Yoga is praised for its ability to improve your fitness and cardiovascular health while alleviating feelings of stress and anxiety. But is yoga enough without supplemental fitness activities? By understanding the effect yoga has on the body, you can determine whether you need to incorporate additional exercises into your yoga regimen. Here, Winnipeg’s Gabriel Patterson discusses the impact of yoga on the body and answers some of the most common questions.
1) How Does Yoga Improve Fitness?
Yoga is the process of carefully moving into position, slowly stretching the muscles and improving balance. Yoga builds muscle strength and endurance as you progress to holding positions for longer periods of time and fluidly moving into new poses. Regularly practicing yoga can improve cardiovascular health and reduce the risk of heart disease. Yoga also increases lung capacity since it places an emphasis on deep breathing.
2) Can Yoga Be Your Main Source of Exercise?
If your main goal is to improve your fitness, yoga can be used as your only source of exercise. Studies show that regularly practicing yoga increases lung capacity, endurance, and strength. Practicing yoga at least four days a week for a duration of one hour is enough to improve your fitness levels. If you have specific goals that aren’t being achieved through yoga, consider supplementing your yoga practices with strength or cardio workouts.
3) Is It Best to Supplement with Cardio and Strength Training?
If you’re working towards a healthier lifestyle, the best choice is an exercise you can stick with every day. Yoga can be used to supplement other workouts, or it can be practiced alone. If you find that the calming practice of yoga is preferable to intense workouts, you don’t need to worry that you’re not doing enough. As you advance in your abilities, your strength will continue to improve and you will notice a difference in your body.
4) Does Yoga Burn a Significant Amount of Calories?
Yoga and walking burn a similar amount of calories. However, yoga builds lean muscle and provides the opportunity to progress to more challenging techniques to push your body. If your goal is to lose weight, there are varieties of yoga that are more intense and burn more calories.
5) Is Yoga Sustainable Long-Term?
One of the greatest benefits of yoga is its low risk of injury. More strenuous forms of cardio and strength exercises encourage you to push your body to the limit, raising the potential for injury. Yoga slowly trains your body and mind as you advance in difficulty, giving your body time to adjust. Unlike some other forms of exercise, yoga can be practiced throughout an entire lifespan. It is also a great alternative exercise when recovering from a previous injury.
Yoga has been shown to have a positive impact on fitness when practiced regularly without additional exercise. Depending on your goals, it can also be used as a supplement to other forms of exercise in order to improve flexibility and endurance. Yoga decreases the risk of injury and burns enough calories to promote weight loss when used in addition to a healthy diet. Ultimately, as Gabriel Patterson detailed above, practicing yoga as a primary source of exercise will improve your body’s fitness and mental wellness – to support Patterson, visit Kickstarter.