How Long To Hold A Yoga Pose To Get The Best Out Of It?

How long to hold a yoga pose? – is probably the most frequently asked questions for the people who just got started practicing yoga.

Well, I don’t blame them, I’ve actually been through the same path as well. There’s even this saying that the pose only starts when you want to quit – sounds quite a challenge, don’t you think?

Basically, yoga is all about becoming a better version of yourself. Testing your strengths and limits, especially your flexibility.

However, it’s not a good idea to go for more than what you can. You see, experiencing acute pain is not what yoga’s intention. Let’s learn more about it down below.

There Are Factors To Consider

the factors to consider in yoga

While I would love to give you a straight answer so we can get this over with, I can’t. It’s not because I don’t know the answer, but it’s because I don’t know what the best answer is for you.

If you’ve tried going to yoga sessions, then you’ll find how the instructors don’t always tell you on how long to hold a specific pose. The reason why is because the answer is different from one person to another. So yes, there are a lot of answers to consider.

Digging deeper to what yoga is, it generally is what’s meant for your body. Try to look at your yoga buddies, you might notice the difference between your pose and theirs. Simply put, we go for what’s best for us.

With that being said, there are situations where you have to keep on holding the pose for a shorter period of time. At the same time, you may have to hold it longer than the rest of the people just to get equal benefits.

Here are some things you need to consider:

1. Your physical fitness

If you’ve been a couch potato for too long, you can’t automatically jump to hold extreme poses. Chances are, you’re even struggling to hold a basic pose. Don’t force yourself to do anything reckless, with time and training, you’ll eventually be able to hold out longer.

2. Your age

Now, this is quite debatable. As there are some pretty fit people who are in their 50s and 60s, but if you haven’t been active in any way, then age is definitely a factor. In any case, if you’re too young or too old to do a pose long enough, and you feel pain, then don’t attempt to go any further.

3. Medical conditions

If you happen to have any medical condition that forbids you from practicing yoga – or a particular pose – then don’t do it. Always listen to what the expert says.

4. Willpower

Forcing yourself to do yoga isn’t the way to be a successful yogi. If you don’t feel like it, then don’t do it. Once you’ve cleared your mind from any stress and your body is ready, then that’s a green signal.

It Depends On Your Yoga Pose

it depends your yoga pose

Another thing you have to take into consideration is the yoga pose you’re doing. Generally, you should be able to hold on to your yoga pose for a number of breaths. It should be around 3 to 5 breaths. On average, this may reach up to thirty seconds. Depending on how what you’re feeling, of course.

However, it’ll mostly depend on the pose. If you’ve tried doing Vinyasa (flow) Yoga this is highly related to your breath. There are times where you can just hold it in during an exhale or an inhale. It means you only have limited time.

What I’m trying to reach out to you is that Vinyasa Yoga is so much more than that. It’s actually a moving meditation – just move your body up to the limits of your strength. So you need to take into account your feelings both mentally and physically.

Let’s take a closer look on the other side. There are other styles you’re going to encounter in the future. I’m talking about Yin Yoga and Restorative Yoga. Unlike the previous style, the pose could last for a whopping 3 to 5 minutes. There are even cases where you can extend the 5 minute period.

I’m not saying that this is an easy thing to do – it’s far from that. You have to get your connective tissues to release in order to achieve this style. You might need help from props to make your body feel relaxed, maintaining an open mind, proper breathing, and you’ll be able to get into the pose.

There are different styles of yoga. Don’t worry, one is not better than the other. It’s more about your preference more than anything else.

Think About Your Objectives

many different styles yoga

Just like how there are different styles of yoga, there are also different reasons why people do it. This will help determine how long you should hold the pose – although I wouldn’t be able to give you a solid number, you can still use it as a guide.

Now, if you’re someone who’s looking to enhance your flexibility, then going for poses which required to be maintained longer is the key for you as long as it does not require any acute pain.

If that’s not your goal, and you simply want to keep your mind alert and advanced, then there’s no pressure. You can keep it as short or as long as you want it to be. Remember: If it works for you, then that’s all you need to do.

Wrapping It Up

Yoga is one great practice that helps you find inner peace and yourself at the same time. I believe I’ve answered your question: There’s no ideal time. It’s more about learning and progressing as you go on.

There’s no need to hurry, just keep up your tempo. If you want to help your friends out, make sure to share this article with them. If you have any questions please comment down below, we’ll be more than happy to answer them for you.


I'm Dent: mom, wife and household CEO living in the Santiago de Cali. I'm absolutely in love with fitness blogs and I created to all of you to be the best they can be. After all, it's never too late to be your best you!

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