Yoga Burns How Many Calories?

Yoga has been a pastime of many people who seek to relax and workout at the same time for a long time. The fact that it is not too strenuous makes it a personal favorite. There are plenty of benefits that come with doing yoga, but I have to admit the most surprising one was when I realized that I could use it to drop some pounds.

Then it made sense. At the end of the day yoga is a physical activity. By its nature you will of course end up burning calories even if it’s not at a high rate. But the question is How Many Calories Does Yoga Burn? Well the answer is that there is no definitive response to that. It is all determined by a number of varying factors. Let’s consider a few of these below.

Yoga Styles

There are many different ways do yoga. In fact the numbers could surprise you. And they keep rising as though people in India spend their time inventing new styles. For convenience sake, I will just speak about the four main types. Each has its own level of demands on the human body and will therefore burn calories according to these demands. These include:

  1. Hatha yoga

It is the most common type and is often used to help the body and mind relax and find calm. It is also the easiest to perform and requires one to maintain certain postures while regulating the breathing. With hatha yoga you can burn anywhere from170 to 300 calories in an hour.

  1. Vinyasa Yoga

This involves different postures. The practitioner changes from one of these postures to the next while regulating their breathing. The four postures make it a bit more demanding than the hatha yoga hence, you can lose up to 580 calories in an hour.

  1. Bikram Yoga

With bikram yoga you will be exposed to different poses for a period of 90 minutes. You will also perform the postures in hot conditions. It is easy to expect to lose quite a high number of calories thanks in part to the hot temperatures. These could be between 400 and 480 calories burn in an hour ranking it in second place from vinyasa yoga.

  1. Ashtanga Yoga

This type of yoga is similar to vinyasa yoga in that you will go through different poses and postures while also coordinating your breathing. It’s in third place as far as calories burnt are concerned with you losing from 300 to 400 in one hour.

Duration of Yoga

Any physical activity will result in you losing more calories the longer the duration of time you spend doing it. This is the same with yoga.

The average number of calories burnt in a course of 30 minutes while doing yoga is 300. If you decided to double this, to an hour, you will end up burning up to 600 calories.

If you are looking to shed a few pounds then focus on performing yoga for an extended duration of time. Some sessions go for 90 minutes and will work great for you.

How Much You Weigh

A study done by researchers at Harvard medical has shown that the rate of burning calories is not the same. Different individuals will burnt calories according to their weight with heavier people burning  more within the same duration of time and vice versa.

Whether it aerobics or yoga, more calories will be burnt by larger people. This is what makes answering the question as to how many calories does yoga burn a bit complicated and as we said it depends on different factors.

Apart from losing weight let’s take a look at few other benefits of doing yoga.

Better Flexibility

One of the other main benefits of doing yoga is the improvement you will get with your body’s overall flexibility. Yoga includes stretching yourself. Do this a few times and you will notice that you are able to touch your toes; something that you would have otherwise never been able to do.

By stretching, you loosen up your muscles and connective tissue. Tough ligaments can cause you to have a less than ideal posture while a tight hip may result in unnecessary strain on your knee joint as a result of leaning too much on one side.

Cartilage and Joints

Yoga allows you to make full body movements. Some of these enable you to work areas that otherwise do not receive enough movement during your normal day activities. Take the cartilage in your joints, without the proper supply of nutrients they can degenerate over time and lose condition. This could lead to arthritis.

By moving the joints, you squeeze out the old fluid and receive fresh one from the surrounding tissue. This will help preserve them and prevent future problems.

Healthy Spine

The spinal disks or vertebrae act to absorb most of the shock. These can compress the nerves once they start to lose their suppleness and flexibility. To counter this yoga exercises such as the asana practice will keep the vertebra supple. Less pressure on the nerves will mean that the spine remain in the best condition for years to come. So go out there and do those forward bends, twists as well as back bends.


Yoga is a great way to relax both your body and your mind. However, while it does come with added benefits some of them including weight loss, yoga should not be approached from this perspective.  But, Does Yoga Burn Calories?  Yes.

For one, to be able to reap the full benefits of yoga, you need to have singular mindsets, not thinking of how much you are losing pounds.

The nature of yoga is that it is not as strenuous. While you will lose a few pounds, they will not be enough to cause a significant change. The best thing to do is to incorporate yoga into your workout sessions. Better yet practice yoga during the days that you are resting. This will help you stretch out your muscles better while still losing the few pounds.

How Many Calories Does Yoga Burn?
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