 seconds to a minute and then do the opposite side.
Tone That Core
In yoga, core strength is one of the most important things you can have. If you still have a fairly “beginner” core or if you simply want to tone up and strengthen it, incorporate these ab strengthening poses in your regular yoga routine. Pretty soon you’ll have yourself a tight, toned, and strong stomach that will not only look good but also give you incredible core strength.
Sherlock, H. (n.d.). Vinyasa Flow Yoga Poses. Retrieved from Helen Sherlock Yoga: http://www.helensherlock.com/vinyasa-flow-poses.php
Yoga Journal. (n.d.). Core Yoga Poses. Retrieved from Yoga Journal: http://www.yogajournal.com/category/poses/types/core/