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“Is yoga better than gym resistance training workouts for your health?”
You’d be amazed by how often we get asked this question. So many people want to maximize the effectiveness of what little exercise time they get every day. They’re looking for the “best” workout they can do to improve whatever aspect of their fitness or health matters most to them—as well they should!
The question “is Yoga better than gym workouts?” is a complicated one, but we’re going to take the time to answer it below. By the time you get to the end of this page, you’ll know exactly which of the two you should be doing for your specific goals!
Is Yoga Better than Gym Training for Strength?
When it comes to building raw power or muscular strength, nothing can beat good old-fashioned weightlifting. The heavier you lift, the more strength you build—it’s simple science, and the results speak for themselves.
Yoga works entirely with your bodyweight, which can be excellent for beginner trainees who are looking to develop greater functional strength. However, when training with just your bodyweight, there is a limit to how much strength you can actually develop. You’ll be able to move your body more easily, but there’s no way you’ll pack on pounds of muscle or grow strong enough to lift hundreds of pounds.
If strength is your goal, you’re better off at the gym.
Is Yoga Better than Gym Training for Endurance?
Muscular endurance is different from strength. Strength is the ability to lift heavy things, but endurance is the ability to sustain an effort (muscle contractions) for extended periods of time.
Gym training can focus on endurance as well as strength. Workouts that include sets with high repetition ranges (15-25 reps) and light weight can develop muscular endurance.
Yoga is excellent for building endurance, however. Because you’re working with your bodyweight, you’re using “light” weight, but you’re sustaining the muscle contractions for longer periods of time. Think about how long you spend in each Warrior Pose with your knees bent and your leg muscles doing all the work of supporting your body. Or the burn in your shoulders, arms, and back when you’re holding Downward Dog for 60 seconds. All of this leads to excellent gains in muscular endurance!
Is Yoga Better than Gym Training for Cardio Conditioning?
Yoga isn’t focused as much on the cardiovascular conditioning aspect as gym training. Certain forms of Yoga (such as Power Yoga or Ashtanga Yoga) will be more active and dynamic, keeping you moving through the various poses quickly and without much rest. This will develop your cardio conditioning because your body is working hard to pump blood and oxygen to your muscles.
However, if cardio conditioning is your goal, you’ll be better off with a gym workout. Gym workouts give you more flexibility for your cardio training, using training methods like High Intensity Interval Training and Low Intensity Steady State training to push your cardiovascular system. Even the anaerobic nature of weight lifting is excellent for developing better cardio conditioning.
Is Yoga Better than Gym Training for Mental Wellness?
Lifting weights works out your mind as well as your body. It takes focus, discipline, and commitment to keep up with an intense weight training regimen.
However, Yoga combines those benefits with relaxation and meditation, even self-hypnosis through the steady breathing rhythms. The workout is no less demanding on your body and mind, but the relaxing nature of the Yoga sessions will do you so much good by combatting anxiety and stress. If you want to improve your mental wellness, you’re definitely better off doing Yoga!
Is Yoga Better than Gym Training for Mobility and Flexibility?
While stretching is a critical part of any gym workout (necessary to warm up and cool down your muscles), it’s not the central focus of the training. Many bodybuilders and weight trainees suffer from lack of mobility because they’re developing muscles but not focusing on their joint movement.
Yoga, on the other hand, is all about the mobility, the natural freedom of movement and flow between poses. Every position and pose focuses on improving your body’s ability to move easily, working on flexibility and joint mobility exponentially.
Is Yoga Better than Gym Training for Weight Loss?
Both Yoga and gym training will target stored body fat for elimination. Yoga is a slow-burn aerobic exercise that will activate fat and utilize it throughout the hour-long session. With weight training, you burn chiefly through sugar-based energy, but once you’re running out of that energy, your body has to tap into stored fats.
Both gym training and Yoga can encourage amazing fat loss—they just take different approaches to achieving success!
Is Yoga Better than Gym Training Overall?
At the end of the day, both workouts are excellent!
Gym training is excellent for building strength and focusing on your cardiovascular conditioning in training regimens intended to deliver specific results. Yoga targets your mobility, flexibility, muscular endurance, functional strength, and mental wellness, delivering a fat-burning workout that will improve your life in every aspect.
If you want to take your fitness to the next level and see real fat- and weight-loss results, give Yoga Lean a try! It’s a Yoga-based workout program that will improve your mental wellness and your physical health, strengthening your body, enhancing your mind, and delivering quantifiable results that you’ll see reflected in the mirror and on the scale. This program is a new way to train that you’re going to love, and it will improve your life in so many ways.
You’ve got the answer to the question, “Is Yoga better than gym training?” and you’re ready to get started on the program that will best suit your desired end goal of a healthier, happier you!
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