20 differences between Yoga and Aerobics:

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By Ali Hale Tilley ©  

  1. Yoga allows time for self-focus and meditation (… aerobics is all about action and exertion)
  2. Yoga Studios often have a tranquil ambience and are free of distractions (… aerobics studios play dance music at between 120 and 135 BPM and are often part of noisy Gyms)
  3. Yoga gives you 1:1 time to realign your body and mind (… aerobics teachers bark instructions through a head mic and tell you to feel the burn!)
  4. Yoga involves gentle stretching (… aerobic involves ballistic exercise)
  5. Yoga incorporates different breath techniques (… aerobics only has one breath technique i.e. panting)
  6. Yoga works on inner strength (…aerobics focuses on cardio-vascular and core strength)
  7. Yoga gives you time to stop and let it all go (…aerobics makes you keep on going even when your body tells you to stop)
  8. Yoga promotes a feeling of mindfulness (… aerobics is a fitness intensive)
  9. Yoga has a bicultural relationship with hauora – Te Whare Tapa Wha – the Māori philosophy of health and well-being (aerobics only covers physical health i.e. Te Taha Tinana
  10. Yoga promotes feeling centred and grounded (…aerobics promotes getting you up off the ground in Fitness Centres)
  11. Yoga is a healing art ( … aerobics is a high energy fitness workout)
  12. Yoga is a way of life ( … aerobics is a type of group fitness)
  13. Yoga is more gentle than dance and ballet ( … aerobics expends a similar energy output to dance and ballet)
  14. Yoga has teaching lineages – like T Krishnamacharya (Yoga has teaching trends like Taibo)
  15. Yoga’s mantra is ‘namaste’ (aerobic’s mantra is “no pain no gain”)
  16. Yoga includes a spiritual practice (… aerobics includes high impact practice)
  17. Yoga can help rehabilitate injuries (… aerobics has a high risk of causing injuries)
  18. Yoga is a holistic health practice ( … aerobics is not holistic, but specific)
  19. Yoga balances mind-body-breath (… aerobics is about getting up a sweat)
  20. Yoga has its cultural roots in India (… aerobics has its cultural roots in America)

I have presented these 20 differences between Yoga and Aerobics because tomorrow I will start working on my ACC Application for Review, to appeal against Yoga being classified by ACC as medium to high risk ‘Sports and Recreation Instruction’ (like aerobics).

Although I will be preparing this application single-handed, other yoga teachers and students have had their say about what they think Yoga is via my online petition, as well as in open forums during class.

Everyone who does yoga agrees that ‘yoga is not a sport!’

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