Building and maintaining strength is a lifelong pursuit. To increase your strength, you have to find a fitness regime that you love and are motivated to do consistently. If you don’t feel going to the gym or you simply want to add a bit more to you, yoga is an amazing alternative for strength training. Yoga is one of the best ways to build muscles without having to worry about going to the gym or purchasing expensive gym memberships, which you hardly use. You can practice yoga anywhere and any time, even from the comforts of your own home. While many people equate yoga with inner peace and light exercises, it is much more than that. There are some postures that can help you shape your body in a way that you desire.
The postures below target your core strength and stability, as well as your hips and hamstrings. As you move through each pose, be methodical in your positioning and focus on controlling your breath. Choose to move through your fullest range of motion to ensure you get the most bang for your buck.
These routines are just generally suggested which usually suit everybody time, but if you find the reps too tiring or exhausting then feel free to adjust and do it at your own pace. Make sure you analyse your fitness level before starting a new routine. All the below-given yoga routines help in stretching the muscles and strengthening the core. Through this, your muscles will stretch which will enable them to get stronger and more defined over time.
Alternating Tiger’s Pose
Start at the top of a push-up. Press through your palms as you draw your front ribs and belly button up towards your spine. Keep your legs strong as you exhale and draw your right knee towards your nose. Hold here for a slow count of five as you continue to breathe in and out through the nose and press through your palms.
This helps in strengthening the core body and also proceeds to stimulate the nervous, lymphatic and reproductive systems.
Then, on an inhale, return your right foot to the top of a pushup and switch side. Continue like this for 40 total reps. Rest as needed to maintain strong form.
Forearm Side Plank
From your hands and knees, place your right forearm on the floor with the right elbow underneath your right shoulder. Stack your left foot on top of your right foot and reach your left arm up. Squeeze your inner thighs together, firm your belly and press down through your right forearm. Hold here for one minute as you breathe slowly in and out through your nose and then switch sides.
This posture helps to strengthen and tighten the muscles around the spine which corrects your posture.
Complete three total rounds.
Start seated with your feet on the floor and your hands behind your knees. Sit up tall and lift your chest. Lean back slightly as you pick your feet up off the floor. The start by reaching and stretching your arms forward and try hugging your belly towards your spine. Make sure that your knees are bent or your legs are extended for High Boat Pose and inhale.
From High Boat Pose, lower your legs and torso into Low Boat Pose and exhale. Lift back up into High Boat and then to Low Boat. This pose actually takes a lot of effort from your side to life your back up. In turn, it tones and strengthens your back muscles, and also tones your hamstring. This one really helps you build your core and upper body strength.
Repeat for three sets of 20 reps (one rep equals High Boat into Low Boat).
Begin in a prone position with your belly on the floor and your legs and arms extended. Squeeze your inner ankles and inner thighs together. On an inhale, lift your chest and your heels, keeping your legs strong and straight. Squeeze your butt and pull your biceps back by your ears. Hold here, breathing in and out through your nose, for 10 seconds. Exhale to release the pose.
Repeat 10 times.
Alternating Warrior III
Begin in a standing pose with your feet beneath you. Inhale to raise your arms overhead so your biceps line up with your ears. Shift your weight to your left foot and exhale. As you begin to hinge forward at the hips, draw your right leg up. Square your hips down towards the floor and pull your belly and front ribs in tight. Create downward pressure through your standing foot and the upward lift in your chest. Hold Warrior III for three slow breaths in and out through your nose and then, on an inhale, stand. Switch sides.
This amazing posture helps you by stabilising your entire body. It helps in integrating the muscles in your core, arms, and legs.
Continue like this for 20 total reps.
Lie on your back and place your feet flat on the floor, hip-distance apart, and close enough that you can touch the heels with your middle fingers. Drive down through your feet as you inhale and lift the hips up. Keep your feet planted but try to draw the heels towards your butt. Hold for a slow count of three and then exhale to release the hips back down.
This pose helps to rejuvenate your legs and shoulders while making your digestion faster and better.
Repeat for 20 total reps.
Start by standing with your feet about shoulder-distance apart and your toes pointed forward. If mobility is an issue, you can turn your toes out slightly. Send your hips back and down as you keep your heels flat and your chest up. Bring the hips below the line of your knees. Hold the bottom of your squat for a count of five and drive through your heels to stand.
This asana helps in toning your lower body and core. It also helps in digestions and quickens your metabolism.
Repeat for 50 more reps.
First, come to a standing position then step your feet out wide. Turn your toes out. On an exhale, bend your knees and lower your hips to the line of your knees. Press your knees back as you firm your belly and draw your outer hips down. Hold for a slow count of five and then inhale to stand.
This poses open up your chest and hips while stretching your thighs. It also elongates your spine
Repeat for 40 more reps.