Yoga has been accepted as a way of life by so many people irrespective of religion and country. There is world wide promotion for the Yoga and June 21 is going to be celebrate as International Yoga day. Yoga go hand in hand with body and mind, as mental health and body health are related. I want to know how beneficial is Yoga to body compared to other exercises like jogging, gym,etc ?
Evidence for the benefits of yoga is vast and easily accessible online. It is great to see question like this which focus on the comparison of yoga to other exercises.
There is quite limited amount of studies which investigate the benefits of yoga over another type of exercise.
When kids were examined yoga did not show benefits over traditional exercises (1). In my opinion this is due to the fact that children aged between 8 and 13 years are not sensible to the great effects of yoga. Hardly any kids that age experience stress or mental problems which could be relieved by mental exercises.
In another study slightly older participants were examined (2). When compared to stretching the patients having participated to a yoga intervention showed greater effects in executive functions and also in flexibility.
In another study setting women with breast cancer were investigated (3). Again compared to stretching, yoga was superior with regard to quality of life and fitness.
As so, I think there is good evidence favouring yoga at least over stretching. Unfortunately there is scarcely studies investigating the benefits of yoga over, say jogging or gym exercises.