Yoga is a way of life. It is a practice which changes everything you do. It can improve the way you use your mind and your body, the way you interact with others, literally everything. I could write a book on the benefits it offers different individuals, however for your sanity, I will focus on a select few of the benefits of yoga.
Often in life we hold tension in our mind and body without even realising we are doing so. This tension puts our body under stress, causing unnecessary pains and problems. Yoga teaches you to be aware of your body and you begin to notice where you hold your tensions: neck, face, shoulders, eyes, quads – anywhere. By being aware, and by practising yoga asanas, we are able to release these tensions.
Improves Muscle Strength
Yoga asanas work to strengthen and lengthen our body. The postures are low impact, meaning there is far less risk of injury when practising properly than if you were to be lifting weights or partaking in other strengthening exercises. Not only do strong, toned muscles look good, they also help to protect our body from aches and pains. Yoga has also been proven to prevent arthritis, osteoporosis and back pain.
Yoga Increases Flexibility
Frequently people declare: “I’m not flexible enough to do yoga.” In truth, lack of flexibility is a perfect reason to do yoga. So what if you’re the only one in the class who can’t bend forwards, backwards, or any way in fact.
By practising yoga, your flexibility will improve & your body will thank you for it. You will start to rid of aches & pains & find everyday activities gradually become easier. Tight hamstrings can cause severe back pain & postural problems. Tight hips can put strain on your knees, tight shoulders can cause headaches…I could go on.
Yoga Aids Weight Loss
There are many different types of yoga & some aid weight loss more than others. Fitness yoga, power yoga & anti-gravity yoga are excellent ways to enhance this weight loss. However, most yoga practices do increase your heart rate & burn calories to some degree, resulting in weight loss or weight maintenance. Just because you’re not running around, working up a sweat, don’t think you’re not aiding your weight loss goal. You’ll also lower your risk of heart attack, improve cardiovascular conditioning & increase your endurance levels. Yoga can make you look better & improve your overall level of fitness.
Other benefits of yoga include:
stabilisation of blood pressure, improving your mood and reducing anxiety & depression. Yoga can lower your blood sugar levels, preventing diabetes, as well as improve stability, posture and balance, preventing falls.
Yoga practice helps to keep your mind healthy and focused, reducing the ageing process. Yoga and meditation can help you to sleep deeper, it strengthens your immune system, maintains your central nervous system, increases lung capacity, self esteem and inner strength.
Is there any reason not to start practising yoga?