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Is Yoga Equivalent to Running?

Does yoga burn more calories than actually going to the gym and running on the treadmill?
- Brianna*

Even a vigorous yoga workout won't burn as many calories as the same time spent on the treadmill. That said, yoga is a great addition to any exercise routine, and the benefits go beyond the time you spend on the mat. Besides making you more flexible, yoga also can build strong muscles, and muscles burn more calories than fat. So, even when you're studying, your yoga muscles keep on burning calories.

Start out by incorporating easy-to-do beginner yoga stretches before and after your workouts or consider joining a yoga class. Don't stop running, though. The best fitness programs include strength training, flexibility, and aerobic exercise. And by combining running with yoga, you get all of those.

Reviewed by: Mary L. Gavin, MD
Date reviewed: September 2014

*Names have been changed to protect user privacy.