To remain fit, active and to keep up good health one must include some or the other kind of physical activity in their routine. There can be many options like exercise, sports or yoga to make a part of your daily routine for healthy living. Yoga asanas have a deeper significance value in the development of the physical, mental and spiritual personality of a person. Pure exercises on the other hand have a physical effect on our muscles and bones only. Exercise puts your body under a lot of rigorous work that helps in burning some calories while bringing flexibility to your body movements as well as to your mind. Yoga can make your body, mind & soul in a calm way. Yogic exercises develop flexibility and the ability to adapt to the new environment if practiced correctly and they help in developing stamina.
What is yoga?
Yoga does not only deal with the physical health of an individual. The ancient science of yoga has been developed in such a way that it acts on the internal organs of the body and benefits one not just physically, but mentally, intellectually and spiritually also. With yoga one can expect increased flexibility, toning and strengthening.
What is exercise?
Exercise refers to any physical activity which causes muscles and certain vital organs in the body to become energized. It is planned, structured and repetitive for the purpose of conditioning any part of the body used to improve health and maintain fitness.
Difference between yoga and exercise
Although it can be argued that gym workouts are better than yoga and vice-versa. Since both activities are good for your health, physically as well as mentally, it is very difficult to say which one is better.
The first and foremost is that one requires a gym and proper machines/accessories whereas, yoga could be done anywhere, at home or in the park. The main objective of yoga is to create an absolute balance of the interacting activities and processes of the physical body, mind and energy. Most people who do yoga can also improve their physical appearance and health, the ultimate goal of yoga is to reach a higher state of consciousness. It is responsible for stimulating digestive secretions, dilating blood vessels, slowing the heart, and constricting the pupils. In other words, doing yoga produces a feeling of relaxation.
On the other hand, exercise is to improve overall physical fitness level and health by practicing aerobic activity, which elevates the heart rate. Exercise improves both the strength and the efficiency of your cardiovascular system to get the oxygen and nutrients to your muscles. When your cardiovascular system works better everything seems easier and you have more energy. Regular exercise can boost the immune system and also improve mental health. The more you exercise, the more calories you burn. In addition, the more muscle you develop, the higher your metabolic rate becomes. Exercise makes you lose energy and makes you feel tired. Yoga helps to conserve energy and makes you feel refreshed.
Yoga, on the other hand, results in relatively low caloric consumption, which is why yoga people generally consume less food than people who exercise. Exercise involves a high risk of injury because most physical activities greatly affect the muscles and ligaments. Yoga involves a low risk of injury because the poses have little impact on the muscles and ligaments. Yoga helps in a lot of things that exercise cannot, but it delivers results over a period of time. It takes longer to achieve results with yoga. However, with gym sessions, you can achieve results at a much quicker than yoga. The time exercise takes to deliver a fitter body is lesser than the time yoga takes to deliver the same.
Despite these major differences in yoga and exercise, one cannot state which is better than the other. It all comes down to the goals you are looking at while planning your work out sessions.
For senior citizens and people feeling depression or stress, yoga is outstanding as it is the best home remedy for mental health. Whereas gym is a better option for people who want to build muscles, biceps, abs and chest. Other systems of physical exercises increase the toxins in the body, whereas asanas reduce the toxin level. One cannot say that gym is better or yoga is better as both have their benefits on our body.