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Yoga & Fitness: Bringing Different Worlds Together
Yoga & Fitness: Bringing Different Worlds Together

Yoga in itself is a very unique discipline and contrasts what fitness and exercise represent. It is called a discipline simply because it is one; a very complex discipline that has existed on earth for centuries at least. Yoga is a sacred journey. It is a spiritual practice, not solely focused on health and physicality. Today, it is a positive part of the lives of a growing number of people worldwide, as it continues to gain in popularity.

Then, there’s fitness, which is growing in popularity as well. For many, the fitness lifestyle is sought-after and is more than just a hobby or practice. Most people want to look and feel fit. For some, going to the gym has even become a social event, with a sense of community. These are just a few reasons the number of gyms and fitness centers in the world have increased tenfold in a very short period of time. Although different from yoga, the fitness industry is a lucrative industry that is also doing good for people’s well-being.

Bringing Yoga and Fitness together:

The benefits of combining yoga and different forms of exercise can be plentiful. If we are to personify these two practices, hypothetically, one could say that fitness is a machine and yoga is the fuel. A machine can’t run without fuel and fuel has no purpose if there isn’t a machine. Fitness forms that focus more on strength and cardiovascular exercise, complement the deep stretching of yoga very well and are healthy for the human body.

Yoga as both a spiritual and fitness practice is doing very well for both people and businesses alike. While yoga is being commercialized in some similar ways to the rest of the fitness industry, it doesn’t have to lose its true essence and uniqueness. The fitness industry can be seen as giving yoga a bigger platform to shine brighter and change more lives.

Yoga benefits include:

  • Flexibility
  • Brain exercise
  • Calming tense nerves
  • Comfortable and fluid movement
  • Ability to concentrate on breathing

*These are just 5 of many, many, more benefits.

Fitness can complement yoga with alternate benefits such as:

  • Building lean muscle
  • Burning unhealthy fat cells
  • Strengthening bones
  • Condition and toning muscles
  • Increasing secretion of hormones

And lots more.

Infusing Yoga with Fitness: How?

Yoga and various fitness practices are beginning to merge together more and more frequently into different disciplines. Many people have recognized the complementary benefits and are experimenting with bringing them together.

Yoga and Cardio

Combining yoga and cardio is a very effective way to multiply physical benefits of each practice. Cardio exercises burn fats and calories at a faster rate. Yoga too can tone the body and help with burning fats. Cardio exercises are usually more fast-paced than relaxing forms of yoga. So what are some benefits if the two are combined together?

  • Better body control
  • Create stronger balance in body movements
  • Improve stamina
  • Improve breathing capacity
  • Increases flexibility

Yoga is also a smart addition to a regular warm up before a cardio session. It is also the perfect post-workout ritual to loosen up muscles and help them recover faster and healthier. Yoga can help make movements more fluid, especially for runners, swimmers, and cyclists. It can also help improve performance in these practices because of a deeper awareness of breath.

Yoga and Calisthenics

Calisthenics is a perfect option for those who dislike going to a gym or using heavy equipment while working out. Calisthenics involves only bodyweight exercises, something which yoga also incorporates. In yoga, one usually does not use weights or machines, but a combination of different body movements instead. Doing bodyweight workouts with the ease of a relaxed mind from yoga, can make the fusion wonderful and easy for beginners to pick up.

Here’s a short list of exercises that can be done in yoga and fitness fusion styles:

  • Squats
  • Lunges
  • Crunches
  • Pull-ups
  • Balance increasing exercises

There are many different combinations that can be used to make the most of these movements, and  since it is a relatively new field of fitness, people have taken the liberty to experiment with combinations and improvise!

How does one take it up?

It is worth trying a fitness yoga class, if you never have! Merging yoga with fitness is not everyone’s cup of tea, but it certainly has unique advantages. This trend will likely stick around for a long time! If you’re curious and want to try a class, explore what is offered near you. Most yoga, fitness studios, and gyms offer some sort of fusion class, so go in and ask or check their schedules! Play around with trying different styles and fusions and see if there’s anything you love. There are also many classes online to choose from. Videos at home can give you a clear visual for optimal alignment. They also allow you to try something new as a total beginner in the comfort of your own home! Remember to have fun! If you are looking for a great yoga mat to work on at home, you might benefit from these reviews.

 

By Jenna Kendrick

“Put in the effort and fitness will follow” is the mantra Jenna Kendrick follows. She is super enthusiastic to guide newbies to fitness to follow an optimal routine they can stick to and reap benefits. She likes to keep fit and as a bonus writes about it a lot too!

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