Yoga Exercises

(August 18, 2008)

Differentiate between asanas and exercises?


Yoga asana are postures that are carried out in a systematic manner so that there is development of equilibrium of the mind, body and the soul. Asana deals with the mental, spiritual and physical aspects of the body so that the person is healthy not only from outside but also within. Yoga asana involves slow steady movements that will not make you exhausted. Instead the person feels refreshed and satisfied. The asana are classified into three categories:

Meditative asana- These asana are carried out for meditation.

Asana for mental tranquility: These asana help in achieving peace and stability of the mind.

Asana for physical power: These asana help in enhancing body strength and physical power.

Asana help in improving the strength, vitality, flexibility and longevity of the body. It helps in managing various disorders. By regular practice of the asana, our breathing process can be brought under control. It can influence the functioning of the endocrine glands, kidney and the colon. Blood circulation is improved with the blood supply being provided to the brain. This can improve the memory, well being, alertness and even the attitude of an individual. Thus the various organs of the body are stimulated and the functions of these organs are improved with asana.

Physical exercise is the activity of the body that deals with the physical fitness and total physical development of the body. It is necessary for the development of the muscles, improving the physical skills, enhancing the immune system, managing the body disorders like cardiovascular disease, diabetes and reducing the weight in obese individuals and managing the ideal body weight. There are three categories of exercise which are as follows:

Flexibility exercise like stretching exercise which can improve the tone of the muscles.

Aerobic exercise like cycling, running, walking that can improve the endurance of the cardiovascular system

Anaerobic exercise like weight training, sprinting that can improve short term muscle strength.

Thus regular exercise involves burning of calories and fat, maintaining an ideal weight, improving the bone densities and reducing the surgical risks. It is essential for cognitive development and can improve the efficiency of the cardiovascular system

Yoga asana are involved in improving the health of the body internally as well as externally. Physical exercise does not involve in exercising the internal organs of the body. Energy expenditure occurs while performing physical exercise. In yoga, energy is not expended much while performing the asana. Hence the person does not feel tired.

Submitted by A V on August 18, 2008 at 12:55

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