by LaToya at eHealth Informer
Yoga’s rapid rise in popularity has made it a household name in the world of health and fitness solutions. However, it seems that a lot of people are still hesitant to enter the world of yoga, largely because of misconceptions about it being hard or only for people who are “wired” a certain way.
This is completely untrue; anyone can practice yoga and enjoy its health benefits in a speedy time frame. You don’t need to be flexible or considered a “star athlete” to take up yoga; you just need to be willing to enjoy it and practice regularly. Here are some of the key reasons yoga is an exercise for everyone.
It’s Truly Whole-Person Focused: Mind, Body, Spirit
Yoga helps develop mindfulness about our thoughts and movements. Through practicing the various styles, breathing techniques and asanas, our awareness peaks, and this induces a sense of calm, peacefulness and relaxation. If you’re looking for something effective to help you think in a more positive way, yoga is a great solution.
Awareness of body movements and posture are severely heightened through practicing yoga and its variety of styles and poses. Through stretches and breathing, we gain insights into how our body functions, and how we feel when we change our state of motion and thought.
Lastly, our spirit is engaged when practicing yoga, as the yogi experiences a number of positive emotions when performing routines. Quite often yoga sessions will have a clear goal or intention, which requires the student to remain focused throughout the class. At the end, there’s a sensation of cleansing and purity, which is beneficial for our emotional health and well-being.
It’s Accessible for All
Yoga can be practiced by people of all ages. You can take from yoga what you want, and you shouldn’t push yourself too hard, especially if you feel as though you’re not ready for certain poses or stretches. Young children and the elderly can use beginner poses and routines, which will still provide them with a nutritious mind, body and spirit.
Also, if you think you have to be in pristine condition to practice yoga, think again. It’s a flexible and versatile health and fitness solution that can be tailored to the yogi’s desires.
The technological world we live in allows access to a vast amount of information on yoga via the internet. Using apps, YouTube and a variety of websites, you can learn poses and techniques in the comfort of your own home. However, if you’re accessing YouTube videos while on the go, it is worth using a secure connection; otherwise, you could be vulnerable to hackers. It is recommended that you attend a class with a qualified instructor to ensure you’re performing everything correctly, but using the Internet is a great way for those who are busy and can’t get to a class to get started with yoga.
Additionally, yoga is of great use to chronic pain sufferers and those with special needs. Poses and techniques can be adapted to all abilities so that everyone can experience its benefits. Yoga addresses typical deficiencies such as:
This is perhaps an area that yoga is mostly associated with. However, flexibility doesn’t have to mean being able to stretch your legs over your head or becoming the next contortionist sensation. All poses and styles improve flexibility, so yogis of all levels can benefit from this practice. Yoga simply improves the flexibility of your muscles and joints, which works wonders for improving mobility and activeness and relieving pain.
- Balance and Muscle Control
You’ll find that your balance improves by practicing yoga, as it develops core muscle strength through holding poses for prolonged periods of time. Increased muscle control is developed much in the same way and comes from regular practice.
These benefits are very effective and useful for people of all health conditions; for example, yoga has been shown to be beneficial to children who suffer from cerebral palsy. Through practicing asanas and deep relaxation breathing techniques, high muscle tone is significantly reduced, which is a typical characteristic of people who suffer from this condition.
It’s an Effective Stress Management Solution
Yoga is known for its ability to help people with stress relief. Through smooth, soothing and relaxing movements, our bodies become anchors and help us center our attention in the present moment, quiet our minds and focus on positive intentions.
Deep diaphragm breathing is common in most yoga practices, which helps to pump blood and oxygen around the body and to create a sense of calm and healthfulness. The breathing techniques learned in yoga can be used as general stress relievers outside of the class. Yoga is a lifestyle choice, and its benefits can be felt almost anywhere.
It Increases Balance, Flexibility and Strength
Through practicing yoga regularly, we can increase our levels of balance, flexibility and muscular strength, which is beneficial to everyone. These benefits are accomplished through holding poses and stretches for long periods of time while performing breathing techniques.
At the start of your yoga journey, you may find some poses difficult or hard to hold for longer periods of time. However, with practice and the aid of an instructor, you’ll be able to increase your abilities and performance and improve your overall health and fitness levels. It’s important to remember muscle strength and flexibility are developed over time, and that every yogi was a beginner at one point.
Overall, if you’re looking for a health solution that tackles all areas of the mind, body and spirit, yoga is a great option. It not only improves physical health, but it addresses how we feel and think, teaching us self-appreciation and compassion. Yoga is truly a lifestyle choice that is adaptable to different skills and goals. This makes it a great exercise choice for all and opens the door for everyone to enjoy the numerous benefits this practice has to offer.
Author bio: Latoya is a health and tech blogger with a keen passion for yoga. She’s been practicing Bikram yoga for many years. Before starting practicing yoga, she never thought it was the exercise for her. But now that she sees the benefits, she enjoys sharing her experiences to encourage more people to pick it up.