Yoga could be as good for your health as aerobics or brisk walking, a new study suggests. The study, published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology, looked at how the mind-body practice of yoga could be used by cardiac patients who were unable to take part in more physically challenging forms of exercise. It found that in terms of preventing heart disease: “Yoga may provide the same benefits in risk factor reduction as traditional physical activity such as cycling or brisk walking.
“In addition to CVD risk factor improvements, other benefits may result from practicing yoga. For example, yoga may provide health-related quality of life improvements such as reductions in stress and anxiety and better coping mechanisms distinct from other forms of exercise. ”
I must say, this is welcome news for those of us not inclined to go pounding the streets in the pouring rain on a daily basis or head off to the gym for a session of sweating in Lycra.
This study is very welcome and I am sure there are many people out there who could benefit from this information.
There must be plenty of people out there sitting in armchairs because they are daunted by the prospect of joining an aerobics class – but who would be easily persuaded to try this more accessible form of exercise and relaxation in their own home.
The report concludes: “We believe that these findings have important implications for the acceptance of yoga as an effective therapeutic intervention. Given the growing popularity of yoga in the US and around the world, there is a need for larger randomised controlled studies that meet explicit, high quality methodological standards to ascertain the effects of yoga.”
Bring on the yoga, I say!