Yoga For Weightloss

By Claire Diab and Dennis Boyle

Obesity can be a very challenging and sometimes a frustrating fight in the battle against weight loss. Obesity is the buildup of fat over time, resulting in weight gain and excess proportion of overall body fat. The BMI or (Body Mass Index) is a common and reliable way to measure obesity. A BMI of 25 to 29.9 is considered to be overweight. Obesity is measured as a BMI of 30. Some common causes of obesity are the excess intake of calories, sugars, and foods which are high in fat. When a person consumes more calories than burned, this can result in weight gain. Some other general factors contributing to obesity are age, genetics, and lack of activity. As we age our bodies ability to metabolize food slows down affecting our digestive and elimination patterns. Activity is the key role in controlling excess weight gain and aiding in weight loss. Those who actively participate in exercise increase their metabolic rate and require more calories to maintain their current weight. Being physically active also helps to decrease the appetite in obese individuals allowing for easier weight management and eventual weight loss.

Yoga is an excellent form of physical activity and when done on a consistent basis helps to improve digestion, increase metabolism, reduce the risks associated with obesity and gradually contributes to weight loss in those who incorporate low fat diet rather than exercise alone.

Sun Salutations are a beautiful, balanced series of movements that will improve flexibility, build strength, and lengthen and tone every major muscle. It is a set of twelve yoga postures that flow with the breathe.  There are many different ways of performing Salutation to the Sun (Sun Salutation). This short routine can be practiced once a day in the early morning or late afternoon when the sun is rising or setting. Perform the postures carefully with and with full awareness in your body. Practice regularly with joy, love, and compassion and you will see rapid improvement in your total health and wellbeing.


1. Salutation Pose – Standing, hands to heart center






2. Reach for the Sky Pose – Standing, arms raised over head






3. Hand to Foot Pose – Standing, forward bend






4. Equestrian Pose – Left leg back





5. Mountain Pose – Downward Dog





6. Eight Limbs Pose – Toes, knees, chest, hands, and chin to the floor



7. Cobra Pose – Chest comes forward head is up





8. Mountain Pose –  Downward Dog




9. Equestrian Pose – Left leg forward





10. Hand to Foot Pose – Standing, forward bend





11. Reach for the Sky Pose – Standing, arms raised over head







12. Salutation Pose – Standing, hands to heart center






~ Repeat with the right leg back~

You can do 2, 4, or 6 sets of the Sun Salutations. Enjoy!


Claire Diab is an internationally recognized Yoga therapist. She is the director of the Yoga Program for the Chopra Center founded by Dr. Deepak Chopra and Dr. David Simon. She is an adjunct professor of Asian Studies at Seton Hall University. She is the author of several books and DVDs on Yoga including “Yoga For Firefighters.”


Dennis Boyle is a retired fire director and acting chief with the West Orange (NJ) Fire Department. He was the recipient of the 1999 New Jersey Deputy Fire Chiefs “Fire Officer of the Year” award.



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