Power Yoga is one of the more popular types of yoga being taught and practiced today because it is marketed towards those who want a more fitness-based approach to doing yoga. Do a quick search of yoga for weight loss and you will find many sites that recommend doing Power Yoga poses to increase metabolism and burn fat. While Power Yoga may be effective in shedding pounds, it also brings other benefits like toning muscles, increasing muscle strength, and improving flexibility.
If you want a vigorous, fitness-based, fast-paced approach to doing yoga, Power Yoga may be the style for you. To give you a better idea of what to expect in your class, here are some popular examples of Power Yoga poses.
Boat Pose (Navasana)
This pose requires a solid sense of balance and works multiple muscle groups like the core and glutes. It also exercises the back and leg muscles because you have to keep your back straight while your legs are suspended in the air. If you can't do the full Boat pose on your first attempt, don't worry. It's one of the Power Yoga poses that can take a couple sessions to learn to do properly because of its level of difficulty.
Warrior I (Virabhadrasana I)
Warrior I gives you a full body workout because it stretches the legs and hamstrings, increases strength in the knees and ankles, stretches the back and arm muscles, as well as the muscles around the hips. It is the first of the Warrior series and is typically performed with the other Warrior poses as part of Power Yoga poses sequences. What's important here is that
Tiger in Plank Pose (Vyaghrasana)
You start off by balancing your body on your hands and toes, keeping your torso and legs off the ground. While you're balanced like this, you bend your leg towards your chest and between your arms. This is a signature Power Yoga pose that like many others, works practically all your muscle groups from the shoulders and arms down to your legs and glutes.
Side Plank Pose (Vasisthasana)
If the Plank pose involves balancing on your arms and toes while facing the ground, the Side Plank pose requires you to balance on just one arm, with your body facing sideward. Coming from the Plank position, simply turn your body to the side and let your arm and foot support your weight. It's one of the more challenging Power Yoga poses because it tones and strengthens your arm muscles in addition to testing your sense of balance.
Three Legged Downward Dog (Tri Pada Adho Mukha Svanasana)
In a nutshell, this pose is the traditional Downward Facing Dog but with one leg raised as high up towards the ceiling as you can. Your weight will fall on your arms and one leg, that's why it's called the "three-legged" Downward Dog. What does this pose do? It exercises the glutes, increases the stretch in your legs, hamstrings, and back, and tests your balance.
Power Yoga can be a fun, but challenging class that's perfect for those who want a fast-paced and more vigorous style of doing yoga. Power Yoga takes on a fitness-based approach, so while you will also learn breathing exercises, you will also gain a lot of focus from the strenuous poses.