Do you think you can build muscle without lifting weights? If you think you cannot, you are in for a pleasant surprise. A lean, toned, and well-shaped body is something we all dream of, and we think gyms are the only places to build them. What if I told you it is possible on a yoga mat too? Yes, the right asanas will help you build muscle, and here are 7 of them. Take a look.
Before that, let’s learn how yoga can build muscle.
Yoga To Build Muscle
Unlike in a gym, yoga does not require you to lift weights to build muscle. In yoga, you lift your body weight instead of dumbbells. Some yoga poses have the ability to break your muscle fibers by creating tension in them. Then, your body builds more muscles as backup, thereby increasing the muscle mass. Choose asanas that can do this and practice away. A few of them are mentioned below.
7 Best Poses In Yoga For Muscle Building
For a convenient and natural way to build muscle, try the following yoga poses.
- Vrikshasana (Tree Pose)
- Virabhadrasana 1 (Warrior 1 Pose)
- Trikonasana (Triangle Pose)
- Sethu Bandhasana (Bridge Pose)
- Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose)
- Bakasana (Crow Pose)
- Salamba Sirsasana (Headstand)
1. Vrikshasana (Tree Pose)
Vrikshasana or the Tree Pose is a standing asana that brings balance to your body. It is one of the few asanas practiced with the eyes open. For better results, practice Vrikshasana in the morning on an empty stomach when your mind is clear and free from clutter. Vrikshasana is a beginner level Hatha Yoga asana, and you need to keep at it for at least one minute.
Benefits: Vrikshasana stretches and strengthens your legs and increases their stability. It stretches your back and arms. It strengthens the ligaments and tendons of your feet and the bones of your legs. It also increases your stamina and concentration.
To know more about the pose, click here: Vrikshasana
2. Virabhadrasana 1 (Warrior 1 Pose)
Virabhadrasana 1 or the Warrior 1 Pose is an asana commemorating great fighters. Virabhadrasana is the name of a great warrior in Hindu mythology. You might think it strange to have a yoga pose named after a warrior when yoga is all about peace. Here, it refers more to the spiritual warrior in each one of us who fights against ignorance. Practice the asana in the morning on an empty stomach and hold the pose for at least 20 seconds. Virabhadrasana 1 is a beginner level Vinyasa Yoga asana.
Benefits: Virabhadrasana 1 stretches your chest, lungs, and stomach. It strengthens your back muscles and arms. The pose strengthens and stretches your thighs and calves. It improves focus and blood circulation. It also energizes your body and loosens your shoulders.
To know more about the pose, click here: Virabhadrasana 1
3. Trikonasana (Triangle Pose)
Trikonasana or the Triangle Pose looks like a triangle when assumed, and is hence named so. Practice it in the morning preferably, or in the evenings on an empty stomach after a gap of 4 to 6 hours after having a meal. It is alright to practice Trikonasana at other times too, but it won’t give good results. Trikonasana is a beginner level Vinyasa Yoga asana and you need to practice it for a minimum of 30 seconds.
Benefits: Trikonasana strengthens your legs, arms, knees, and ankles and stretches your hips, shoulders, and spine. It also improves your physical equilibrium and digestion. The pose reduces back pain and stress, stimulates your spinal nerves, and treats neck sprains.
To know more about the pose, click here: Trikonasana
4. Sethu Bandhasana (Bridge Pose)
Setu Bandhasana or the Bridge Pose resembles a bridge and is therefore named so. Practice it in the morning if you are an early riser or in the evenings. Make sure your stomach is empty whenever you practice as the digested food will release energy in your body, which can be spent on the asana. Sethu Bandhasana is a beginner level Vinyasa Yoga asana that takes 30 to 60 seconds to do.
Benefits: Sethu Bandhasana strengthens the back muscles and stretches the chest and spine. It calms your brain and reduces thyroid problems. The pose helps those suffering from asthma and sinusitis. Sethu Bandhasana also cures anxiety disorders, depression, and constipation.
To know more about the pose, click here: Sethu Bandhasana
5. Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose)
Bhujangasana or the Cobra Pose resembles a snake with its hood raised. It is part of the Surya Namaskar regimen. This pose works great when practiced in the morning on an empty stomach and clean bowels. If you practice it in the evenings, make sure you do it 4 to 6 hours after your meal. Cobra Pose is a basic level Vinyasa Yoga asana. Hold the pose for 15 to 30 seconds.
Benefits: Bhujangasana tones your abdomen and opens up your shoulders. It strengthens your back and increases its flexibility. This asana reduces fatigue and improves blood circulation. The pose is a balm for respiratory issues. It also elevates your mood and stimulates your kidneys.
To know more about the pose, click here: Bhujangasana
6. Bakasana (Crow Pose)
Bakasana or the Crow Pose looks like a crow perched on a tree branch. This challenging pose requires preparation, and a daily yoga routine will make it easier to assume. For best results, practice Bakasana in the morning on an empty stomach and clean bowels or in the evening after a gap of 4 to 6 hours from your last meal. Bakasana is an intermediate level Hatha Yoga asana. Hold the pose for 30 to 60 seconds.
Benefits: Bakasana strengthens your wrists and arms and the abdominal region. It stretches your upper back and increases concentration and coordination. The pose reduces acidity problems and heartburn and prepares your mind and body for challenges.
To know more about the asana, click here: Bakasana
7. Salamba Sirsasana (Headstand)
Salamba Sirsasana or the Headstand is a challenging pose considered as the king of all poses. The pose requires you to bear the entire weight of your body on your shoulders. This asana requires ideal upper body strength that you have to work towards before you can try it. Practice the pose in the morning on an empty stomach. It is an advanced Vinyasa Yoga asana. Hold the pose for one to five minutes.
Benefits: Salamba Sirsasana strengthens your lungs, arms, and legs. It stimulates your pituitary gland and tones your abdominal organs. It helps those suffering from insomnia and sinusitis. The pose stimulates your nerves and allows fresh blood to flow to your brain.
To know more about the pose, click here: Salamba Sirsasana
Now, let’s answer some questions regarding yoga and muscle building.
Expert’s Answers For Readers’ Questions
What is the ideal diet during the muscle building process?
Incorporate protein-rich foods in your diet and consume more calories than you expend for a healthy muscle building process.
Is it advisable for first-time yoga doers to build muscle through it?
Yes, it might take time, but yoga is a natural and simple way of building muscle.
What type of yoga is best for building muscle?
Power yoga is recommended to build muscle.
How many days a week do I practice muscle building yoga asanas?
Practice yoga every other day to give your body time to recover and build new muscles.
That’s it, guys. That’s all you need to know about yoga for muscle building. You might be doubtful about the results, but we assure you, yoga does wonders. You will only know if you try. So, get started and tell us how it worked for you.
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