If you are looking to speed up your metabolism to lose weight, yoga may not seem like the best option because of its gentle stretches and slow pace, but looks can be deceiving. Yoga has been proven effective for both speeding metabolism to aid weight loss and slowing metabolism to provide relaxation, depending on the poses used. Because yoga improves circulation and digestion, it increases your metabolic rate. In fact, according to Dr. Oz in an article for Oprah.com, doing a little yoga each morning can double your metabolic rate.
Twisted Chair Pose
The twisting in this pose helps to stimulate both circulation and digestion. For the twisted chair pose, stand with your feet and legs together and your back straight. Bend your knees to slowly lower your hips and back as if you were sitting in a chair. Bring your hands together in prayer position with palms pressed together in front of your chest. Twist your spine to bring your right elbow to rest on your left knee, keeping your chest lifted. Hold this position for 30 to 60 seconds before returning to standing and executing the pose on the other side.
The bow pose boosts your metabolism and your energy. To do this pose, lie face down on the floor with your hands down beside you and your palms facing up. Keep your legs hip-width apart and bend your knees, lifting your feet toward your bottom. Reach down and grab your ankles. Relax your shoulders down and away from your ears. Lift your heels to pull them away from your body and raise your chest from the floor. Hold the bow pose for 30 to 60 seconds.
This pose is an inversion and therefore improves circulation. To execute the plow pose, lie on your back with your legs extended and your arms by your sides. Press your palms into the floor and lift your legs, bringing them over your head. If you are able to rest your toes on the ground above your head, do so and clasp your hands together, rolling your shoulder blades towards one another. If you are unable to keep your clasped hands on the floor with your arms extended straight, place your hands on your back for support and stability. Hold the plow pose for 30 to 60 seconds.
Shouder Stand Pose
The shoulder stand is an inverted pose which, like other inversions, improves circulation. To perform a shoulder stand, lie on your back with your arms beside your body. you can place a cushion or folded towel under your head and shoulders for comfort and support if needed. Press your hands against the floor as you raise your knees toward your chin and hold your thighs on your chest. Gently shift your weight back into your shoulders and brace your back with your hands. Extend your legs, one at a time, toward the ceiling, pointing your toes. Hold this pose for 30 to 60 seconds.
An American writer living in the United Kingdom, Christy Mitchinson began writing professionally in 2000, during her career in laboratory science, pathology and research. She has authored training materials, standard operating procedures and patient/clinician information leaflets. Mitchinson is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in English literature and creative writing with The Open University.