Exercise for Ayurvedic Weight Loss

by Ayurveda Therapist on July 11, 2011

Exercise is an important aspect of any healthy weight loss plan. Not only will you lose weight, but exercise helps tone your muscles, build bone density, strengthens the heart and cardiovascular system, and generally shapes up your body.

For sustainable weight loss it is recommended to exercise moderately and daily rather than strenuous exercise 1-2 times per week. 30 minutes of exercise a day will burn calories and help you lose weight. If you are starting from zero exercise and this seems like a lot, start with even a 5-10 minute walk a day and build up to your goal.

Here are 3 basic exercise tips for Ayurvedic weight loss:

1. Get Up and Go
An essential aspect to all weight loss programs is exercise. Enjoy a brisk walk in the morning sun to jump-start your metabolism. When possible, walk in nature to breathe in the fresh air and become in-tune with the seasons.

2. Exercise According to Your Dosha:
According to Ayurveda, burning fat is much easier when you match your workouts with your specific body type, or dosha.

Vata: Benefit most from movements with a gentler pace, like tai chi, yoga, or a moderate amount of light aerobics.

Pitta: Benefit from more challenging sports such as moderate hiking, long distance swimming, and skiing are beneficial. Pitta should prefer less competitive sports that can easily aggravate a strong Pitta energy.

Kapha: Benefit from vigorous physical activities, such as running, high energy dancing, power yoga, intense aerobics, and speed swimming.

3. Yoga for Your Dosha:
Practice yoga according to your dosha. Different yoga poses have specific benefic effects for each body type. Backward bends are “heating” and help to balance Vata. Forward bending postures are “cooling” and are therefore beneficial for Pitta dosha. Twists are good for Kapha types helping to massage the internal organs, activate digestion, and expel toxins.

Vata: Sun salutation x 12 slowly done. Camel pose, cobra pose, cow asana. In general, Vata benefit from slow, gentle exercise.

Pitta: Sun salutation x 16 moderately fast (moon salutation if possible). Bow pose, boat pose, fish asana, Paschimotanasana. Pitta benefit from moderate intensity balanced with calm exercises.

Kapha: Sun salutation x 12 done fast. Peacock pose, tree pose, lion pose. Vigorous exercise is beneficial for Kapha types.

Integrating this holistic approach along with the ayurdevic diet, and herbal medicines (as prescribed by an Ayurvedic physician) will make your weight loss program much more successful and sustainable.

Regular exercise can help you lose or control weight, reduce your risk of heart disease, and strengthen your bones and muscles. However, if you haven’t exercised for some time and you have health concerns, you may want to talk to your doctor before starting a new exercise routine.

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