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. Yoga can make you more flexible, but it can also 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: March 2011

Have a question? Ask the experts.

Although we can't reply personally, you may see your question posted to this page in the future. If you're looking for medical advice, a diagnosis, or treatment, consult your doctor or other qualified medical professional. If this is an emergency, contact emergency services in your area.

*Names have been changed to protect user privacy.

Kids Health

Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.

© 1995-2014 The Nemours Foundation/KidsHealth. All rights reserved.