Yoga and exercise are not the same. Today, most fitness programs teach exercises, Yoga asanas, pranayama, Tai Chi, aerobics, martial arts, etc or a combination of these. Though all of these are aimed at maintaining and improving health, few understand the difference between the Yoga asanas and other forms of fitness methods.
Exercises are aimed at building your muscles and physical strength and endurance. Exercises involve repetition of certain movements aimed at building a certain group of muscles, thereby increasing the muscle weight and improving the strength of those body parts. It increases the blood supply to those parts. Most exercises increase your breath rate and heart rate. You consume more oxygen during exercises than when you are doing your daily routine activities.
A lot of us are not sure about the difference between a Yoga and Physical exercise and often wonder whether one is better than the other. If you too are not sure, read on to find out. Here are some of the differences in a general sense:
- In the practice of Yoga, the oxygen consumption is reduced whereas in physical exercise the oxygen consumption is increased.
- In Yoga, the respiration rate falls, whereas in exercise it increases. This is because physical exercises are generally done very quickly and with a lot of heavy breathing, therefore the respiratory system is forced to work much harder.
- In Yoga, the body temperature drops whereas while exercising it tends to rise.
- In asana, the body’s metabolic rate drops whereas with exercise it is seen to increase.
- In asana, the muscles receive minimum nutrition/ oxygen and the organs receive more, whereas, in Physical exercise, it is the muscles that receive the most nutrition/ oxygen.
- In asana, the blood pressure and heart rate decrease, whereas in exercise they increase as your heart is working harder.