5 ways to intensify your yoga // that are NOT hot yoga!

no time for child’s pose, people!

sometimes you want to kick it up a notch. some yogis think HOT YOGA when they envision an intense yoga class, but there are simple ways to add extra strength to any style class, or during your home practice. are you still developing your home yoga routine? check this post for my tips on making a home yoga sanctuary. or, head outside!

when I’m short on time I’ll roll out my mat, add these moves, and then check off both strength and yoga at one time. easy! be careful on hot humid days, if you’re practicing outside like I did, it’s practically hot yoga.

air conditioning, unlike child’s pose, is totally an option.


double chaturanga.
chaturanga kaleinit yoga flow kaleinit

i got my first dose of the “double chat” from Justin Reilley (ig: @thetattooedyogi), and it was killer. with each vinyasa, lower into chaturanga, back up to plank and do it again before moving to upward dog. you’re doubling your number of chaturangas in your practice this way and if you’re doing a vinyasa flow, those arm strengthening moves will add up!

more on Justin coming to the blog soon. I’m catching up with him about how the hell to handstand, what it’s like to open a yoga studio, and why he loves to practice.

chair pose kaleinit yoga flowchair pose pulse.

a glorified yogi squat. i throw in some pulses to work the bey-hind when in chair pose (as if it’s not intense enough, right??) this can also be achieved by raising up a bit from malasana and pulse, or even throw a squat (or 10) in after a relaxing “rag doll” forward fold when feet are hips distance apart.  just watch the knees, don’t go past the toes.

side plank dips.

side plank feels so strong and powerful. I reach through the fingertips of the raised hand and strive to pull the lower hip toward the sky.

leg variations like tree pose in side plank are great too. try alternating between dipping your inner hip down to hover over the floor, and back up. repeat 10x on each side before continuing your flow.

side plank yoga flow kaleinit

forearm plank sways.

i love working the obliques. this has long been my favorite way to intensify forearm planks. sway your hips from left to right, keeping the booty down! maintain a straight back and move slowwwwly to really feel the burn in the side body.

bonus challenge? do this. side plank… to side plank dips…back to plank… lower to forearm plank…forearm plank sways, back to plank,  repeat. boom.

pick up the pace.

while still maintaining the integrity of the vinyasa, pick up the pace in your initial sun salutations. one thing that helps me is to choose a more upbeat, faster song. dance with the music and move with speed and confidence as you flow from upward dog to down dog. I bet you’ll be warmed up in no time at all.


there you go, strengthening (and sweaty) ways to kick up your yoga routine. have any other  to adding more strengthening moves to yoga? comment below pleaseeee.

forearm plank kaleinit

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1 Comment

  1. June 4, 2016 / 8:54 pm

    I’ve been really bad about getting into yoga because I find that I love intense and quick exercises the most! But I would love to try it out!

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