Posted by on 4/29/2020 to Let's Talk Yoga!
What Are Some Of The Best Times To Do Yoga?
Are you someone who prefers to work out in the morning? How about the afternoon? Evening time? Right before bed?
The fact is, everyone who has exercised for any extensive amount of time has probably done all of the above at one time or another in there lives. Oftentimes it's about when you can fit a 30-minute, or hour routine into your hectic day, and when your feel the most energized.
Can you believe there has actually been several research studies surrounding the "best" time of the day to exercise?
That's right! There is research to suggest different benefits dependent upon what time of the day you workout.
Keep in mind there are all sorts of varieties of not just exercise routines, but yoga. Some are more gentle forms while others make you sweat, and get that heart pumping. So it's important to keep this in mind. What we'd like to do is just provide some information as if you were participating in a moderate intensity yoga routine.
The Best Time To Do Yoga?
Usually either a morning or evening routine works better for most people, as most individuals schedule does not allow for an afternoon workout due to work, kids, and how many of our daily lives are structured.
According to us, here at RN to Zen, the best time to do yoga is obviously what works best for you and your own schedule, however specific times may lend itself to certain advantages. Your age and current fitness level may also determine when and what time you like to exercise. Even Sleep Foundation discusses research, suggesting that the optimal time to exercise depends on many factors, including; chronotype, your age, and underlying health conditions.
Yoga offers many benefits and it is only in the long run of a daily routine that one can find its effect. You will need to decide which path (style) suits you best, fits your lifestyle, and works with your daily schedule most cohesively, for longevity.
Related Article: Easy to Complete Yoga Sequences for Beginners!
Like beforementioned, it's important be consistent, be active in the yoga practice at least 3 – 4 times a week, especially if you are not pursuing any other form of exercise, as this is a good starting point.
Yoga is all about helping to heal both the body and mind, it should not be a stressful time, however a way to unwind or push yourself in a way that helps you heal.
A Case For Morning Yoga
Morning sessions can be better for some, as it gets you a fresh start to the day, blood flowing, increases energy levels and hormone production. On top of this, morning exercise may help "entrain circadian rhythms", leading to an easier time falling to sleep early, says Sleep Foundation.
Related Article: Yoga for Better Sleep: Learn Why Bedtime Yoga, Works!
Let's talk doing yoga or working out in the morning more in depth. Working out in the morning get's you up and going, making you feel better because of all those happy endorphins which are released. For us personally, working out in the morning makes us feel as though we have gotten a large "to do" off our list, almost before our day has even begun. It almost gives you a sense of accomplishment.
How many of you are sore, stiff or tight in the morning?
If this is the case, exploring a morning yoga routine may also be beneficial to optimize your mobility for the day, helping to increase strength and flexibility. Certain poses can help to relieve pain or stiffness as well, allowing for decompression of your spine or opening up those tight hips.
Another reason to add yoga to your morning routine is that it just may curb your appetite. A study done out of BYU, suggests 45 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise in the morning, reduces a persons motivation for food.
Related Article: Yoga for Lower Back Pain
Another study suggests that working out in the morning may be beneficial to "enhance nocturnal blood pressure changes and quality of sleep". Morning exercise has also shown to improve muscle strength, compared to other times of the day in one study, but it's clear more research is needed to prove this conclusion. A study from the University of Copenhagen were able to produce results in an animal study, concluded that exercise in the morning results in an increased metabolic response in skeletal muscle.
So can we better burn (metabolize) things like sugars and fats in the morning? Maybe, according to this research.
On this same, note yoga in the morning is said to be beneficial due to the fact it is consistent with having an empty stomach and digestive system. Think about doing all of those yoga postures, poses and stretching while having a full stomach, doesn't sound to comfortable, right?
Morning Yoga Stretch In 10 Minutes
As per the Ashtanga system, which emphasizes keeping with a specific routine and time in which asanas are done, typically encourages morning routines. Keeping with these consistencies is said to have a better effect on the body and mind, as with Ashtanga style yoga, although can have a vigorous workout routine to it, is very focused on the spirit and riding the body of toxins through sweat.
A Case For Evening Yoga
With all of that said about yoga in the morning, what about the benefits or pitfalls of yoga in the evening? Evening yoga routines can also be beneficial, as some individuals are just not wired to get up early and grind, many of us need a good solid morning breakfast consumption or have to be to work early and our schedule just does not permit these early morning routines.
We think the important point when discussing evening yoga, is how late are you exercising? According to John Hopkins Medicine, it takes about 1-2 hours for endorphin levels to go down after a workout.
This is important because these brain chemicals can keep some people awake. So working out, showering, and then going right to bed without a little wind-down period, may not be ideal for some.
Now we discussed the advantage of morning yoga being that it gets your muscles warmed up, however you also have to get past that initial stage of being stiff and rigid. With an evening routine, your muscles, and joints are already warmed up, ready to go. This obviously depends on the type of work you do regularly, but it's hard for many people to perform yoga maneuvers in the morning because there muscles are simply not warmed up.
There has also been evidence to suggest strength and endurance is better in the evening versus in the morning. An article published in 2013 also produces evidence that one may be able to workout "markedly" longer in the evening versus in the morning.
An Evening Stretch & Relax Session
Evening yoga routines offer a time that you can de-stress and decrease the tension that may have built-up throughout your day, and like morning yoga routines, yoga in the evening accompanied with meditation can help us practice mindfulness. Meaning that we can focus our energy and steer aware from some bad habits, like food indulging and late night eating. Many times these are comfort cravings, so if we can focus our mind on something else, these cravings may subside.
Remember, this is a habit that you form, and it's not so much about the best time to do yoga rather than deciding to do it regardless of what is happening in your life. If you decide to do it regularly, you will find the balance and the best time that works with your busy schedule, whether that be morning, noon or night, you can't go wrong for placing yoga in your life.
We appreciate your time with us today and we hope that you to can find time to better yourself and health! Please comment and offer any advice you may have to help people get started in there yoga journey.
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