YAWNING during a workout

Yawning in a Fight Fit class! Really? Well, one thing we can be confident of, is that it’s not through boredom! So why does it happen sometimes?

You may have heard that we yawn because our brain is getting a bit oxygen-starved and it’s a sign of low oxygen levels in the blood.

yawning and fitnessYet, research has shown that people do not yawn less after being exposed to high oxygen levels, and do not yawn more after being exposed to high levels of carbon dioxide.

There’s also another theory claiming yawning is a response to good old fashioned boredom, although this doesn’t really make sense when we’re in the middle of “Stick your Middle Fingers up in the air”!

As it’s a natural response to tiredness, yawning during exercise may, of course, indicate that you need more sleep.

However, a new study has suggested that the reason we yawn has nothing to do with tiredness or boredom, but actually works in order to cool down our brains and help us think a little clearer.

According to the study of rats, an increased brain temperature occurred prior to spontaneous yawning, while brain temperature decreased post-yawn, signaling the body’s attempt to lower its internal temperature.

A separate study has also discovered that self-reported contagious yawning frequency in humans varies with seasonal climate variation!

Yawning is, therefore, a natural mechanism to open up airways, which increases air flow, cooling the brain.

So in theory, when your body heats up during exercise, your brain combats the warmth by triggering a yawn.