8 Yoga Poses To Improve Flexibility

Watching people perform wonder struck movements such as twisting the foot over the head, grabbing ankles like its nothing, doing a full-split while smiling, and things like that make several individuals yearn for a flexible body. Being supple and flexible not only helps us turn into a pretzel with ease, flexibility is also helpful in avoiding injury and restricting damage to various muscle groups and joints in the body. In addition, easily stretched muscles achieve full range of motion and can help prevent balance problems, backache and arthritis in people. Incorporate the art of yoga into your daily lifestyle, a wonderful combination of stretching and relaxation that amplifies your flexibility and improves your balance.

Practice these eight yoga poses to enhance your flexibility and well being:

Standing Forward Fold PoseStanding Forward Fold Pose (Uttanasana): Stand upright on a yoga mat with feet close to each other. Take a deep breath and raise your arms overhead. Upon exhalation; bend forward at the hip, reaching your arms to the floor and keeping your back straight. Place your palms beside each foot on the ground. Rest your nose and forehead on the thighs. Keep breathing and hold the pose for 30 seconds.


Downward Facing Dog PoseDownward Facing Dog Pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana): Come on your knees and palms on a yoga mat. Keep your knees under your hips and wrists aligned with your shoulders. Keep your palms parallel to the floor with fingers spread and toes curled inwards. Exhale and lift your knees away from the yoga mat. Slowly, raise your thighs off the floor, straighten your legs. Bring your body into an upside down ‘V’ position.  Align your head with your upper arms, but do not let it hang. Gaze softly at the navel. Remain in this pose for 15-30 seconds.

Child PoseChild Pose (Balasana): Kneel on the ground and keep your feet hip-width apart. Sit back with your posterior on your heels. As you breathe in, lean forward draping your torso over your thighs. Rest your chest on the thighs and forehead on the floor. Keep your arms extended to the front. Hold the pose for 30 -60 seconds.


Crescent PoseCrescent Pose (Anjaneyasana): Begin with downward facing dog pose. Upon exhalation; step your right foot forward and bend your right knee at 90-degree angle. Straighten your left leg behind and align your heel with your toes. Square your hips to the mat and keep them parallel to the floor. Raise your arms up and keep them perpendicular to the floor. Hold the pose for 15 seconds.


Chair PoseChair Pose (Utkatasana): Begin in mountain pose. Inhale; raise your arm up toward the ceiling and keep them perpendicular to the floor. Lower your hips to the ground and shift your weight onto your heels. There will be a slight bend in your knees and upper back. Hold the pose for 30 seconds.

Half Spinal Twist PoseHalf Spinal Twist Pose ( Ardha Matsyendrasana): Sit tall on a yoga mat with legs stretched in front of you. Fold your left leg and place the heel beside your right hip. Cross your right leg over your left knee. Place your left hand on the outer edge of your right knee and keep your right hand behind your right hip. Turn your torso and head to the right and look over your right shoulder. Hold the pose for 30-60 seconds.

Hero PoseHero Pose (Virasana): Kneel on a yoga mat and spread your feet 2-3 inches apart. Keep your thighs perpendicular to the floor. Upon exhalation; slightly lean your torso forward as you sit on your hips. Keep your heels alongside your hips and align your feet with your shins. Rest your hands on your thighs and hold the pose for 30 seconds.


Butterfly PoseButterfly Pose (Baddha Konasana): Sit on the ground with stretched legs and arms by your side. Grab the heels and bring them near to your pelvic region. Touch the outer edges of your feet together. Let the knees drop open wide at your side. Hold the feet with your palms and move the knees up and down. Remain in this pose for 20-30 seconds.

Practice these eight yoga poses to increase pliancy which is a key component in maintaining the overall health and well being.

Author Bio: Manmohan Singh is a passionate Yogi, Yoga Teacher and a Traveller in India. He provides yoga teacher training in Rishikesh, India. He loves writing and reading the books related to yoga, health, nature and the Himalayas.  For more information about him visit his website.


Post50’s Yoga Benefits

Definitely yoga requires agility and flexibility to perform and is not everyone’s cup of tea. More than that indulging in any kind of physical activity involves interest, determination and the will power to accomplish something pushing yourself to your utmost capacity. If we talk about senior people at your home how often you have seen them ailing in pain or complaining about small health issues like headaches, back pain and the like. Multiple chronic conditions often develop when these everyday symptoms are not taken care of are you can say are a natural part of aging. Sleep deprivation, high blood pressure, arthritis, Alzheimer and various other diseases creep into old age before us realizing. So why not get your elderly parents and grandparents into healthy habits along with yourself that will improve your overall quality of life. Taking out a minute chunk of your day to concentrate on your breathing or practicing other exercises can be a great opening to a healthier life for the elderly.

Embracing the Yoga perspective

With the natural aging process, physical health inevitably leads to physical deterioration and eventually affects the social and spiritual aspects of an aging body. Yoga is believed to be a general and effective remedy for restricted mobility which can be loosened through light yoga exercises with the help of personal care and assistance services. Stiffness of the joints and general weakness in the muscles which makes an elderly person become bound to his bed or chair can be a great nuisance so why not start relieving it from home. Reduce your susceptibility to bone fractures by making yoga a must practice in your life. Other inner bodily functions like blood circulation problems, digestive issues and diabetes can also be improved and prevented from worsening with adopting yoga.

On a mental level

When old age dawns on you, which is when you need the most clarity of thoughts and an unbiased sense of judgment that will help you steer through your final years with grace and comfort. Your memory may fail you at the most crucial of times leaving you feel abandoned in a sea of emotions, that is when you seem to understand the benefits of yoga as it pulls you out of the helpless abyss of impending emotions and helps you gain mental stability and calmness and peace of mind. Your concentration span may also improve and you will be able to exercise logic and reason as and when needed.

Emotional and social aspect

Loneliness may haunt you in old age reducing your general level of self-esteem and confidence. Being left on you own accord can be a nightmare in old age and may breed feelings of insecurity and develop trust issues which are not easy to overcome overnight. Dependency on your spouse or children, financial constraints or inability to look after you makes one uneasy and fear incapacity and death. On a deeper level you tend to lose perspective on life and the lack of a goal in life may morally destroy us.

Although all these things might sound highly intimidating they may have a short and easy solution and that is paying very little attention to the minute things in life and consciously feeling them to develop a more comprehensive bond with your inner self which yoga and meditation in seniors can definitely bring about.

Becoming Better Every Day with Yoga

Yoga has been in the psyche and practice in Indian culture from time immemorial. It has been in the forefront of fitness essentials for decades and centuries. Not only has the art of yoga evolved over the years, but has also made room for improvisations off late. It is quite common to see that people are making a beeline for the ancient art again- especially in urban metros. Yoga has evolved from an all compassing practice to a more objective practice. Without having to do all the asanas and pranayamas, people are choosing exercises which provide them with the most effective results within a short amount of time.

The mantra of yoga is to better oneself each day. One nurtures both psychological and mental aspects of themselves through intensive practice of yoga. Regularity and dedication are two key components of attaining benefits from yoga. That is why it is a continual road to self-improvement. It is quite a common scenario that people don’t’ have the dedication to continue yoga for long. What is needed is the proper motivation and drive to continue the pursuit of yoga. One does need the help and consultation of yoga teachers to keep themselves motivated and in top condition.

The yoga teachers are well trained individuals who are groomed to be excellent consultants. Groomed in oratory and other life skills, yoga consultants help individuals in keeping fit. While yoga trainers have become common in urban cities, it was not the case even a few years ago. It is due to the impact of ashtanga yoga teacher training in India, that we are experiencing and influx of quality yoga instructors nowadays. People from diverse demographic background are taking up yoga consultancy as a viable mean of income and for good reasons. The career option has proved to be a viable mode of lucrative income generation.

There is something that one needs to look into while hiring a professional yoga trainer. Proper certifications is a must to practice as a professional yoga consultant. The centers for ashtanga yoga teacher training in India provide the pupils at their centers with valid certificates. Upon successful completion of their training people are endowed with the certificates. To get the best results out of yoga, proper consultation is required and only the tested consultants can provide that very impetus. To sum up it is true to say that with dedication and the proper consultation, one can expect decent results from their yoga practice.

Pulled A Muscle? 6 Reasons To Lay Off The Gym Till You Heal

   If you’ve pulled a muscle during your workout regimen, it can really throw a wrench in the works. Keeping up your exercise program with the regular intensity is the last thing that you should do. Ease up or you’ll regret it. Learn to pay attention to your body and know what is it saying to you. If you are serious about your fitness routine here are six reasons to lay off the gym till you heal after a muscle pull.

1. Serious Injury

When you pull a muscle, you could actually twist or tear that muscle in the process. The more severe the injury, the longer your healing time. A serious tear could take up to three months to heal. If you choose to ignore the warning signs and continue to push yourself, your mild injury could become something major.

2. Possible Surgery

If you are pushing your body beyond its natural abilities, you could be asking for serious repercussions. Tearing or damaging muscles while exercising most often leads to surgery to correct the damage. Once you need surgery, the muscles can forever be weaker and limit what you are able to do.

3. No Fitness Benefits

Go right back to what you always do while you’re facing a muscle pull and you’ll regret it. You’ll find yourself favoring the side with the injury. You’ll be forced to make modifications and won’t have the same intensity. You’ll be disappointed with results and could injure the other side of the body as you try and compensate for any weak points.

4. Chronic Injury

If you go right back to the gym after an injury and don’t give yourself time to heal, you could end up with a chronic injury. Your pulled muscle could become a point of weakness that always troubles you. It’s important to get a proper diagnosis, take steps to help yourself heal, and find out about Physical Therapy in NYC to help you fully recover.

5. Body Needs Rest

If you are a fitness fanatic, your body simply may need a break. Change up your routine and try something low impact while you wait. There are still a lot of fitness options that are available to you. Try working different muscle groups, or maybe try and different form of exercise all together. This can help you discover other muscle groups that may not be a strong and are in need of work.

6. Recharge

Give yourself time to truly heal and you’ll get more out of your workout once you hit the gym again. When the muscles are rested, they are more ready for the small tears you will create when you are back in the gym. Making sure your muscles are rested is an important aspect of the process.

Take care of yourself and pay attention to what your body is telling you. A muscle pull can be serious. Treat it accordingly and have patience so that you will recover sooner.


Yoga for Weight Loss for Beginners

Losing weight is not a simple task, but yoga is a fun form of workout that helps beginners to lose weight. Yoga for weight loss for beginners is a way that helps to tone their body, increases flexibility, and helps to find enlightenment.

There are simple yoga poses for weight loss for beginners. Practising the simple hand exercises at home will help in burning the excessive calories. Yoga for weight loss for beginners not only helps in increasing the concentration, but also helps in burning the fats.

If you are practising yoga with the intention of losing weight, then you need to maintain a regular routine regarding the poses for few of the basic steps. There might be little difficult in practising yoga for weight loss for beginners, but gradually you will realize the great benefits of yoga.

Not only yoga practice for weight loss for beginners needs regular workout regimen, but also you need to be very careful about your diet. Maintaining balanced diet while going for the yoga poses is very important and then only it will help you lose weight as fast as possible.

Yoga has an intense and incredible ability in balancing your emotions and also it deals with the conditions like anxiety, depression, anger and promotes clearer, calmer and more focused mind. Yoga is incredibly important in helping with eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia which affect mostly adults and teens. Practising yoga is extremely helpful and it functions as an effective tool  to restore imbalances in the mind and body of people who are struggling with such disorders.

Even you don’t have any eating disorder , yoga can also be beneficial in weight loss. It can balance your body and mind to behave in complete synchrony. Yoga for weight loss for beginners who are out of shape will help them to lose weight and tone their body. During the practice, yoga helps to burn the calories and build muscles that will burn more calories for the body at rest.

The more your practice the better you will get at it. During the initial stages, it is recommended to do yoga exercises 30 minutes to an hour per session. After you are familiar with your initial regimen, you can concentrate more on advanced poses. For example, doing hot yoga will help you burn significant amount of calories because of all the sweating and thus helping to increase your weight loss from yoga routine.

Once you learn to listen to your mind, yoga helps to pay attention to the foods that help you build your performance and balance during a workout. If you are looking for a serious weight loss, then it should be done under the supervision of yoga expert and over a period of time. The main advantage of yoga practice is, it leaves you fresh and new each time you are done with your yoga session. The main reason for this is yoga brings your body, mind and breath on the same platform each time. People who are practising yoga only with the intention of weight loss, they need to search for a proper plan and set some achievable goals.


Best Bodyweight Exercises That Complement Fast Muscle Growth

A good muscle-building plan is not considered complete without the inclusion of bodyweight exercises. The reason behind the inclusion of these exercises is that they can easily be included with any muscle-building program whether it involves dumbbells or barbells. Therefore, it is imperative that a muscle builder knows about the best bodyweight exercises.

Although every bodyweight exercise comes with its benefits, however, there are some that are specific to muscle building. The lines below give the best bodyweight exercises that promote fast muscle growth.

1. Chin Up:

This bodyweight exercise is a great solution for building multiple muscle groups. A muscle builder who performs this exercise can experience an obvious difference in the growth of biceps and lats. To get the best results from the exercise, a muscle builder must focus on at least 50 reps of the exercise every week with variation. Moreover, using rings instead of bars is the most effective way of performing this exercise.

2. Inverted Row:

Sets of inverted row exercise performed either on rings or on bar can help strengthen the back and grow muscles in this particular region. The key to achieving effectiveness in this exercise lies in gradually increasing the difficulty level. The difficulty can be increased by holding the bodyweight at the top for a few seconds and then slowly going down.

3. Front Lever:

If there is any exercise that works best on the lats, it is front lever bodyweight exercise. Moreover, besides working on lats, this exercise is also a good option for working the abdominal muscles. For starters your focus must be to perform at least 4 sets with a 10 seconds hold using isometric holds.

4. Handstand Pushup:

A great exercise when it comes to building shoulder muscles without using weights. Moreover, compared to popular shoulder exercises such as barbell military press; it causes way less destruction and pain. However, to perform this exercise you first need to master the technique of handstand. Once you have mastered that you can go for pushups with at least ten reps.

5. Pushup:

Perhaps the most conventional bodyweight exercise with countless benefits is pushup. Compared to other exercises such as dumbbell press or barbell press, the exercise is risk free and equally effective. Therefore, when it comes to working on the whole body and making it strong, you can never go wrong with pushup and its variations.

6. Ring Fly:

A highly challenging and effective muscle building exercise for the chest region is ring fly. If you wish to build your chest muscles and do not have the weights at home, while you have a set of rings hanging from the roof, then you need not to worry about weights. Rather, its your body and the rings that will give you the best muscle growth in the chest region which you desire.

7. Pistol Squat:

You can use best muscles building supplements to give you strength to perform exercises that can build and make your lower body strong, or you can go for the alternate in the form of pistol squat. Although pistol squat may seem difficult at first, but once you master them gradually, eventually you will achieve a stronger lower body that has great balance and coordination.


In a nutshell, if you know the right bodyweight exercises, then you wont need to lift weights to build muscles. However, if you still wish to lift weights, then you can easily complement the efforts by including bodyweight exercises in the weight lifting regime for better results.


Can Exercise be Fun?

Before we get into a discussion about exercise, we would like to remind you right at the beginning that before you start any exercise plan you need to have a discussion with your doctor.

Weight loss and fitness go hand-in-hand, and fitness means exercise.

We all know that, but many people struggle to exercise consistently. Are you one who has a love/hate relationship with exercise?

There are 3 main reasons why people don’t like to exercise like they know they should.

1. Negative association.
This could go back to childhood memories of having a hard time in gym class or not feeling as athletic as other classmates.

2. Physical pain
If you hurt when you move, you’re not going to want to do much exercise. In a practical way exercise is going to help in relieving both pain and fatigue.

3. Feeling like you don’t have the time
This is really an excuse for putting your needs last. It means that you are putting exercise as your very last priority.

Why do we need to exercise?

Exercise is a necessity if you want to live healthy and have a long life. Your body was created to move, not sit at a computer desk all day and on the couch all evening.

Exercising can add 6-7 years to your life, or, looking at it the other way, by not exercising you could lose 6-7 years.

So many Americans lack exercise and that results in over 300,000 deaths annually in the U.S. Consistent exercise reduces your risk of developing diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure. It even can reduce your risk of getting colon cancer. And it helps build and maintain healthy bones and muscles and joints, which is very important as you age

Our bodies were made for movement and when you don’t use it you lose bone density and muscle, and you increase pain, discomfort, and problems with flexibility.

As if that weren’t reason enough to put exercise in your life, studies have shown that exercising improves your self-image. And an improved self-image impacts your career and how you make your way through your life.

Exercise is not an option but an absolute necessity as a way to be fit and allow your body to achieve and maintain its normal weight.

Are you aware that you might be exercising in a way that it works against you?
Research is showing that low to moderate intensity exercise for only 30 minutes 3-4 times per week is optimal. In the wrong context exercise can wear you down, locking your body into a survival metabolism in which you actually store fat.

If your exercise is intense and/or you have a mindset that you hate it, you increase production of the stress hormone cortisol, which stimulates the body to hang on to fat.

How to enjoy exercise

But you can create an easy and joyful approach to exercise. Look at it not as a punishment or a struggle, but a way to nurture your body and live a healthy, long life.

Be open to making exercise a pleasurable experience. Exercising can be fun. It’s ‘me’ time. You are connecting to the power in your body. It feels good as you get stronger and stronger, so it gets easier every time.

Fill your mind with pleasurable thoughts as you move your body. Let go of the need to compare and compete. Enjoy the moment and the great feelings in your body.

Practical Tips:
• Do it with other people.

• Yoga is a great way to move your body gently if you are dealing with pain.

• Watch a TV show you enjoy while you’re on the treadmill.

• Write 30 minutes of exercise into your schedule so it is as important as all the other things you’ve scheduled on your calendar.

• Choose a buddy to keep you accountable.

Consistent exercise may feel uncomfortable at first but that’s okay. It’s your new way of life. Take it one step at a time. This is a way to honor yourself.


3 Basic And Most Important Supplements Required By A Bodybuilder

The fact is no more hidden that bodybuilders use muscle building supplements to help them grow stronger and bigger muscles. There were times when speaking or use of supplements was considered a taboo, however, with the passage of time their use has become common and an acceptable practice.

There is a huge variety of healthy supplements available in the market. Each supplement has a specific purpose, therefore, every muscle builder uses a different set of supplements. The lines below give the 3 basic and major types of most effective and commonly used supplements.

1. Vitamins and Minerals:

The first type of supplement that is used by ordinary people along with bodybuilders alike is vitamin and mineral supplement. The reason why vitamins and minerals are required by the body is because the conversion of food into tissues, energy and hormones is not possible without them.

The reason why vitamins are necessary for bodybuilders is because vitamins work by enhancing the effect of proteins which eventually results in bigger muscles. Therefore, without vitamins the proteins could not perform their function, hence, vitamins are as integral for body builders as are proteins.

The function of minerals is to make sure that the correct signals are received by the brain. If the brain receives the right signal, only then will it be able to respond to the extensive weight lifting and produce testosterone hormone for muscle growth. Therefore, vitamins and minerals supplements are integral for body builders the same as any other supplement.

2. Protein:

Proteins require no introduction pertaining to muscle building. Without protein it is impossible for the muscles to grow, because it’s the components of protein that make the muscles grow. Therefore, this is the major reason why all the muscle building supplements for body builders comprise of protein.

There are different types of protein, there are the ones that digest quickly and are pure, while there are others that digest slowly and contain other minerals as well. The selection of protein supplement depends upon its concentration and the time when it is used as in before or after the workout. Protein shakes are commonly used in shaping the body.

3. Essential Fatty Acids:

Essential fatty acid consist of omega-3 fatty acids as they cannot be produced by the body on its own, therefore, they have to be consumed from food sources. The reason why essential fatty acids are necessary for bodybuilders is because they perform a variety of functions such as burning fats, producing energy, development of nerve and brain tissues, regulation of mood, production of hemoglobin, and insulin metabolism etc. For a body builder it is imperative that all the body function keep on working in a healthy and normal way in order to support muscle growth. Therefore, this is the reason why every bodybuilder must either consume fatty acids rich foods or use supplements to keep the body healthy and functioning.


In short, protein, fatty acids, and vitamins and minerals are the three primary supplements that a bodybuilder requires in order to induce maximum muscle growth and get the best results from the workout.


Losing Weight with Trampoline Fitness

While trampolines are fun, they also serve as a physical activity that can aid in weight loss if performed in an athletic fashion for a specific duration of time. One of the best ways to lose weight is by doing something that you enjoy. Since trampolines are so much fun, it only makes sense to create a workout regimen around a hobby you enjoy. The basics of trampoline exercise are pretty simple. Like with other workout routines, you’ll want to create a program for yourself that’s structured for weight loss, as well as easy to stick to. A lot of people fail at weight loss because they go the crash and burn route. Losing weight in any fashion is not a race, it’s a marathon, and keeping yourself in top condition over the long term is the best way to ensure you keep the weight off for good.

By: Laura Bittner

Naturally, you’ll need access to a trampoline. You may also want to get your hands on a stopwatch timer and a jump rope. Keep plenty of bottled water on hand near the workout area as well. Trampolines both burn calories and tone lean muscle. Make sure the trampoline is in good shape and not in need of repairs. Weight loss on the trampoline varies, but a 200 pound person jumping on a trampoline for thirty minutes will burn approximately 150 calories. You may want to alternate your trampoline exercises with other things such as jogging. One may also consider laminectomy for weight loss but it is risky.

Once you become very accustomed to the exercise routine, you can add in a jump rope if you’re looking for something more challenging. Jump roping while on a trampoline is fairly difficult and shouldn’t be attempted unless you’re in good health, and competent of your abilities to do so. You should keep the timer onhand and track your progress. Regular exercise three or four times a week is often recommended for fat loss. Of course you’ll also want to reduce your calorie intake. It’s generally thought that reducing caloric intake by about 500 calories is usually a safe zone for weight loss. You may also want to reduce carbohydrates. The most important thing about all weight loss is considering caloric intake against caloric output. In other words, you want to burn more calories than you consume. The more in shape you are, the harder it is to burn excess pounds.

You should have fun while exercising on the trampoline. Adopt a strategy that works for you, add in variation and keep notes on the times you’ve exercised and the exercises you’ve done. The more athletic you are, the more complex your exercises can become over time. Working in somersaults and other variations while make the exercise feel less like work, and thus make you more inclined to stick to it. Be sure to maintain your trampoline and practice good trampoline safety to avoid injury as well.

Toning Thighs and Buttocks With Exercises

Is your desk-bound job making you heavier around the waist and thighs? Are you trying hard to lose fat from this part of the body but without much help? This article will definitely help you. The following exercises are recommended by fitness trainers in Sydney CBD for their clients and these exercises are very effective.

Chair Squat

You just need a stable chair for performing this exercise. First, stand in front of the chair by keeping the chair behind your back. Your shoulders should be rolled back and feet should be shoulder-width apart. Now lower your bottom to the chair. You must not sit on it. As soon as the buttocks touch the seat, you must rise up. Repeat this movement for 15-20 times.

One-Legged Squat

For performing this exercise you must stand next to a stable structure, preferably a pole. Hold the pole with left hand and raise the right leg. Keep the raised leg straight. Now, bend at your hips and the left knee must be lowered. You must make sure that your back is not bent while performing this move. Return to your standing position and repeat the exercise for 15-20 times. After performing it for 15-20 times with left leg you must switch sides and again perform it for the same number of times with the other leg.

Standard Squat

You must stand with the chest facing forward and shoulders rolled back. Your feet should be wide apart. Now swing back your hips, sticking your buttocks out. Slightly lower the bottom towards the ground. Perform the moves for 12-20 times.

Simple Side Squat

You can make this exercise more intense by holding weights in hand. Stand erect keeping your feet together. Now step to a side with the right leg and squat downwards. Stand up in slow and swift motion and bring the left leg to meet the right one. Perform this exercise in this direction for 10 times and another set of 10 in the opposite direction.

Goddess Squat

Position yourself with the legs wide apart. The toes of both feet must be pointing out in each side. Now, bend the knees and make the thighs parallel to ground. To make the exercise more challenging, jump up in air keeping the legs wide apart. Perform the move for 15-20 times. If you have any joint problem, you must not perform the last move of jumping in air.

Sumo Squat

This exercise will make your buttocks really firm. With the toes pointing forward stand with the legs apart from each other. Now, swing your hips gaining the posture of standard squat. Return to your standing position with the right leg kicking straight in front of you. Now, return to the squat position (standard) and perform the same moves with the left leg. Perform the exercise with alternating legs till you have done it for 20 times.