Yoga High

Last updated: December 21, 2023

What Does Yoga High Mean?

A yoga high is that blissful, euphoric feeling a yogi experiences after a yoga practice. Just like the better-known runner’s high, the physical practice of yoga releases chemicals in the brain that produce the feelings of euphoria. But a yoga high comes from more than just a physical practice triggering a chemical reaction – yoga also strengthens the mind-body connection, builds self-confidence and creates a sense of happiness and joy.

Yoga is fulfilling on a physical, spiritual, emotional, relational and intellectual level. By positively addressing all of these keys to a happy existence, yoga creates a high that may differ from the one that springs from other, purely physical activities.


Yogapedia Explains Yoga High

Although researchers acknowledge the existence of a feel-good high after physical activity, they have only theories to explain how it works. The common theory for decades gave credit to endorphins: chemicals in the body that respond to physical stress by reducing pain and anxiety, sort of like an opiate. More recent research, though, focuses on endocannabinoids, another kind of chemical that the body releases in response to physical activity.

While many factors may contribute to a yoga high, some styles of yoga that focus on a more intense physical practice tend to produce a high like that experienced by runners. Bikram and other forms of hot yoga offer a cardiovascular workout that is likely to trigger a pain- and anxiety-reducing response by the body.

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