In a world filled with fitness fads and constantly changing workout trends, yoga remains a timeless practice celebrated for its holistic approach to health and well-being. Among its many benefits, yoga offers a gentle yet effective path toward achieving toned and sculpted arms. Regardless of your yoga experience level, this article will guide you through the eight best yoga exercises to reduce arm fat and build strength.
Nadia Murdock, CPT, a certified fitness instructor at Garage Gym Reviews, tells Eat This, Not That!, “Yoga has so many benefits, including increased flexibility, boosting your metabolism, increasing muscle strength, and much more. However, if you’re looking for movements to help reduce fat in your arms, it’s important to note that spot-reduction training isn’t possible. You must pay attention to your lifestyle habits as well. This includes your nutrition, sleep, stress management, and total body exercise routine.”
The 8 Best Yoga Exercises To Reduce Arm Fat
Arms are one of those areas many of us have a love-hate relationship with. We wave with them, carry groceries with them, and want them to look and feel their best since they’re often on display. Instead of resorting to heavy weights and grueling gym sessions, these yoga exercises harness the power of mindful movement and breath control to help you reach your fitness goals.
We’ve handpicked the below yoga exercises to reduce arm fat and reveal an impressive tone. These moves will fire up your arm muscles, including the triceps, biceps, and shoulders. Whether you’re looking to shed a few extra pounds or enhance your arm definition, these poses are here to help. Read on for the exercises, then check out The Best Arm-Strengthening Exercises for Women.
First up on this list of yoga exercises to reduce arm fat is downward dog. Downward-facing dog is the ultimate yoga pose to kickstart your day. “This move warms up your entire body, including your hamstrings, calves, and Achilles tendon and the muscles in the upper arm, which includes the triceps,” says Murdock.
Begin in a tabletop position. Place your hands in front of you, keeping them shoulder-width apart. For better support, spread your fingers wide on the yoga mat. Brace yourself on your hands, and push your body up while bringing your hips toward the ceiling and keeping your legs straight. Allow your weight to shift back into your hips, legs, and hands. Keep your head aligned with your spine until you’re triangular. Hold for a few minutes, and then gently float your body forward into a plank position. Perform this movement for three to five minutes before moving on to the next exercise.
This elegant pose stretches your entire body, promoting balance and strength while toning your arms.
Murdock says, “You need to activate muscles in your arms to hold the star pose. Starting from mountain pose, step your feet wide apart with your arms out to the side. Make sure your feet are underneath your wrists, facing forward and parallel. Drive your weight into your feet, and keep your thighs activated while keeping your tailbone tucked in.” Hold for three to five minutes.
The cobra pose is a gentle backbend that opens your chest and stretches your abdominal muscles.
“Lie flat on your stomach with your forehead on the ground,” instructs Murdock. “Place your arms on either side of your shoulders, palms planted on the ground. Slowly start to place pressure on the palms of your hands, and push up. While keeping your arms stretched, dial your stomach and your hips into the ground (this also helps to stretch the abdomen and back). Hold your gaze at the ceiling for 15 to 30 seconds, and return to the starting position. Repeat for three to five minutes.
This pose is a fantastic way to improve concentration and strengthen your core while shrinking arm fat.
“Crow pose helps to strengthen your forearms, wrists, and arms,” says Murdock. “Stand upright with your feet about shoulder-width apart. Hang your arms on each side of the body. Slowly migrate into a low squat position, and then place the palms of your hands on the floor shoulder-width apart. Next, apply pressure to your palms by pushing them into the ground. Elevate your feet off the ground by resting your knees on the backs of your upper arms. Keep your gaze straight ahead, and hold the position for a few seconds. Remember to breathe by exhaling slowly.” Repeat this pose three to four times before heading into the next movement.
Besides boosting shoulder flexibility, the forward fold is a simple yet effective pose to stretch your hamstrings and release tension in your lower back.
“Start with your feet hip-distance apart while standing tall. As you inhale, clasp your hands behind your back by interlacing your fingers or bringing your palms together. Then, exhale and fold forward from the waist while keeping your hands together. Allow your arms to lift as high as they can behind your back.” Hold this position for five to 10 deep breaths. Remember to keep your hips stacked and over your heels.
Next up, it’s time for Chaturanga. “Begin in a tabletop position on the floor with your hands slightly wider than your shoulders,” instructs Murdock. “Push your knees off the ground, and step back into a plank position. Keep a soft gaze at the edge of your yoga mat to avoid overextending your neck. Your arms should be close to your body, keeping your hands aligned with your ribcage and elbows pointing back. Use your arms to lower your body to the floor and come back up.” Repeat 10 to 12 times.
The upward-facing dog is an energizing backbend that strengthens your arms and back muscles.
“From a plank position, inhale deeply, and glide your body forward through your shoulders. As you glide forward, keep your knees and thighs off the ground. Keep sliding forward until your arms are straight. Keep your hands pressed into the ground while engaging the back of your arms and shoulders,” explains Murdock. Perform this movement for three to five minutes.
Dolphin plank pose combines the strength-building benefits of a plank with the shoulder-opening benefits of a downward-facing dog.
“Start by coming down onto the floor into tabletop position. Make sure your knees are directly under your hips,” says Murdock. “Coming down onto your forearms with your shoulders directly above your wrists, firmly press your palms and forearms into the ground. Then, curl your toes under and exhale as you lift your knees off the floor, lengthening your tailbone. Continue pressing your forearms into the ground, firming your shoulder blades against your back. Keep your legs straight without locking the knees.” Hold for 30 to 60 minutes before resting for 30 seconds. Repeat for five minutes.