The best thing to do is wear a heart rate monitor a few times to help you gage where you are at.
Yes, yoga strengthens the cardio-vascular system, but yoga also lowers your heart rate. Depending on the level you are at, the length you hold your poses, and the way you use your breath, the amount of calories you burn will vary.
I know I burn up to 500 calories doing Power Yoga, so that's a good example of how to make it a good cardio workout.
I always include yoga in my Fitness under cardio, because if nothing else, this is time you are spending moving around and even if you only burn 100 or 150 calories in an an hour, it's all contributing to the same thing - you being healthy!
oddly enough I was just reading an article about this in a magazine at the gym today!
I tried looking up the article so that you could all read it but I couldn't find it- it was in the December 2008 issue of Women's Health.
Anyways, it said that if you are doing Hatha yoga you are not getting cardiovascular exercise and that you only burn about 100 calories (for either an hour or 90 minutes, i cant remember). It did say though that if you are doing Vinyasa yoga or another kind wose name I can't remember that you can get into the cardiovascular zone and you burn way more calories! (upwards of 200)
Just a thought on your yoga teacher...what he/she is saying is true. But really, the goal of cardiovascular fitness is to increase the heart's ability to supply blood to the muscles, thereby allowing the heart to work less. A personal trainer will sometimes assess VO2 Max, which is essentially the level of this ability. The more fit the person, the more cardio he/she is able to perform at a lower HR than a less conditioned person. Don't know if I'm making any sense. Guess just agreeing that the practiced yogi may control breath in the same way that the conditioned cardio athlete is able to perform at a lower HR than the deconditioned individual. So perhaps yoga and cardio are not different?? Just a thought...
Believe me, I feel my heart THUMPING when I do Ashtanga and Vinyasa Flow. However the argument that has been presented to me by one of my yoga teachers (who is by the way both a Certified PT & 500 hr RYT) which makes some sense is that the long term goal of the practice is to control and steady the breathing as well as to lower the actual heart rate which is contrary to the aims of cardiovascular exercise. So my teacher tells me while my heart may be thumping away now, I should be able to calm and slow it down with continued practice. In support of this, I have met some very experienced yogis who claim that they no longer sweat in flow classes.
I don't know...
Not sure who's right on the subject but it certainly seems up to debate.
Yoga is DEFINITELY cardio if you incorporate breath into your practice. I was very stubborn at first, refusing to believe that yoga could compare to, say, jogging. But an instructor (former pro runner)explained to me how we exercise our lungs in a deeper way in yoga as opposed to the quick, panting breaths we take when we jog. I jog and do yoga. After a 75-90 minute hot yoga class, I have had an incredible cardio workout!!
I did Vinyasa this morning in a heated room. I wore my heart rate monitor, and at the end of a 60 minute class I had burned 500 calories. My heart rate stayed at about 55-60% of my target heart rate for the whole class.
So yeah, I think yoga counts as cardio.
If it's to be, it's up to me. -- "Tough Love" Bob Kennedy, Publisher, Oxygen Magazine
Courage, sacrifice, determination, commitment, toughness, heart, talent, guts. That's what little girls are made of, the hell with sugar and spice. --Unknown
Tears will get you sympathy, sweat will get you change. --Jesse Jackson
Hi, Cardio exercise keeps your heart rate up during your workout -- if you do a "flow" yoga practice, moving fairly quickly from pose to pose, you can make it work as a cardio workout. If you have a heart monitor, you could wear it during your practice to check how vigorously you are working... Or you could just stop every 10 minutes or so and take your pulse. Here's a page that explains what cardio means and how to calculate target heart rate (there are lots of others!) pilates.about.com/od/pilatesforevery bo dy/a/Cardio_2.htm
Depends on what type of yoga you practice. Ashtanga, power yoga, Bikram, and vinyasa styles are generally vigorous enough to be considered cardio, though all yoga is good for the cardiovascular system.
You must be the change you wish to see in the world. -Ghandi
SparkPeople, SparkCoach, SparkPages, SparkPoints, SparkDiet, SparkAmerica, SparkRecipes, DailySpark, and other marks are trademarks of SparkPeople, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
SPARKPEOPLE is a registered trademark of SparkPeople, Inc. in the United States, European Union, Canada, and Australia. All rights reserved.