The world over there is a lot of focus on weight loss. There are strength training and yoga programs, online diet plans and supplements which are available. Many could be useful for you. Some may not be. One can only try out and see what works for you. Also, what works for one individual need not work for another individual. So there is no common standard as such. The only discipline which works for hundred percent of all people, is Yoga.
Key Fitness Factor
Whichever form of exercise or routine you decide to take up, you need to know how it works and what is the impact on the body. The main part of the body which is crucial for physical fitness, internal health as well as weight loss, is the spine. The entire portion starting from the base of the brain at the back and going right down to the upper tip of your buttocks, is the backbone or the spine. We must remember that any exercise we do, this should not get strained a lot.
Stretching The Spine
There is one important factor for spine health. That is stretching on a regular basis. By regular basis, we mean a few times in the day. It has to be gentle and slow. Also, the spine needs to be stretched in six different ways. The best disciplines are those which incorporate all these six types in a gentle way. These six ways are:
- Upward stretch
- Side bend or side stretch
- Side twist or twisting on both sides
- Backward bend
- Forward bend
Link Between Spine And Weight Loss
When all these are done on a daily basis, the spine becomes supple and flexible. It improves body metabolism and can take on much more load, facilitating weight loss. It has been found that obesity and back or cervical problems are linked. If you are sedentary and do not exercise your spine, you start putting on weight and also get aches and orthopedic problems.
You may have also noticed that over weight persons sooner or later have some back or cervical related problem. This enhances other ancillary problems like sciatica and arthritis. To break this cycle, even if you are already over weight, start working on the spine first. The rest will automatically follow. Begin with gentle stretches of four types – upward, sideways, twist and backward. When you are fitter, you could start forward bends and much later, you may try inversions.
Combine Walking And Stretching
With this, start walking as much as you can. Walk in the morning or evening like an exercise. However, also be on your feet as much as you can. Walk when you talk on the phone or while doing chores. If you take public transport, get off one station or stop before and walk to your destination. A combination of stretching and walking is excellent for both; spine health and weight loss.
Practices For The Spine
There are many gentle practices for the spine. These can be done by anyone irrespective of health status or age. If you have no health problems, you could twist and bend a little more but more is not necessarily better. Let us look at some of the hatha yoga asanas which are very good:
- Tadasana or the palm tree pose.
- Tiryaka Tadasana or the swaying tree pose.
- Konasana or Trikonasana or side bending poses.
- Toe touching or angle pose.
- Standing Bhujangasana (cobra pose) & Standing Salabhasana (locust pose).
- Standing, seated or lying down Vakarasana or twisting pose.
All of these can be done in a sequence three times a day on an empty stomach; before breakfast, before lunch and before supper. You could do them at your desk or at home. When you are doing standing poses, you do not need any mats, equipment or special clothing.
Spine Health Routine
If you need some guidance and a good routine to practice on a daily basis, you should check out the office fitness routine and practice it daily. It is a great beginning to healthy and long term yoga for weight loss.