Effect of Regular Yoga Practice on Respiratory Regulation and Exercise Performance.

Author: Beutler E1, Beltrami FG1, Boutellier U1,2, Spengler CM1,2.
1Exercise Physiology Lab, Institute of Human Movement Sciences, ETH Zurich, Winterthurerstrasse 190, 8057, Zurich, Switzerland. 2Zurich Center for Integrative Human Physiology (ZIHP), University of Zurich, Winterthurerstrasse 190, 8057, Zurich, Switzerland.
Conference/Journal: PLoS One.
Date published: 2016 Apr 7
Other: Volume ID: 11 , Issue ID: 4 , Pages: e0153159 , Special Notes: doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0153159. , Word Count: 179

Yoga alters spontaneous respiratory regulation and reduces hypoxic and hypercapnic ventilatory responses. Since a lower ventilatory response is associated with an improved endurance capacity during whole-body exercise, we tested whether yogic subjects (YOGA) show an increased endurance capacity compared to matched non-yogic individuals (CON) with similar physical activity levels. Resting ventilation, the ventilatory response to hypercapnia, passive leg movement and exercise, as well as endurance performance were assessed. YOGA (n = 9), compared to CONTROL (n = 6), had a higher tidal volume at rest (0.7±0.2 vs. 0.5±0.1 l, p = 0.034) and a reduced ventilatory response to hypercapnia (33±15 vs. 47±15 l·min-1, p = 0.048). A YOGA subgroup (n = 6) with maximal performance similar to CONTROL showed a blunted ventilatory response to passive cycling (11±2 vs. 14±2 l·min-1, p = 0.039) and a tendency towards lower exercise ventilation (33±2 vs. 36±3 l·min-1, p = 0.094) while cycling endurance (YOGA: 17.3±3.3; CON: 19.6±8.5 min, p = 0.276) did not differ. Thus, yoga practice was not associated with improved exercise capacity nor with significant changes in exercise ventilation despite a significantly different respiratory regulation at rest and in response to hypercapnia and passive leg movement.

PMID: 27055287 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]