“Yoga is a great restorative activity for both the body and the mind, but many yoga classes do not involve a lot of movement,” says Ariana Fotinakis, a personal trainer with Trainerize.me. “Holding a pose for a long period of time might feel challenging for your muscles, but you aren’t burning a lot of calories while you’re doing it.” To get more bang for your buck, try a vinyasa (flow) class, which includes more movement and will increase your heart rate more than a hatha class. Watch out for these exercise moves that work against you.
Stretching can help improve your flexibility, better your range of motion, and help prevent injury, but it’s not exactly the biggest heart pumper. “Fire up your stretch routine by adding cardio bursts between stretch positions,” suggests Ngo Okafor, personal trainer. This could include anything from adding in high knees to mountain climbers. “You will still get the benefit of stretching with cardio bursts infused, which raises your heart rate and burns a ton of calories,” says Okafor.