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Is Yoga A Workout Or Meditation?
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Yoga has become mainstream in recent years. And while we can all agree that not everything that is mainstream is good, yoga does live up to the hype.

Practicing yoga regularly is good for health, both physical and mental. But what exactly is yoga? Is yoga a workout or meditation? Let’s find out!

What Is Yoga?

The practice of yoga has a history of 5,000 years. It was developed in northern India and is now a popular practice in numerous countries, including the US, Canada, China, countries of Europe, etc.

Yoga is an integrity of physical, mental, and spiritual practices. This is why it has such a wide range of benefits. The mental health benefits of yoga include reduced stress and anxiety, calmness, improved attention and concentration.

As for physical health, practicing yoga helps with flexibility, strengthens muscles, increases energy levels, promotes weight loss, etc.

The benefits of yoga may slightly differ depending on the type you are practicing. There are different yoga styles you can practice. Some of them, like vinyasa and ashtanga yoga, are athletic and have a greater physical impact.

There are also styles of yoga in which meditation elements prevail and they don’t require as much physical exertion.

 What Is Mindfulness? Mindfulness is the quality or ability to be fully conscious.
Does Yoga Count As A Workout?

You may feel like you have to go to the gym to be physically strong and fit. But the truth is that the gym isn’t for everyone. Not because it is not effective but because some people may simply not enjoy the way it works.

Luckily, there are many ways to stay healthy and be physically active without going to the gym. You can engage in other types of physical activities, including walking, cycling, various sports, group workouts, etc. For some people, yoga happens to be a replacement for the gym too.

There are many reasons why you may prefer yoga over the gym and other types of strength workouts. Yoga trains the body while not being very intense. You can do yoga anywhere you like – at home, out in nature, or in a yoga center.

Lastly, the reason why so many people choose yoga as their regular physical activity is that it largely benefits their mental and spiritual health.

But even if this is the case, the real question is – does yoga count as a workout?

Despite the strength yoga poses require and all the physical benefits this practice has, experts, agree that yoga doesn’t count as a workout. Even if you do practice yoga, it is recommended to also do more vigorous forms of exercise to keep you in your best physical shape unless you have any health restrictions.
 Self-awareness is the conscious knowledge of your own self. It is the ability to focus on your thoughts, emotions, traits, and feelings.
Why Yoga Isn’t A Workout

While yoga can help combat weight gain, it doesn’t burn as many calories as such activities as weight training, running, swimming, and cycling.

Yoga is not an aerobic exercise, i.e. your heart rate doesn’t increase when you do yoga. On the contrary, most yoga styles make the heart rate go down along with the blood pressure.

Doing aerobic exercises regularly is important as they reduce the risk of many conditions. This type of exercises are particularly important for improving cardiovascular conditioning.

In case you didn’t know, cardiovascular conditioning is improving circulation and strengthening the heart through vigorous forms of exercise, including running, swimming, hiking, cycling, etc.

If for whatever reason yoga is the only exercise you are doing, choose a yoga style with higher intensity. Considering the length of your yoga classes is important too.

If your time and physical health permit, combine aerobic exercises with yoga for the best results.
Mindfulness Vs Self-Awareness Mindfulness and self-awareness are closely related. But they are not the same. What are the differences between mindfulness and self-awareness?
Is Yoga A Form Of Meditation?

Some people consider yoga to be a workout. Many others believe that yoga is the same as meditation.

Yoga is different from meditation. Meditation is one of the elements of yoga along with breathing techniques and poses that require physical strength.

Yoga Vs Meditation: The Differences

Despite the few similarities yoga and meditation share, there are a few key differences between these practices.

In short, yoga has physical and mental aspects while meditation is only mental. Meditation is a practice that pursuits relaxation, tranquility, and a focused mind.

Here are the three main differences between yoga and meditation.

  • Purpose. The key purpose of yoga is to achieve harmony in the body and mind and built physical and mental strength. The purpose of meditation, on the hand, is to foster mindfulness and awareness of the present moment.
  • Benefits. You will experience similar spiritual and mental health benefits from meditation and yoga. But yoga also has physical benefits. You can achieve mental stability and inner peace with both practices but only yoga helps achieve physical stability.
  • Activity level. Lastly, yoga, no matter which style you practice, requires a certain degree of physical activity. Meditation, on the other hand, can be fully mental though you can pair it with the physical activity of your choice.
Developing Self-Awareness Through Mindfulness
What Is Yoga Meditation?

As yoga and meditation are two different practices, yoga meditation makes perfect sense. Yoga meditation is the combination of these two highly efficient practices. It is usually done after yoga sessions.

As you would expect, yoga meditation has many benefits. Here are some of them.
  • Reduced anxiety and stress
  • Improved concentration
  • Better sleep
  • Calmness
  • Pain relief
  • Improved mood
It is relatively easy to do yoga meditation. Here is how to do it in a few simple steps.

  1. Create your meditation space. Choose a room with no distractions. You can also meditate in nature.
  2. Get into a comfortable position. You can sit with your legs crossed or lie down.
  3. Close your eyes and keep your palms open and facing upward.
  4. Don’t restrict your thoughts. Let them come and go and don’t judge them.
  5. Meditate for around 5 minutes. You can do a yoga meditation on your own following Youtube videos or guided meditations. If you are taking yoga classes, you can certainly practice yoga meditation with your instructor.
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