Stop Saying Yoga Isn’t Exercise

Professional athletes of all stripes say that incorporating yoga into their training is a great way to stay limber, flexible and build strength in muscles that might otherwise go ignored.

But a new meta-analysis published Monday in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology suggests that practicing breathing-based (or asana) yoga could also be a way to protect cardiovascular health. That puts yoga, an ancient spiritual practice that incorporates mind and body, in a class of activities that include walking and biking as a way to avoid weight gain, high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels.

The meta-analysis authors are excited about the finding because yoga is a relatively accessible exercise to ease into for the elderly, those with joint or muscle pain or those with weak hearts.

“Yoga has the potential to be a cost-effective treatment and prevention strategy given its low cost, lack of expensive equipment or technology, potential greater adherence and health-related quality of life improvements, and possible accessibility to larger segments of the population,” they wrote in a press release about the study.

The authors analyzed 32 randomized, controlled trials (the gold standard of experimentation because they have control groups) and found —> Read More Here


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