Yoga is derived from a Sanskrit word Yuji, which means a yoke or union, yoga is an ancient practice that brings together mind and body. It includes different breathing exercises, meditation and poses designed to encourage relaxation & reduce stress. Practicing yoga is said to result in many benefits for both, your mental and physical health, though not all of these benefits have been backed by science. So let’s take a look at few of the benefits one gains from doing yoga –
Betters Flexibility - Moving and stretching in new ways will helps one become more flexible, bringing a greater range of motion in tight areas. Over time, you can expect to gain flexibility in your hamstrings, back, shoulders, and hips. But as we age, our flexibility usually diminishes, especially if you spend a lot of time sitting, which leads to severe pain and immobility. Yoga helps reverse this process.
Reduces Anxiety – Lots of people began practicing yoga as a way to cope with anxiety. Interestingly enough, there is quite a bit of research showing that yoga helps reduce anxiety.
In a study, 34 women who were diagnosed with anxiety disorders participated in yoga classes twice a week for 2 months. At the end of the study, those who practiced yoga had significantly lower levels of anxiety than the control group. It’s not completely clear exactly how yoga is able to reduce symptoms of anxiety. However, it emphasizes the importance of being present in the moment and finding a sense of peace, which could help treat anxiety.
Stress Reduction - Physical activity is generally good for relieving stress and this is particularly true of yoga. Because of the concentration it requires, your daily troubles seem to melt away when you are on that mat. This provides a much-needed break from your stressors, as well as helping to put your problems into perspective. The emphasis yoga places on being in the present moment can also help as you learn not to dwell on past events or anticipate the future.
Lessens Back Pain - Increased flexibility and strength that yoga brings your body can help prevent the causes of certain kind of back pain. Many people with back pains tend to spend a lot of time sitting at a desk glued to the computer or driving a car, which causes tightness throughout the body along with spinal compression. Yoga counteracts such conditions.
Boosts Self Confidence – Performing yoga improves the mind-body connection which gives you a better awareness of your own body. During yoga, you learn to make small, subtle movements which improve your alignment, putting you in much better touch with your physical body. You might also just learn to accept your body as it is without judgment. Over time, it will definitely lead to feeling more comfortable in your own body and boost your self-confidence.
These were some of the basic but life-changing benefits of doing yoga and incorporating it in your daily life. Yoga has some incredible benefits and you will only gain them if you start doing it. If you have been contemplating starting yoga, definitely go for it, and it will change your life for the better, forever. Have you experienced any benefits of doing yoga? Let us know in the comments below. Come back for more if you enjoyed this article!