Real talk: It takes more than a couple of planks to sculpt a rock-solid mid-section. But adding yoga to your workout routine is an excellent way to give your belly some definition. And while many yoga poses focus on strengthening the core, these stomach toners take top honours. So, bookmark these morning yoga poses for a flat stomach.
You may have performed 100 half-hearted bicycle crunches, but you can finally start seeing results by incorporating these asanas in your morning yoga practice. Yes, these core-strengthening asanas can give you a flat belly faster than banging out a million crunches. The yoga asanas challenge your balance and work your obliques, hip flexors, and even glutes to help you sculpt a seriously strong mid-section. Plus, yoga also provides relief when your belly needs a little debloating.
We have listed down the best yoga poses to practice in the morning for a flat stomach. Bonus: These poses are great for digestion, too!
Morning yoga poses for a flat stomach
1. Paschimottanasana or seated forward bend
Benefits: The seated forward bend not only helps in toning the abdominal muscles but also offers an admirable level of stretch to the thighs, hamstrings and hips. Consistent practice of this yoga pose will help you achieve a flat stomach in no time.
Steps to perform paschimottanasana
- Sit with your spine erect and a relaxed body.
- Stretch your legs forward and point your toes towards the ceiling.
- As you inhale, stretch your arms in front of you and slowly bend forward.
- Try to touch your toes with your hands. If your hands do not reach your toes, stretch a little further and lower your head.
- Take deep breaths in this position and repeat 10 times.
2. Bhujangasana or cobra pose
Benefits: Incorporating bhujangasana in your morning yoga practice will help you work the glutes. It also engages your arms and upper body all while engaging your core. What’s more, the asana works your entire body while keeping your heart rate up.
Steps to perform bhujangasana
- Lie on your stomach while resting your forehead on the ground.
- Place your palms in such a way that they touch the ground under your shoulders. Your feet and heels should lightly touch each other.
- As you inhale, slowly lift your head, chest and abdomen while keeping your naval on the floor.
- Now pull your torso back with the support of your hands.
- Take slow, deep breaths, as you curve your spine, vertebra by vertebra. If possible, arch your back, straighten your arms and tilt your head back.
- Hold the pose for 4-5 breaths and repeat 4-5 times.
3. Hastapadasana or standing forward bend
Benefits: This yoga pose engages your abs and back muscles. It is also an excellent movement for rehab from back injury. Apart from working as a core strengthening asana, it also provides flexibility to the spine.
Steps to perform hastapadasana
- Stand straight with your arms alongside the body and your feet together.
- As you inhale, extend your arms overhead.
- Breathing out, bend forward without bending your knees.
- You can rest your hands either on the floor or on your legs.
- As you exhale, lift your hips and tailbone, and let the head relax.
- Then as you inhale, stretch your arms forward and slowly come back to the standing position.
- Then breathe out and bring your arms to the sides of your body.
4. Viparita Shalabhasana or superman pose
Benefits: Master this yoga asana and you will have those lower abs showing in no time. Viparita shalabhasana is an excellent pose to work your ab muscles, transverse ab muscles, obliques and lower back.
Steps to perform Viparita Shalabhasana
- Lie on your stomach with your chin resting on the ground.
- Keep your legs close and stretch your arms out in front.
- As you inhale gently lift your chest, arms, legs, and thighs off the floor. You should resemble a flying Superman!
- Keep breathing in this position and ensure that your elbows and knees are not bent.
- As you breathe out, gently lower your chest, arms, and legs.
5. Setubandhasana or bridge pose
Benefits: Achieving a flat mid-section isn’t possible with a weak upper body and the lats are the biggest muscle in the upper body. Setubandhasana helps strengthen the lats while working on your hip muscles. This asana holds the abs tight and also does wonders for your glutes and back.
Steps to perform setubandhasana
- Lie on your back and place your arms by the side of your body.
- Keep your feet hip distance apart and fold your knees. Your knees and ankles should be in a straight line.
- As you breathe in, genlty lift your lower, middle and upper back off the floor.
- Roll your shoulders and try to touch your chest with your chin.
- Keep your thighs parallel to each other.
- Then interlace your fingers and push the hands on the floor to lift the torso further up.
- Hold this posture for a minute as you take long, deep breaths.
- Then gently release and come out of the pose.
6. Dhanurasana or the bow pose
Benefits: Dhanurasana stretches the abdominal muscles and helps improve metabolism. While this yoga pose can be a helpful addition to your weight loss plan, it should be combined with a clean diet, to see remarkable results.
Steps to perform dhanurasana
- Lie on your stomach and place your arms by the side of your body.
- Fold your knees and hold your ankles.
- As you inhale, lift your chest off the ground.
- Pull your legs up and pay attention to your breath. Stretch only as much as you are comfortable.
- As you breathe out, gently lower your chest and legs to the ground. Release the ankles and relax.
7. Navasana or boat pose
Benefits: Navasana is an excellent asana to strengthen your abdominal muscles. This yoga pose works your core, back, shoulders traps, and arms, all while building muscular endurance. Plus, your heart rate will stay elevated when you hold the pose, so you will burn calories.
Steps to perform navasana
- Lie on your back while placing your arms by the side of your body.
- Then lift your chest and feet off the ground, such that your fingers and toes are in the same line. As the abdominal muscles contract, you can feel the tension in your abdominal area.
- Take slow, deep breaths and hold the pose for as long as you are comfortable.
- Then as you exhale, slowly lower your hands and legs.
8. Phalakasana II or forearm plank pose
Benefits: Forearm way is an exclellent way to work your obliques, strengthen your deep front and fire up your arms at the same time. This asana also focuses on your lower abdominal muscles helping you strengthen your core.
Steps to perform phalakasana II
- Begin in the plank pose and lower your forearms, one arm at a time.
- Place your elbows directly under your shoulders.
- As you firm your shoulder blades, push your heels back.
- Then as you engage your thighs, draw in your belly
- Take 4-5 slow, deep breaths in this position and lower your body.
Bid adieu to that belly fat with these yoga poses and bring your A game to the mat every morning.
Hero and feature image: Courtesy Pexels
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
- How do I keep my stomach flat in the morning?
Practice yoga for a flat stomach. Yoga works your obliques, hip flexors, and even glutes to help you sculpt a seriously strong mid-section. Plus, yoga also provides relief when your belly needs a little debloating.
- Which yoga poses reduce belly fat?
Yoga poses such as bhujangasana, navasana and shalabhasana are excellent to reduce belly fat.
- Does kapalbhati help reduce belly fat?
Yes, kapalbhati works the abdominal muscles and aids in reducing belly fat.
- How many months does it take to reduce belly fat by yoga?
With consistent yoga practice, you will be able to notice some definition in your mid-section within a month.