Yoga for Strength Building

Yoga for Strength Building

Are you looking for a *new* way to strengthen your core? Having trouble building up your arm and leg capacity? Or maybe you are just looking for a new workout aside from lifting and regular strength training?

Yoga has many benefits for a person, whether for relaxation, recreation, furthering your fitness goals, or simply a hobby. One of the things that one can do is yoga for strength building. You may already have an idea as to why.

Yoga, particularly medium to intermediate-level yoga poses help in the betterment of one’s muscle stability. Similar to what we do with repetitions, retaining a certain pose that targets certain parts of our body trains them to be strong enough to withstand even our own weight.

Now, we will be teaching you a few yoga for strength building poses that will help your arms, legs, and core to be more toned and have more endurance.


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Yoga Body-Weight Training

Yoga can be an effective form of body-weight training. Bodyweight training means you exercise while utilizing the weight of your own body. An example of poses here are different plank variations, warrior poses, and other standing poses.

Although, yoga alone cannot build huge amounts of bulk the same way that weight training can, it will help you strengthen and tone, and is a good incorporation to your fitness goals and also to help your body recover from rigorous training routines.

Before you start any kind of workout, it is very much recommended that you do a warming-up session first. This will help ready your muscles and body and decrease the chances of your cortisol levels rising.

As you delve into body-weight training through yoga, it’s crucial to balance it with comprehensive fitness strategies. This includes proper nutrition, adequate rest, and potentially diversifying your routine with targeted exercises. If you’re aspiring to validate your fitness knowledge further, consider preparing for a free ACE CPT practice exam. This not only sharpens your understanding of fitness principles but also provides a structured approach to refining your training methods.

Okay, let’s explore yoga for strength building with the following poses..


4 Arm-Strengthening Yoga Poses

Plank Pose

Yoga for Strength Building - Plank PosePlace your yoga mat on the ground. Get on all fours and then to a plank position. In this plank variation, you won’t be folding your arms at a 90-degree angle, but rather, you would keep them straight and use it to hold your body up.

Straighten your arms. You have to make sure that they are not too close or too wide apart. Your shoulders must also be just leveled, not too raised or too pushed.

Maintain a straight body and let your arms do the job of keeping your body lifted. You may start to feel that you can not hold up anymore and that is fine. If you are a beginner, then you can take a break from time to time. But, if you are feeling like you are about to transcend your limits, then definitely give it a shot!

Do the pose for 1-3 minutes, mainly depending on your endurance. Do not stay too long! We still have a lot more prepared for you.


Up and Down Plank

This one might already be familiar to you. This exercise not only works for your arms but your core as well — most plank positions do and this one is sure to be one to test you!

From the last pose, lower one of your arms down until it is on a 90-degree angle and do the same for the other arm. Try your best to keep your body properly aligned, as this is one of the best yoga for strength building exercises when done right.

Push back up using the same arm you used first when you lowered down, followed by the arm. Do this nicely and controlled, not too fast so you would not strain your shoulders. Repeat this for 1-2 minutes.


Four-limbed Staff Pose (Chaturanga Dandasana)

From the plank pose, slowly lower your body down as you bend your elbows backward while keeping your legs still straight. They must also have proper spacing! Keep your palms flat.

Lower your body until your arms are folded at a 90-degree angle backward. Again in this pose, your arms must be doing most of the supporting. Once your body is down, watch your back and try to keep them straight as much as you can.

Engage your core. Practice your breathing techniques and you can also close your eyes for better relaxation. Stay in this pose for 1-3 minutes, as well.


Side Plank Variations (Vasisthasana Variations)

Slowly transition from the Four-limbed Staff pose back to the plank pose. From there, put your right foot over your left leg and slowly turn your body to the left side as well.

Raise your left arm up and use it to balance yourself. Use the strength of your right arm to hold your body up. Let your chest open as you raise your hands up. Tuck your tailbone in as you stretch.

For the second variation, fold your left leg as you place your left foot just above your knee. Retain the remaining portions of the pose. Continuing to the last variation, try and raise your left leg up. Your right arm must be shaking by now but power through it!

Stay in each variation for 30 seconds or up to 3 minutes. If you think you can do more, feel free to increase the number of minutes. Do not forget to do this for the other side.


4 Leg-Strengthening Yoga Poses

Chair Pose

Yoga for Strength Building - Chair PoseThis pose is simply as it is: sitting but minus the chair. Some may think, “That is an easy one! Will that really strengthen my legs?”

Believe us when we say, it is one of the most popular yoga poses that target the muscles in your legs very well.

From a standing mountain pose, lower your buttocks down and fold your knees as if you are about to sit on a chair but with your arms stretched high up. Slant your upper body a little forward so you will have better balance.

Your legs may shake, but that is normal, doing this pose regularly will build endurance. Retain the pose for 1-3 minutes, it is okay if you want to do it for longer.


Warrior I (Virabhadrasana I)

Yoga for Strength Building - Warrior 1Transitioning from the chair pose, go back up to a standing mountain pose. Keep your arms raised.

Step your right leg forward until your left leg is stretched backwards. Open your chest out and breathe. Feel the stretch on both of your thighs.

This pose stretches the back of your thighs and hips. Doing so builds strength in your leg muscles to hold your body up and is also good for those who lift weights since it is somehow a rest but still productive way from it.

Stay in this pose for 1-3 minutes. Do not forget to do the same on the other side.


Warrior II (Virabhadrasana II)

Yoga for Strength Building - Warrior 2One of the variations of the warrior poses, the second warrior pose still involves almost the same pose from the first warrior pose meaning, we will just reposition our upper body but still nearly similar leg placements.

Continuing the leg placements from the Warrior I pose, make sure that your right foot is pointing forward, while your left foot, the one stretched at the back, is pointing sideways where your body will turn later on. Then lower your arms up to your shoulders and twist your body to the left all while maintaining everything we have said. Keep your arms up and your sight forward.

Stay in this pose for 1-3 minutes. Do not forget to do the same on the other side.


Triangle Pose

Yoga for Strength Building - Triangle PoseIn this pose, we will continue stretching the legs along with your lower back and arms. If in the two warrior poses one of your legs is bent, in this one, we will be stretching them out both.

Widen your legs and use your right hand to bend sideways towards your right ankle. Bend your upper body down sideways. If you cannot reach fully to your ankles, then you can settle for the farthest that you can. Keep in mind that in yoga, you get more flexible day by day.

Let your left arm raise to also stretch the left part of your back. Stay on each side for 3 minutes and remember what you are working for.


3 Core-Strengthening Yoga Poses

Boat Pose

Yoga for Strength Building - Boat PoseReady your mat back on the floor. If you know the hundreds workout, this might come easy to you.

Lay back on your mat and raise both of your legs up in the air. Then, raise your upper body up, forming a V-shape with your own body.

Keep your arms stretched forward so that it goes past your thighs. Maintain a good posture, breathe, and stay in this pose for up to five minutes. Do not forget to engage your core all throughout the exercise.


Bridge Pose

Yoga for Strength Building - Bridge PoseTransition back into lying down on your mat. This pose strengthens not only your core but your legs as well.

Put your hands at the sides, and start by raising your lower body up then your upper body. Keep the soles of your feet intact to the ground as you bend.

This pose is good for those who look for strength training but want to do it in the comforts of their own homes. It might come off looking weird at first, but the benefits you will get definitely outweigh the thought of being shy about what you are doing! As usual, stay in this pose for 1-3 minutes or longer if you can.


Wheel Pose

Yoga for Strength Building - Wheel PoseThe wheel pose is just another variation of a back bending pose. This pose works your abdomen, allowing it to stretch and recover.

Start by shifting your hands up either side of your head, palms flat and push up similarly to the bridge pose, but try and balance using the tip of your toes, like a ballerina. Let your body bend more by doing so. If it is too hard now, just continue with the normal bending pose for the time duration in this one.

If you are successful in doing this pose, stay in it for up to 3 minutes. You are doing very well!


Reed Pose

Surely, you have been doing this pose without knowing that it is an actual yoga pose! The Reed Pose is very similar to when we stretch out in the morning.

To do it, stand up, intertwine your fingers outward above your head, and stretch side to side. When you stretch, keep the soles of your feet flat on the ground.

Also, you are not just stretching side to side, you also have to crunch. Make sure to engage your core as you do this stretch. Repeat this for 1-2 minutes. Remember not to hold your breath as most people tend to do when they are working out.


It’s not only Yoga for strength building that is important!

strength building yoga posesDoing yoga for strength building helps, but it most certainly cannot do the job alone. Strength training requires a lot of work and of course, your dedication to achieve your goals.

It also varies depending on what you want to achieve, whether it is to improve your body’s endurance, lose weight but not strength, build muscles, or just simply be stronger in general. It is still best to consult with a personal trainer if you have one or even a nutritionist.

Doing and retaining various types of yoga poses most definitely improves one’s endurance, especially when done correctly or much better with a yogi or an instructor’s supervision. Your muscles are trained to withstand even your own body weight the more you proceed to intermediate and more complex poses.

If you have been into strength training for quite some time, particularly involving lifting, it is also good to have a few sets of other exercises on the side like yoga. Not only does yoga contribute to your main goal, but it also helps you soothe strained muscles and promote flexibility.

The poses that we did today are just a few of the basic ones that you can try before proceeding deeply into the world of yoga. If you liked these poses, you might also like joining a community! Find your people, you will never know how much other strength builders also spend time in yoga.

If you noticed, the poses that we did not only targeted the specific area we classified it into, but also areas such as glutes, thighs, shoulders, and neck. When done correctly, especially with practiced breathing techniques, these simple yoga poses are more beneficial than you think.

Lastly we would like to mention that aerial yoga and aerial fitness workouts can also help to target specific areas when building strength. Using an aerial hammock can be even more effective for some muscles, particularly your stabilizers, as well as extra support where needed, especially for those that are mobility impaired.





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