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Yoga for Obesity: Why Not?

Published on September 27, 2013

this form of exercise. Sure, we’ve all seen some poses that seem impossible to do ourselves: people with their feet above their heads, resting on their arms, but those aren’t beginner positions.

Yoga is a practice and there are modifications to virtually all poses. Working with an instructor who is familiar with all types of adjustments will help you get started on the right path.

One vital part of yoga is the meditation component. Connecting your mind and body with breathing, awareness and listening to your body is the key to yoga practice success. No one will encourage you to fight through pain or make you try a pose that you are not prepared for. Unlike Crossfit or Boot Camp classes that up the ante on intensity, yoga encourages feeling centered with your body and listening to your body’s cues.

It may be worth a call to the local yoga studio or instructor to discuss your personal situation prior to joining a class or studio. Though it may take longer to get into each position, most studios offer beginner level classes, which take the time to teach you proper poses, yoga flow techniques and opportunities to simply stretch and increase your flexibility.

Pilates

Closely linked to yoga is the practice of Pilates, and it’s another great regimen that can help elevate your heart rate and help you shed pounds without being too hard on your body. The only true barrier to this type of exercise is psychological, and it’s a myth to think that you can’t do it because you’re overweight.

Pilates is a great form of exercise to work on building core strength, becoming aware of your body’s needs and working on flexibility. Since many obese people suffer from a multitude of pains associated with carrying extra weight, Pilates is a good alternative because it’s low-impact while helping to strengthen your core.

While it’s true that sometimes the extra weight may hinder certain movements; a certified instructor should be able to work with your individual needs. Many Pilates’ studios will also offer private lessons, which is a good way to ease in to a class environment.

Whether you’re exploring yoga, Pilates or a different fitness option, it’s important to discuss any new exercise routine with your doctor first. Doing too much, too soon without knowing what your body, heart or head can handle can wreak havoc on your system and set you up for injury.

At Lite & Smart Dimensions, our specialized team of physicians, surgeons and support staff help put our patients on the path to success by exploring all aspects of their health and pre-existing conditions. With the right team behind you, you might become a “Yogi” sooner than you think.

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