Yoga Poses that Burn the Most Calories

Yoga isn’t only stretching and chilling out on a mat. It can be a great workout and can torch some major calories!


Yoga builds muscles, which helps burn fat, and increases your heart rate, which helps boost your metabolism! So get excited to fire up your metabolism so that it burns calories more efficiently at rest with this energizing yoga inspired workout.



As with the many different fitness styles, there are also different types of yoga that accomplish different goals. Depending on the yoga style, the practice is either a set sequence performed each time or a ‘free flow’ sequence of poses chosen by the instructor that are appropriate to the class type and student level.


In terms of burning extra calories, Bikram or Power yoga will burn more than Restorative yoga. More powerful styles of yoga include:


  • Bikram Yoga: a type of hatha yoga that practices a set series of postures and breathing exercises in a heated room for roughly 90 minutes.


  • Power Yoga: a vigorous, faster paced yoga style that flows through various strength and flexibility poses while focusing on breathing.


  • Vinyasa Flow: a dynamic flow of postures that link the movement to breathing.


The poses performed also impact the intensity level by challenging your body to work harder, and therefore, burn more calories. With that said, there are poses that do burn more calories than others. These are poses that engage every muscle group at once along with flexibility, balance, stability, and control. Yoga is no walk in park!



I’ve created an amazing calorie burning yoga flow routine that trains and conditions the entire body. It’s a unique blend of the best calorie burning poses that equally trains strength, flexibility, balance and endurance. The poses can be performed on a mat as well as on your Total Gym for a dynamic challenge.


All levels can be challenged and benefit from this routine by adjusting the incline level appropriately for each pose. The incline setting either challenges strength or helps accommodate flexibility. Think of the incline as your yoga ‘prop’ that allows you to increase or decrease the intensity of the pose, as you would use a yoga block.


The poses chosen in this series will dynamically take your yoga practice to the next level on your Total Gym!



If you’re looking to sweat out a few pounds and tone your entire body, make sure you include these poses into your regular yoga practice or current fitness routine!


The Practice:

All of the poses contain elements of strength, core balance, stability, and flexibility. They are grouped into categories that focus on these different goals.  The sequences should flow seamlessly from one movement to the next to challenge your body. The slower the movement is performed and the longer you hold the pose, the more calories you will burn!


Mind-Body Burning Benefits:

This invigorating sequence of dynamic poses will increase circulation, stimulate your internal organs, and self-repair your essential tissues. The movements are designed to recharge and enhance your body’s ability to burn more calories while increasing your energy.


This practice will compliment your current fitness program and enhance your athletic performance. Here are some other benefits this workout provides:

  • Develops overall strength while toning muscles
  • Increases dynamic flexibility
  • Improves balance and coordination
  • Boosts mobility and stability



  • 2-3 times per week

Aim to perform this dynamic yoga strength workout 2-3 times per week in addition to your current routine. The movements will become more comfortable and easier to hold with consistent practice.



  • Perform each combo in circuit format, one exercise after the other with no rest.
  • Perform the poses and movements slowly with core control.
  • Hold a static pose for a few breaths before moving to the next one and perform 5 reps for each dynamic pose.
  • Learn the exercises so that they flow seamlessly in each combo sequence.
  • Repeat the combos as directed.



  • Mat &/or Total Gym

These yoga poses can be performed on a yoga mat as well as on your Total Gym.  The accompanying video demonstrates this workout on the Total Gym equipment.



Take a few minutes to get your blood flowing, heart rate slightly elevated, and muscles warmed up with dynamic movements or Sun Salutations.


COMBO 1: Core Mobility, Stability, & Upper Body Strength

  • Start on a Low Incline
  • Hold and exhale your breath a couple times in each pose
  1. Chair + twist
  2. 3 legged down dog
  3. Knee to nose
  4. Crescent pose + twist

*Repeat combo on other side


COMBO 2: Core Balance & Lower Body Strength

  • Start with Low to Medium Incline
  • 5 reps each dynamic pose

NOTE: A lower incline challenges balance, flexibility, and core strength. A higher incline accommodates flexibility, but is more challenging for upper body strength.

  1. Dolphin Plank Rocks (remain parallel for increased core challenge)
  2. Standing Split Lift
  3. Half moon Reaches
  4. Dynamic Pyramid Pose

*Repeat combo on other side


COMBO 3: Core Strength

  • Connect Cables to Total Gym
  • Start with Low to Medium Incline
  • 5 slow reps
  1. Quadruped knee to elbow
  2. Boat Pose / Paripurna Navasana

*Repeat combo twice


COMBO 4: Inverted Strength

  • Disconnect Cables
  • Start with Low – Medium Incline
  1. Bridge Curls (5 slow reps)
  2. Wheel (hold pose a few breaths)

*Repeat combo twice


Be sure to check out the video to see how these invigorating sequences are performed on your Total Gym!


Burning extra calories with these powerful poses is a challenging, yet fun way to rev up your heart rate and strengthen your entire body. Enjoy incorporating a more dynamic practice while doing yoga and experience the amazing results that you just cannot get from your everyday yoga class.





Maria Sollon

Maria Sollon Scally MS, CSCS holds a Master’s Degree in Performance Enhancement/Injury Prevention and Kinesiology. She has obtained numerous certifications in various areas of fitness and is a national conference presenter. Maria specializes in Pilates, Performance Coaching, and Corrective Exercise Techniques and Kettlebells. She is the creator of the Plyo Pilates Method and has developed a series of amazing workout DVDs. She is a Master Trainer for Total Gym, Resist-a-Ball, Body Blade, Peak Pilates, Kettle Bell Concepts and is a freelance writer for Fitness accredited magazines, newsletters, and fitness blog sites. Maria demonstrates her knowledge each day and uses her dynamic creativity throughout her specialized line of work. (purchasable workout videos) (workout clips)

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