Yoga is a popular practice today amongst people of all generations, backgrounds and social groups. Yoga has developed over time with modern variations available including dog yoga, hot yoga and even yoga with baby goats. In many metropolitan areas it is seen as the trendy exercise to partake in yet those who are sceptical refer to it as “hipster” and a fad. In reality yoga is practiced all over the world and derives from ancient Indian traditions and organically understood to be spiritual and good for the mind body and soul. Since 2018 is the year the people have proclaimed for “treating yourself”, yoga is one more thing you can add to your list of ways to be kinder to yourself. Below is a list of fabulous benefits of doing yoga that we all deserve in 2018.
Yoga has been proven to improve happiness in those who practice on regular basis. This is most likely due to a combination of all the health benefits plus the joy of taking time out to relax and focus on yourself.
Yoga practice consists of focusing on the here and now. In order to conduct yoga practice correctly you have to try and block out all the noisy thoughts of life and focus simply on your body and the movements it is doing. Yoga teachers remind you throughout practice to connect with the ground or floor to help you find your centre. By achieving this consistently during yoga practice you will learn to use this skill in other areas of your life. Therefore your ability to focus on the task at hand is improved.
Yoga is a fantastic way to improve your flexibility. Yoga practice is a series of stretches and balance exercises. Although at your first class you may not be capable of completing the full stretch, over time your muscles will strengthen and you will become more and more flexible.
Continuous practice of balancing and stretching will build your core strength and strengthen your muscles. This can help ease any muscle pain you have and help with medical problems such as arthritis.
A natural part of yoga is learning how to hold yourself properly, elongating the neck and finding your centre as you sit and stand in different positions. Generally this will improve your ability to sit, stand and walk in good posture. Over time it will become more natural to you.
Relaxation exercises help your circulation, especially in your hands and feet. Moving your body into different shapes helps get oxygen to your blood and improve blood flow. This promotes blood thinning which can help decrease your chance of a heart attack or stroke.
A study was carried out upon people with high blood pressure involving yoga. They practiced Savasana (Corpse Pose), in comparison with lying on a sofa. After three months it was reported that those partaking in Savasana experienced a significant drop in blood pressure.
This is something that usually takes years of yoga practice to master however it has been proven. Some yogis can control their bodies in incredible ways. Yoga is about control. Controlling your mind and your body to balance, to stretch and to contort into shapes. Some yogis have been able to induce unusual heart rhythms.