Ideal Duration for Holding a Yoga Pose?
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The question of Duration for Holding a Yoga Pose is a common one, especially among yoga novices. The duration of holding a yoga pose varies based on the type of pose and its intended purpose, rather than a fixed timeframe.
If you’re new to yoga, you might be curious about the optimal duration for each pose.
The duration for holding a yoga pose is largely dependent on your yoga goals, the specific pose, and its purpose.
Certain poses are designed to build strength, such as the high plank, boat pose, and feathered peacock pose. Others, like the downward dog and bound angle pose, aim to enhance flexibility, while some poses like the corpse pose are meant for meditation.
As a yoga beginner, you’re likely practicing Hatha yoga, which is ideal for beginners due to its basic poses.
How is the duration of yoga poses determined?
Rather than timing, yoga poses are often held for a certain number of breaths. This is because yoga is about centering oneself and connecting with the body.
Yoga is a journey to be savored, not just a workout, so you can hold yoga poses for as long as you deem necessary.
However, as yoga has become more mainstream and adopted by those accustomed to structured workouts, the question of how long to hold yoga poses has become more relevant.
So, for a beginner eager to delve into yoga and reap its physical and mental benefits, it’s a pertinent question.
What’s the ideal duration for holding a yoga pose?
While there’s no definitive duration for holding yoga poses, there are basic guidelines that can help us maximize the benefits of yoga.
In a beginner’s yoga sequence like Hatha yoga, you’d typically hold poses for 1-2 breaths per asana (pose), up to 10 breaths. If you prefer timing, each pose should be held for 30 to 120 seconds.
At Start Right Yoga, we typically recommend holding each pose for at least 5 breaths, up to 10 depending on the pose, to help you familiarize yourself with each pose.
Poses that enhance flexibility, like the downward-facing dog and child pose, may be held for longer durations, up to 10 breaths.
In yoga, there’s no need to rush. Relax into each pose and hold it until you feel ready to transition.
If your goal is to increase flexibility, aim to hold each pose for 30-60 seconds.
For a morning yoga routine to energize your body, shorter holds of 1-2 breaths or around 30 seconds are sufficient.
What’s the ideal duration for holding a yoga pose for relaxation?
For relaxation, poses like the easy pose can be held for over 10 minutes as you clear your mind.
When practicing yoga for relaxation, it’s easy to lose track of time and even doze off in some poses.
As a yoga beginner, you might find some poses challenging or even painful.
Yoga shouldn’t cause pain. You should only hold a pose until it becomes uncomfortable.
Maintain each yoga pose until you can’t anymore, then each time you revisit those challenging poses, try to hold them a bit longer. Over time, you’ll become stronger, more flexible, and confident.
Unlike gym workouts where you perform a set number of reps for muscle tone and strength, yoga is more of a spiritual discipline that unites body and mind and can be performed at your own pace.
Many yoga poses are stretches and if your goal is to become more flexible, which yoga is perfect for, science suggests that holds of 30-60 seconds are ideal for improving flexibility.
In summary, the duration for holding a yoga pose largely depends on your yoga goals.