11 Feb What Are The Top Three Benefits Of Yoga?
Yoga is unlike other forms of exercise, it is not designed to raise a heart rate or burn fat. It is simply a form of self improvement, stemming from Indian schools of philosophy and spirituality with different styles and approaches.
People who practice yoga experience many benefits, three of which we have listed below:
#1. Yoga improves your general fitness
“Penetration of our mind is our goal, but in the beginning to set things in motion, there is no substitute for sweat.”
B. K. S. Iyengar:
Yoga is an amazing whole body work out. Your flexibility improves as you gradually build your muscle strength and ease tension. Unlike lifting weights or high resistance exercise, yoga helps to develop flexibility and balance. Practising yoga is a relaxing way to tone muscles and gain core strength.
Yoga is also proven to aide weight loss as you burn calories working through positions. You also become more aware of your own body’s comfort levels and what your body needs. Weight loss is about 80% eating habits and 20% working out and many find that taking up yoga and mediation is a great way to break old habits and start new regimes.
#2. Yoga improves your mental fitness
“Healthy plants and trees yield abundant flowers and fruits. Similarly, from a healthy person, smiles and happiness shine forth like the rays of the sun.”
B.K. S Lyengar
Studies show that people who regularly attend a yoga classes are happier. This is probably because breathing exercises or Pranayama help to raise serotonin levels and mediation helps to ease the fluctuations of the mind that cause us to worry. As yoga forces us to forget the distractions around us, we become more centred and our minds less chaotic.
Certain yoga poses have impressive stress relieving benefits and sometimes just the calm and quiet of a relaxing yoga class is an escape from our busy lives. Restorative yoga helps to rebuild the senses and makes you more aware of your surroundings and ready to take in new knowledge.
#3. Yoga improves your health and relationships
“Feel good, be good, and do good.”
All weight bearing exercise is good for bone health, yoga is good for cartilage health as the movements allow trapped fluid to be released and for fresh nutrients to be soaked up. Yoga releases the tension in our limbs from sitting at desks or in cars.
As we relax we shift from the ‘fight or flight’ alert nervous system to a calmer state. As the heart rate lowers, blood pressure decreases and the blood flows easier to the intestines and organs. This helps our immune system and internal health
As our bodies and mind become stronger and better nourished our mental attitudes change. Most people find that yoga softens them, they become more aware of others and more compassionate to their friends and families.
Of course yoga is not a one size fits all work out, we all find our own benefits.
How does yoga help you? Leave your own tips and benefits in the comments below…