Yoga vs. the Traditional Gym Workout: A Debate with a False Premise ← Back to Blog


Traditional gym workout or yoga? This is a debate many people are having throughout the country. Conventional (some might consider old fashioned) wisdom would suggest incorporating a variety of different workouts to work different muscles and keep the body guessing. WNDU recently reported on a study pitting the two workouts against each other in an article titled “Gym workout vs. yoga: Researchers test to see which is more beneficial.”

Maureen McFadden of WNDU writes, “Yoga, stretching, balance and core strength. Or the gym, pounding the treadmill, pushing up the heart rate. Which one gets you the biggest bang for your health buck? A clinical study tried to find out. Daniel Hughes, PhD, Assistant Professor and Clinical Exercise Physiologist at UT Health Science Center in San Antonio, Texas led the study. Some people did yoga, others did gym workouts and a third group was just asked to be active in some way consistently. Professor Hughes explained, ‘What we asked all three groups to do was to do an hour at a time, and three hours per week.’ Going in, Professor Hughes thought his gym workout would be the winner. But Nydia Tijerina-Darby, PT, DPT, MS, Yoga Therapist, thought her yoga program would win. ‘And I would have been right in there putting major bucks on the yoga,’ she said. The result surprised everyone. ‘All three arms were just as effective in terms of body fat, fitness and physical function,’ Professor Hughes explained. Michelle Hart who participated in the study was surprised by the results. She commented, ‘I think I was expecting that one would be stronger than the other, and probably thinking that yoga would be the end all be all.’ But Cindy Schmelz, who hit the gym during the study, wasn’t so surprised. ‘I think that as long as you have an activity that you’re going to stay regular with, it’s probably beneficial,’ Schmelz said.”

As the study shows, the debate between traditional gym workouts and yoga is built off of a false premise. Only your body knows how much of any particular exercise you need.

If you’re looking to further your yoga practice, You And The Mat is the studio for you. Our classes are accessible to the novice and a challenge for the seasoned practitioner. We will guide you through a practice tailored to provide you with the experience you are looking for.

Our instructors are hand picked for their extensive experience and their ability to make connections and communicate effectively with their students. They are all trained to break down a pose, offer modifications if needed, or suggest variations for students looking to deepen their practice.

In addition to yoga classes, we also offer a variety of services, including workshops, special events, teacher trainings, and more.

Whatever problem you have, we have the yoga solution at You And The Mat!