Hate the slow pace of yoga? Then try this more intense version so you can burn fat, get toned, and lift weights all at the same time.
This timesaving workout combines two popular forms of exercise into one total-body firming routine. Here’s how it works: While you’re lunging or balancing in a yoga pose, your legs and torso muscles are working hard to keep you upright. Pick up a pair of dumbbells (2 to 5 pounds) and suddenly your upper-body muscles are in on the act. The result: The yoga yields a stronger lower body, greater flexibility, straighter posture, and reduced stress. And the dumbbells add knockout arms, shoulders, and back; increased upper-body strength; and stronger bones (source).
Here is what Catherine Sait Louis from the New York Times had to say about her experience with “buff yoga.”
Buff Yoga, which incorporates candy-color dumbbells into classic yoga poses, was designed to ease two camps of exercisers out of their comfort zones. One, yogis who don’t take the time to lift weights, even though it could help them pull off those ever-elusive moves. And two, the uninitiated who can be “a little shy about yoga,” said Jess Gronholm, the workout’s creator and a yoga director at Crunch.
“Just to get them to take their shoes and socks off is an ordeal,” Mr. Gronholm said. So, to woo novices, Buff Yoga instructors include fewer poses and do not string them together.
Still, Buff Yoga requires instruction, and there was so little at the Union Square class I attended that true beginners must have thought they were in a foreign country where they don’t speak the language. As for easing into yoga: If your muscles are quaking just holding a pose, what’s the point of adding weights? This class is better for experienced yoga enthusiasts who want to add intensity to their practice. And it does. You try this balancing act: start in warrior one, left leg forward; rest left elbow on inner thigh, right hand on hip; then do arm curl with five pounds.
Most urban yogis are accustomed to making the best of cramped studios. But the sliver of a room at Union Square was so packed that it’s only a matter of time until someone accidentally clocks a neighbor with a dumbbell. You might try the roomier space at Crunch’s East 13th Street outpost (source).
As a trainer I have been weight training for years. In the last year I have incorporated a very intense version of yoga to my routine. Previously, I just couldn’t persuade myself to do this slow workout. After forcing myself to do this routine for 2 months, I FINALLY convinced myself that it was truly necessary. My posture improved, my knees stopped aching, and the shape of my body changed. If you are a “type A” (like me and you just can seem to slow down long enough to do an affective yoga routine), then maybe you should look into this type of yoga for a more intense version.
(CES, PES, CPT, BS)