Yoga Vs Exercise – Which One Is Better?

We all know that, in order to keep our bodies in good condition, we need to remain fit and exercise our bodies.

The question is – which method of “exercise” is actually better when it comes to your regular exercise like jogging, or yoga?

Yoga Vs Exercise - Which One Is Better

In order to answer this question accurately, it is first important to know what actually goes in these two categories.

Yoga is a mind and body practice that focuses on breathing exercises and physical postures.

However, “exercise” is a very broad term that could encompass a variety of things, including going to the gym, jogging, swimming, and a whole host of other activities.

In this case, we will predominantly be using the example of going to the gym, just to keep things simple.

So, which one is actually better for you? Is there a best, or does the answer depend on a variety of factors? Let’s jump into it in the sections below.

The Benefits Of Yoga

Yoga Vs Exercise

There are a number of benefits of yoga and plenty of reasons why people love this form of exercise so much.

One of the primary things to mention about yoga is that it can be done anywhere, and no equipment is needed.

While a few things like yoga mats may be helpful, there are ways to work around this easily.

Not only that, but yoga is suitable for all age ranges, and also those with health problems like heart (see also: Is Coffee Good For Your Heart? – Heart Health Explained)and blood pressure issues.

This means that it is overall more accessible than going to the gym will be for many people.

Here are some of the major benefits of yoga that draw people to it:

  • It helps mentally and is a great way to get in touch with your body
  • Blood circulation is improved
  • Nutrient supply around the body is improved
  • Can help to relieve constipation by aiding bowel movement
  • Yoga can be done anywhere so long as you have the space to stretch out
  • Strengthens muscles
  • Fantastic for increasing flexibility
  • Stretched your muscles and helps to relieve tension
  • Decreases stress both mentally and physically
  • Helps to burn calories to keep you fit
  • No props are needed to enjoy yoga
  • Suitable for all age ranges and those with health conditions
  • It can be enjoyed for free, and there are online yoga tutorials and classes to take

Disadvantages Of Yoga


Like anything, there are also disadvantages to consider. These negative points could be the deciding factor in whether or not you choose to pursue yoga as a form of exercise.

So, consider these before you start:

  • Yoga might be boring for some people as it is not a high-energy workout
  • Many people may not feel like they did much after a yoga session
  • Learning the yoga poses can be a real challenge
  • Yoga can be painful if you have very low flexibility (but this will gradually improve!)
  • Not a good option for building muscle or bulking up

The Benefits Of Exercising At The Gym

Yoga Vs Exercise - Which One IsBetter

Going to the gym also has its benefits, and the exact benefits will depend on your routine and what you choose to focus on.

However as this is one of the most popular ways to get in your daily activities, it is no surprise that there are a number of things that draw people to exercise at the gym.

Here are a few of the most popular reasons why exercising at the gym is a favourite:

  • Decreases stress both mentally and physically
  • Can help to relieve constipation by aiding bowel movement
  • Blood circulation is improved
  • Helps to burn calories to keep you fit
  • Can increase muscle mass and healthy weight gain
  • Can help with mental health (like all forms of exercise)
  • Going to the gym can improve flexibility
  • Potentially more interesting for those who prefer high-energy workouts

Disadvantages Of Exercising At The Gym

Yoga VsExercise - Which One IsBetter

The gym also has its disadvantages. We will discuss these below so that you can make an informed decision about whether you would like to go to the gym or not.

Here are the possible disadvantages of going to the gym to exercise:

  • The gym can be very expensive due to memberships and hiring a personal trainer if needed
  • Gyms can be a lot more intimidating, especially for those who are new to the space
  • Professional gym equipment is needed to work out properly
  • There is a greater chance of injury due to the use of machines and strenuous activities
  • Fatigue is common after a gym session

So, Which One is Better?

Unfortunately, there is no “one size fits all” answer to this question! The answer you reach will depend on you as a person, your goals, and your abilities.

If you are someone who would like to build muscle and bulk up, then going to the gym is going to be the better option for you.

Anyone who likes to have a variety of exercises (e.g. lifting weights, going on the treadmill, etc) will probably do better in a gym.

Similarly, if you have very high energy levels and a busy mind, the gym route is likely going to work much better for you so that you can keep busy and really exert all that energy.

On the other hand, if you are a calmer person, and are not a fan of high-energy workouts, trying out yoga could be ideal for you.

In the same sense, yoga is fantastic if you would like to focus on strengthening your muscles in a way that does not put too much unnecessary strain on your body.

Yoga can be enjoyed by anyone, from children to elders, and even those with health conditions that might otherwise prevent or limit them at a gym – like high blood pressure and cardiac issues.

Ultimately, you need to know what you would like to get out of your exercise form and go from there. As we mentioned in the pros and cons, the cost of these two different exercise options is also something to consider.

You could do yoga for free and from the comfort of your own home since there are YouTube tutorials and online classes you can join.

However, for the gym, you either need at-home gym equipment, or you need to head out to your local gym.

Either way, this can be a much more expensive endeavour, and you are more likely to experience injuries from the equipment!

Even so, these two forms of exercise have completely different goals, and you can enjoy them both safely.

Final Thoughts

There is no better or worse when it comes to doing yoga or going to the gym. These two forms of exercise suit different people as they result in different outcomes!

Exercising at the gym is fantastic for building muscle and getting in a variety of exercises, while yoga is great for strengthening muscle and flexibility.

The option you go with must be chosen based on your personal needs and desires, as well as physical and financial constraints.

Anyone with cardiac or blood pressure issues may prefer yoga since it is safer, but those who want to bulk up will inevitably prefer the gym.

Clare McAfee
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