Many people ask me “Can you use weight with Yoga?” Or “I really need to lose a few pounds, will Yoga help?”
My answer, almost all the time, is sure Yoga can help you lose weight but with a good diet and exercise – then of course Yoga will help. But Yoga is not about losing weight. It’s a much more spiritual practice than something like pilates, which is designed to be a cross between the physical aspects of Yoga, strength and fitness. If losing weight is a priority and is what’s influencing you to start the practice, perhaps have a look around for classes that are designed for this purpose more directly first, just so you’re not disappointed when stepping on the scales.
About a year ago, I attended a Yoga on the Roof session, led by a work client. This class attracted around over 50 people, a great turn out for the client, and really did look fantastic. The Yoga instructor was a lady focused on fitness and keeping off the pounds so you can imagine how the “Yoga class” went! We were jumping around pretty much doing star jumps and squats, and everyone in the class was loving it – lapping it all up! meanwhile, I’m thinking is this what people think Yoga is?
It dawned on me why people are beginning to associate Yoga with fitness and weight loss, it’s because that’s what the western media has portrayed it to be today. Somehow, the spiritual practice has dissolved because that doesn’t sell as hard in the Western world.
My advice to anyone looking to start Yoga to lose weight, have a look around for something a bit more relevant to your goal. If your curious, definitely give Yoga a go – it’s magical.