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7 Yoga Poses That Burn the Most Calories

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Many people think yoga is just one of those easy workouts. They wrongly assume that chanting and stretching can only put one in a meditative state of mind, but would not melt fat away.

The truth is Yoga is equal parts strength, flexibility, balance, and endurance. Yoga can torch anywhere from 180 to 600 calories per hour. Although one would typically burn more calories in a Bikram or power yoga class than in a restorative class, hence, the particular yoga poses one choose matters too.

If you want to drop a few pounds ensure these 7 poses are a regular part of your practice.


This pose burns mega calories because it needs all your muscles to be involved while compelling your body to resist gravity. You can raise the calorie burn even more with variations such as raising one foot an inch or two from the mat. The longer you remain in the pose—from 30 seconds to 5 minutes—the more calories you burn.


To do this move, you need to trigger the largest muscles in the body—the glutes—which completely on its own burns plenty of calories. Chair pose is safe and convenient for all yogis to perform.


It's essentially like holding the low part of a push-up, and when done properly, it will engage nearly all of your major muscle groups. Your core must be contracted, your legs involved and your arms working to sustain a 90-degree angle in the elbows. This pose is extremely difficult and pushes even the most advanced practitioners to use caution and move with control.


Wheel is one pose that you have to warm up for. It needs attention to form and alignment, "opens" the heart, and extends the whole front of the body. The wheel pose involves the legs, buttocks, shoulders, and arms, along with the heart and lungs. You will get your heart rate up higher if you perform wheel in a heated room after a lengthy warm up.

High lunge

It is likely you've seen this pose in a number of workouts apart from yoga, because it works the whole body. It is also a strengthening pose. It demands a bit of balance as you're high up on the ball of your back foot, and any time you add balance to any pose, your body is compelled to work harder and thus burn much more calories.

Sun salutations

Simply a series of 12 poses strung together, sun salutations stimulate the cardiovascular system while engaging the abs, glutes, calves, shoulders, biceps, shoulders, and triceps. They toughen and extend the muscles, fusing breath with movement. Inhales are usually on the expansive pose and the exhales on the contraction. The series oxygenates the blood and strengthens the lungs.


Dolphin is just like downward dog, but your forearms are on the mat. This particular pose both strengthens the body—the arms, core, and legs—as well as stretches it since it opens the shoulders and chest up. Having your forearms on the mat fully engages your triceps, too.

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