Why Yoga is a Science, Not an Exercise

bhekasana

“Yoga is not a religion. It is a science, science of well-being, science of youthfulness, science of integrating body, mind and soul.”
― Amit Ray

The other day as I went for a morning run I came across a group of people who were finishing what seemed to be a rigorous boot camp training. Many of them were on their hands and knees, gasping for air.  As I drew closer I overheard the leader of the group yell, “Ok guys! Now to finish the workout with a bang, let’s do a yoga workout!”

Due to my innate curiosity I slowed my pace to a jog and watched as these agile men and women of various ages do asana (the physical practice of yoga) but were not flowing with their breath as it is taught by the ancients. In fact, many of them were struggling with balance and proper alignment.

When I first learned about yoga I was drawn only to the physical aspect and did not understand the power behind using one’s breath to safely move through each posture. I was also not aware that each movement and giving action in yoga is a form of prayer. Because it seemed that these highly-motivated people were attempting somewhat advanced poses I wondered if there was a benefit to asana being incorporated into a hard-core workout.

As I arrived home I immediately contacted my guru – a Swami in Nepal who has been a wonderful source of guidance in my yoga journey. He reminded me that yoga itself is a science, not an exercise, and I need not worry about what others do, but be mindful of my own thoughts about them.

“Two things prevent us from happiness; living in the past and observing others.”

I thanked my guru for his selfless teaching once again, for he helped me understand the power of minding my own business – in the most literal way possible.

Later on that day I came across this interview with Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev, a yogi, mystic and best-selling author. He explains in detail the vast difference between a yoga practice and a fitness practice. His views are clear, yet witty and full of tenacity.

Nowadays I say my prayers, practice asana and meditation in the morning and working out at night. But the truth is always evidenc. There always needs to be harmony within, for happiness always follows.

Are you a yogi/yogini who works out as well? What are your thoughts on yoga being a workout? I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Namaste. 🙂

Michelle

About Michelle Cruz Rosado

Michelle Cruz Rosado is a professional speaker and bestselling co-author of "Pursuing Your Destiny: How to Overcome Adversity and Achieve Your Dreams." Follow Michelle for inspiring messages and quotes.