Building muscle through yoga

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Doing yoga as a regular practice has so many benefits, including building muscle. Just by using your body weight and repetition in movements you can build muscle, but if you’re looking for more you can always add some weights or resistance bands to your practice. When you hold a pose for longer than your body is used to it uses your body weight as tension and helps build muscle.

It’s always good to switch up your typical workout routine. It’s easy to get stuck doing the same workouts, but when you continually use the same muscles for the same routine your body can become used to it. Plus, when you don’t switch it up your muscles & joints never get a chance to fully recover. If you’re finding yourself at a plateau in your fitness journey, maybe it’s time to try a new routine. Trying new things can be the shock your body needs to continue losing weight or gaining muscle. 

To get down to the science of it, building muscle works by creating microscopic tears in your muscles, so they rebuild stronger and bigger. So when you hold poses longer or add more repetition in your movements you can build muscle through yoga. Once your body needs more, you can add dumbbells, ankle weights or resistance bands. Yoga is more than increasing flexibility, if done correctly it can also be a full body workout that increases your strength.

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Just like at the gym, you can build muscle through yoga by increasing number of sets, repetition in poses, holding poses longer and finding deeper variations. I.E. Birds of Paradise. Poses like plank, chaturanga, side plank, arm balances and headstand all work your shoulders, arms and core. Holding poses like these longer can help you build muscle.

If your goal is to increase muscle, power yoga could be for you. It’s all about repetition and continuing to move your body.

Below are some poses that can hold to help you gain muscle:

  • plank pose 
  • Boat pose
  • Chatarunga
  • Warrior poses 
  • Side plank
  • Chair pose 
  • Arm balances 
  • Crescent pose
  • Horse pose 
  • Crow pose
  • Headstand
  • Handstand 
  • Bridge pose

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