Yoga is often mistaken as another kind of exercise. It is not. Yoga and other Exercises work in an entirely different way. Human body is made of smaller molecules or cells which routinely die and replaced by new ones. By heavy exercise this process is hastened.
Weaker cells are forced to be replaced by new and stronger cells. Add extra nourishment and cells multiply with growth in its multitude.
It can not be denied that regular movement of all limbs of body is inevitable. Any indolent can vouch for stiffness and pain in one part of body or joint or the other as a routine which we attribute to rising age but is in fact due to rising stiffness.
Yoga works other way around. First it involves movement of limbs in subtle ways involving those muscles which often remain dormant. It further requires gentle touch in all movements to ensure no snap injury.
Second part of Yoga is far more subtle. It involves breathing, as a stand alone technique or in combination of movement of limbs but at the time of pause in particular posture. Every cell in the body is dependent on oxygen. The breathing ensure optimum supply of oxygen to every cell and thereby enhancing the life of weaker cells as well. The last is the radical difference between Yoga and Exercise. Above all relaxation is the core of Yoga.
Abuse of Yoga & exercise
Like many other things, we have invented ways to abuse Yoga & Exercise as well. We have a fixed and inflexible routine of stiffness. We do not even consider stepping away from it to find less burdensome way of living. Rather the more busy we are, it is felt to be better. Body and mind withers. Now we resort to Yoga as a treatment for withering body and mind. We make no change in routine and Yoga comes with great promise. As it becomes part of routine it starts to give dimnishing returns.
Yoga is a way of life which revolves around relaxation and not for pursuing the targets. This is the abuse not only of Yoga but also of human body. This body loves routines or habits and easily become dependant on habits. Mind hates routine but that is a different matter. So body, gradually absorbs the Yoga as well and process of stiffening starts.
My point is work less, move more and do exercise or yoga occasionally but never together. May be on weekend when body is rested. Keep changing the routine. Otherwise more and longer exercises would be required which is a vicious and endless cycle. We have to let go of it often. Like everything.
Note: The above analysis is particularly for aspiring Clooney’s or Stone’s or Rekha’s. Adolescents can experiment as they do and learn for themselves.