After These Yoga Poses, You’ll Feel Proud Baring It on the Beach
Beginner yoga poses may look easy at first glance, but after holding your body still and feeling your muscles burn, you’ll realize these poses are the ticket to rocking your swimsuit. Here are seven beginner yoga poses to strengthen and tone your bikini body.
| Three-Legged Dog
A staple of beginning yoga classes, Downward Facing Dog tones your arms and upper back. Here’s a challenging variation to target your tush as well.
- While in Down Dog, step both feet together. Lift your right leg as high as you can, coming into Three-Legged Dog.
- Keep your shoulders parallel with the floor and take five deep breaths.
- Repeat on the other side.
| Warrior 2
Good old Warrior 2 is another standard posture you’ll find in a yoga class. This standing pose will target the quads and glutes, and since you’re engaging your arms, you’ll also tone your shoulders.
- From Down Dog, step your right foot forward between your hands and rise up into Warrior 1.
- Open your hips, arms, and chest to Warrior 2, making sure your right knee is over your ankle, and your front thigh is parallel with the floor. Gaze past your right hand, holding for five deep breaths.
- Straighten your legs and rotate to the second side for another five.
| Half Moon
Balancing poses challenge your core, and this one will also tone your shoulders, outer thighs, and bum.
- To transition into this pose from Warrior 2, hop off your back foot and place your right hand on the floor underneath your shoulder. If this is too difficult, bend your right knee or place your hand on a block.
- Extend your left leg behind you and your left arm in the air, balancing in Half Moon for five breaths.
- Rise up and repeat on the other side.
This variation of Fierce pose looks simple enough, but it sure will bring on the thigh-and-butt burn.
- Stand with your feet together. Inhale to bend your knees and lower your hips as you raise your arms overhead, coming into Fierce pose. Exhale to cross your right elbow over to your outer left knee. Press your palms together and actively push your bottom elbow against your thigh to lift and rotate your chest up, increasing the twist. Pull your right hip back slightly, making sure both knees are parallel.
- Stay for five breaths in Side Fierce, then inhale as you press into your feet and lift your torso, rising back into Fierce pose. Exhale to cross your left elbow over your right outer knee, holding for another five breaths on this side.
This pose is a fun way to tone the backside of your body, especially the backs of your legs. You’ll also feel a nice opening in the chest.
- Lie on your belly with your legs together and your arms by your sides, palms facing up.
- Bend both knees and hold on to the outsides of your ankles.
- Actively draw your feet together, lifting them as high as you can, holding for five breaths.
If you’re looking to tone your abs, try this effective pose.
- Sit on the floor, bend both knees, and extend your arms straight out on either side of the legs so they’re parallel with the floor.
- Stay here or work on straightening the legs, trying not to round the spine.
- Hold for five deep breaths, relaxing the shoulders.
| Half Wheel
This relaxing pose will increase flexibility in your spine, as well as tone your bum and thighs.
- Lie on your back, bend your knees, and place your feet flat on the floor. With your palms and feet pressing firmly into the ground, lift your hips into the air.
- Bring the hands to the lower back for support, holding for five breaths.