The yoga community tends to be a tad uninformed about human movement & strength training physiology, and when established yoga entities like Yoga Journal publish misinformed articles like this one, this doesn’t help matters much!
This article features a yoga sequence that is claimed to be “better than most weightlifting programs” for building muscle & strength.
And unfortunately, that claim simply isn’t true and only serves to confuse people.
Weightlifting is actually much better than this yoga sequence for strengthening because unlike the yoga sequence, weightlifting utilizes close to maximum force production & progressive overload, which are the ingredients you need for true strengthening.
And due to time constraints on this mini-post, I won’t go into how “strength” and “building muscle” (i.e. hypertrophy 🤓) are not actually the same thing, even though the YJ article lumps them together as though they’re interchangeable.
To be clear, the YJ sequence definitely offers many benefits 👍🏽, but it is not significantly strengthening or muscle-building.
Now I know that it’s very common for people to use the term “strengthening” loosely - I do this myself at times too!
But my main issue with this article is the way it misleads people into thinking that yoga is *better* than weightlifting for strength, which promotes the long-outdated idea that yoga is the only practice we need to be healthy.
Yoga has many amazing benefits, and we can even make it *strengthening* if we make some conscious additions & changes to it. But the sequence as featured in the article does not accomplish this, nor is it better in any way than weightlifting for strength.
Let’s be clear with our terms so that people who really DO want to strengthen won’t be misled into thinking that sequences like this will do the trick!