This Is What Really Makes You Yawn During A Workout

A strenuous workout can often be the ultimate antidote for when you're feeling super tired, but have you ever noticed how sometimes moving your body makes you want to yawn even more? Apparently, this isn't a unique phenomenon, and there's plenty of science behind it.

According to Paul M. Gallo, EdD, a fellow at the American College of Sports Medicine, yawning during a workout is most commonly linked to thermoregulation, per Live Strong. As your body gets hot and sweaty, it obviously needs to find ways to cool down, and yawning just so happens to be an efficient way to lower your core temperature.

"When you inhale a large amount of ambient air that's cooler than your body temperature, it helps lower your core temperature and brain temperature," Gallo explained, adding, "a major way we cool is by breathing." Livestrong adds as you yawn, your jaw muscles contract, and blood flow is increased. When the cool air hits these muscles, they cool down and signal the brain to do the same for other muscles in the body.

You're most likely to yawn during High-Intensity Interval Training

This process is linked to the neurotransmitter serotonin, according to Bodywork. This chemical messenger is the source of a lot of complex processes in the brain, as the National Institutes of Health notes, and is most commonly known to regulate mood. But as studies have found, it's also integral in controlling body temperature and breathing which can present themselves during a high intensity workout — especially something like High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), according to Bodywork. Exercise that targets big muscle groups like squats and deadlifts can also raise your body temperature quickly, which may also lead to yawning in response (via Men's Health).

Regulating body temperature isn't always the main culprit of yawning, according to Andrew Gallup, Ph.D. As Gallup explained to Men's Health, yawning while exercising can also be your body's way of diverting blood to the muscles that you're focusing on.

And while yawning now and again during a workout is a total natural process, Gallup suggests to see a doctor if you find yourself excessively yawning while exercising as this can suggest there's something wrong with your body temperature or blood flow.