If you are looking solely to build muscle, then weight training is definitely an extremely effective route. The controlled movements, along with the progressively growing resistance is the recipe for the muscles to grow. They must be challenged so they have a breaking down and rebuilding in the tissues continuously.
However Nicholas DiNubile, M.D. says, ‘Yoga can be just as effective as weights when it comes to building a stronger, more impressive physique.’ Yoga offers a balanced approach. It builds muscle by way of mindful movement, utilizing focus and breath. The concentration as well is not only on moving into a pose, or asana. Each movement is your own, meaning the real benefit is building a relationship with your body that listens to what it can and cannot do. And each movement has three steps. The first is initiating the pose. The second is staying in the pose engaging all the body, and the third is moving out of the pose with the same focus it took to get there.
Without realizing it muscles of the entire body participate in your poses.
Yoga combines a stretching as you contract which is not a part of traditional weight training. In fact, weight training emphasizes the opposite where the muscle gets smaller, not longer, as it contracts. This encourages the fibers to compact, an abdomen with a six pack is a good example of this contraction.
The mindful movement of yoga creates more of a lean physique overall, and a sensitivity to holding yourself through your day with good posture through its focus on alignment of the body. This will also strengthen small ancillary muscles. Many doctors and certified physical trainers will also note that variety is the key to great health. Yoga offers continual variety in its every class, but why not combine yoga with other forms of cardio and weights? Create your workout like you might paint a picture, with lots of color and texture.