Level up your yoga session with the cardio in power yoga. Discover the health benefits and basics of a power yoga flow.
There are many ways to do yoga.
You can practice yoga with a primary focus on your breathing. You can try yoga for meditation. You can take gentle yoga classes to help you stretch your body, improve your range of motion, and gain flexibility. If you’re new to the yoga world, these benefits might sound like what you expected from the practice.
But there can be more to it than that! Power yoga is a whole world of yoga unto itself. This guide will tell you everything you need to know about power yoga and what it can do for your wellness regimen… and we know what we’re talking about! From the start, power yoga has been our specialty here at Bulldog Online Yoga. We love introducing people to this brand of yoga, which has so many incredible benefits. We’re pretty confident you’re about to be totally hooked, too.
Table of Contents:
What Is Power Flow Yoga?
According to Grokker, power yoga is sometimes called “gym yoga,” because it was designed with gym-goers in mind! It was developed in the nineties in an effort to bring the Eastern practice of yoga to more Western audiences who were looking for different kinds of results, especially of the fitness-related variety. Power yoga was inspired by Ashtanga, a fast-paced, more intense style of yoga that flows from one pose to the next (instead of pausing between poses) and is still more traditional than power yoga.
Power yoga is more fitness-based than your average yoga flow. Per Yoga Journal, power yoga builds internal heat, increases stamina, boosts strength, increases flexibility, and reduces stress. Power yoga instructors — like our awesome Bulldog Yoga class leaders — design their own sequences, which is one of the coolest things about this more contemporary style of yoga. In this practice, you have the opportunity to use classic yoga poses in such a way that you’ll get a more intense, cardio-driven workout on your mat. It’s a great example of how yoga can really evolve!
Bulldog Online Yoga offers tons of amazing power yoga classes online! Our Exhilarate classes are a step up intensity-wise from a gentle flow — and Invigorate classes take it to an even higher fitness level. Our Yoga Sculpt/Yoga + HIIT classes are also good representations of power yoga in action. You can even filter online classes based on how intense you want your workout session to be! Ready to get after it? We’ve got your back.
“I love Bulldog Online. It’s challenging, fun, and I really enjoy the large variety of online classes!” — Chris T.
Basically, power yoga takes all the health benefits of yoga that are already great and kicks them up a notch to help you meet your fitness goals and feel your best. At Bulldog Online Yoga, we add our special sauce and some great music for an extra fantastic power yoga experience.
Why You Should Try Power Yoga
Power yoga is great for anyone who is looking to shake up their fitness routine, whether they already exercise all the time or are just starting on their exercise journey. Like other types of yoga, power yoga has something to offer you no matter your experience with yoga or other fitness regimens. Sure, your first class or two might be a challenge, but that’s how it works with any new activity! You can build on your strength and stamina from there, and Bulldog Yoga has the wide range of class options you need to help you do just that.
Power yoga — more specifically, Bulldog Yoga — is also great for anyone who is skeptical about or uncomfortable with more traditional yoga styles. Not sure how you feel about meditation? Not interested in using the little personal time you have on gentler physical activities that won’t give you the fitness results you’re looking for? Nervous about interacting with hardcore yogis who view yoga primarily as a spiritual experience?
We get it. Traditional yoga can be great for all of those things, but it’s not for everyone! Power yoga bridges the gap. It gives yoga newbies and skeptics the chance to enjoy the many physical and mental benefits of a yoga practice without feeling the pressure to adapt to a more traditional yoga lifestyle, mindset, or aesthetic. A power yoga class will have the vibe of any other fitness class — bumpin’ music, moves that will get your heart pumping, and plenty of sweat.
You don’t need a working knowledge of Sanskrit or a well-practiced ohm to reap the benefits of a power yoga workout. All you need to show up with is a positive attitude and a readiness to learn… oh, and a bottle of water. (That will help with the sweat.)
Power yoga has tons of benefits. Like other cardio-driven workouts, power yoga can improve your overall heart health, reduce chronic pain, regulate weight, boost your mood, strengthen your immune system, and help you get better sleep, according to Healthline. You’ll also reap the benefits of traditional yoga, such as increased flexibility, mental clarity, core strength, and more.
Want to learn more? Find out what else there is to love about power yoga here!
“No matter your level of yoga or fitness, you have to try this. There is nothing like it!” — Lindsey O.
Power Yoga for Beginners
There’s a power yoga class out there for everyone, including beginners. In fact, power yoga can be a fantastic entry point to the wider yoga world.
Power yoga is great for yoga newbies because it removes any pressure you might feel in a traditional yoga class to integrate with a more meditative aesthetic. Instead, it teaches you the basics of yoga movement so you can flow between poses and reap their health benefits. Once you’ve gotten a handle on the physical aspects of yoga, you can always explore the more traditional elements on the days you’re looking for something a little more mellow or spiritual. You’ll already have the confidence necessary to handle the poses!
Online power yoga classes are especially well-suited for beginners. Practicing yoga online gives you the space you need to learn the basics without feeling self-conscious about people watching you. You get to be in your comfort zone (AKA home turf) while testing the waters of something that may be slightly out of your comfort zone. Plus, if you need to, you can pause the class to reset your body or find more solid footing.
Still not totally convinced? These benefits of power yoga will motivate you to get started!
Get Fit With Power Yoga
Whether you’re a beginner or are further along in your yoga journey, power yoga can make a great addition to your fitness routine. Because of its faster pace, it shares many fitness benefits with cardio workouts like running or cycling. For one thing, these cardio exercises can help boost your metabolism. Per Everyday Health, cardiovascular workouts (like power yoga!) stimulate your metabolism, help burn calories, and temporarily suppress appetite. Weight training has these fitness benefits, too — and since power yoga just so happens to also be a bodyweight, strength-training exercise, it’s basically a double whammy! If your wellness goals include weight management and overall fitness, power yoga can help you get there.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that adults get 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity every week. This is a good place to start as you plan out a fitness-fueling power yoga schedule that will work best for you. Healthline notes that there is no “official” upper limit on the amount of cardio or aerobic exercise you can do. It’s all about building up your fitness level and listening to your body as you get stronger.
“I enjoy the faster pace and music for yoga classes. Try them yourself and see!” — Michelle S.
Power Yoga Sequence (4 Parts) – Chair/Squat/Lunge Series
Now that we’ve laid the groundwork for power yoga and the benefits it has to offer, let’s get moving! This Chair/Squat/Lunge power yoga flow is great for building strength in the lower body and core. We highly recommend that you crank up the volume on your favorite song while you try it!
1) Chair Pose
Begin in Chair Pose — knees bent, legs parallel to the floor, torso leaning forward as if you’re sitting in an invisible chair. Your neck and head should stay in line with your arms and torso. Reach your arms straight up. Inhale.
Step your left foot out to the left side so that you’re standing in a wider squat. Hold your arms straight out to your sides at shoulder height, then bend your elbows so the upper and lower parts of your arms are at a right angle. This is called Cactus Arms. Exhale.
3) Chair Pose
Step your left foot back in so you’re in Chair Pose with your arms reaching straight up again. Inhale.
Step your left foot back into a lunge. Hold your arms straight out to your sides. This is called Airplane Arms. Exhale.
Complete this series ten times on the left side. Then, switch to the right side.
Power Yoga Sequence 2 – Warrior 3 Taps + Lunges
Here’s another power yoga sequence for you! This one comes highly recommended for the booty.
1) Warrior 3
From standing, lift your right knee straight up and inhale. From there, hinge your hips into Warrior 3. Your right knee should reach straight back behind you as your arms reach forward and your torso creates a right angle with your legs. Exhale.
From Warrior 3, tap your right foot and toes down to the floor. Inhale.
3) Warrior 3
Left back up into Warrior 3. Exhale.
4) Courtesy Squat
Step your right foot behind your left standing leg into a Courtesy Squat. This should feel like a deep curtsy. Inhale.
5) Warrior 3
Lift your right leg back into Warrior 3. Exhale.