How Many Calories Does Yoga Burn?

While everyone knows that you need to do regular exercise for a healthy, toned, fit looking body, not every exercise program is for everyone.

For many people, yoga is not only relaxing, but it helps them stay limber and fit while protecting the joints of the body. What most people don't realize, however, are exactly how many calories you can actually burn doing yoga. Not all yoga is created equal!

Let's take a look at the 4 most common types of yoga and how many calories you can expect to burn each hour, on average, for a 150 pound person. If you weigh less, you will probably burn fewer calories and those who weigh more will likely burn more.

Calories Burned for Yoga

Hatha Yoga
Number of Calories Burned Per Hour: 170

Hatha Yoga

When most people speak of "going to yoga class", this is the type of yoga they are referring to. This is a generic type of yoga that teaches you the physical postures. This is probably the most common type of yoga taught in the US. If a class simply lists itself as "yoga", you can bet it's Hatha yoga.

Although you won't burn as many calories as you might in other types of classes, you will be burning calories, learning the basics, and feeling longer, looser, and more relaxed than before you started.

Ashtanga Yoga
Number of Calories Burned Per Hour: 395

Ashtanga Yoga

While Ashtanga is based on the ancient teachings of yoga, its popularity has fallen by the wayside in the US. This rigorous style of yoga has you do a specific sequence of postures that links each movement to a breath. Ashtanga always performs the exact same yoga poses in the same order, but this does not mean it is easy.

Ashtanga is a rigorous, pushing your limits, physically demanding regimen, which is how you burn this number of calories in only 1 hour!

Bikram Yoga
Number of Calories Burned Per Hour: 500

Bikram Yoga

The number of calories burned per hour might seem impossible, but if you have ever watched one of these classes, you won't be too surprised. Like Ashtanga, Bikram (sometimes called Hot Yoga) always follows the same sequence of poses, but you will sweat in places you never thought possible as these yoga classes are held in super heated rooms.

Bikram Choudhury developed this 26 sequence of poses about 30 years ago and the program has, almost literally, caught fire with popularity in the past decade. No matter where you live, you can probably find this type of class in your neighborhood.

Vinyasa Yoga
Number of Calories Burned Per Hour: 540

Vinyasa Yoga

No, that number is not a typo! While most people believe that Bikram yoga is the top calorie burner, it is Vinyasa that takes the prize. The word Vinyasa is a Sanskrit word which, roughly translated, means "To Place in a Special Way".

These yoga classes are best known for their fluid movements, with classes moving very smoothly from pose to pose, almost like a dance. In fact, don’t be surprised to find some soft music played in the background to help inspire you. Don’t let those soft movements fool you, however, the intensity of this type of yoga is right up there with Ashtanga, however, the routine can vary from class to class.

If you get bored easily and want to burn calories like never before, this is the type of yoga you must try.

Many people, anxious to lose weight quickly, think that yoga poses done more quickly will mean faster weight loss. This isn’t the case. Don’t sacrifice alignment and proper position for speed.