Updated: Jan 5, 2019
Benefits to your mental and physical health
It is no surprise that yoga has become such a phenomenon as in today's world we tackle multiple challenges related to our health, emotional and physical well-being, pollution and stress. Yoga is the perfect answer to finding calmness, center ourselves while also providing our bodies with nourishing exercise.
More and more proof of research emerges about yoga’s health benefits, especially in the Western hemisphere where yoga had been long wrapped in a bit of mystery as to how much it can contribute to our health and overall wellbeing. When considering one's health, we should never forget about linking our healthy-selves to our happy-selves as the correlation is undeniable. As highlighted countless times by the community of yoga practitioners, regularly doing yoga helps deepen compassionate relationships with others, increases our self-esteem, gives us inner strength to make changes in our lives or cope with challenges.
If you are at the beginning of your yoga journey or you would just like to remind yourself why you are practicing, this little writing should give you enough motivation to grab your mat and get down to your ommmm.
Bend like a pretzel
Flexibility is one of the most cited benefits of yoga, something you will come to experience relatively fast when you practice regularly. As a beginner, do not get discouraged by the first challenging sessions – you probably won't be able to grab your toes, but be patient, because persistence pays off. One of the greatest things about yoga is that the constant progress you make will keep your spirits going back for more. Hard work pays off and what seems impossible at the beginning of your yoga journey will become natural with time.
What makes professional athletes run fast, have the endurance, or lift that much weight? Strong muscles. Not only will you look better and healthier when you develop muscles you didn't even know existed before, but strong muscles will also prevent conditions such as back pain and various injuries. Your endurance and balance will unquestioningly improve too.
It’s all about posture
After a long week at the office, it feels like you need to check in to a spa for the weekend to get your bones and joints realigned with hours of massage. Familiar, right? Sitting at your desk, looking at your computer all week can result in various aches and pains that just seems to linger and not go away. If anything, these problems tend to get worse unless you proactively do something about them. Having a poor posture and constantly leaning forward will inevitably cause a strain to your neck and back #muscles. This can go as far as developing degenerative arthritis of the spine and other problems. Regular practice of yoga, with its prime focus on posture and breathing, often help to address these problems before becoming an existing condition.
Mobility and spine strenght
The gentle movements of yoga can assist in achieving higher mobility and serve as a preventative measure to avoid lasting illnesses such as weak cartilage, arthritis, and herniated disks. Most people experience back pain. Let me correct this – most people who do not exercise regularly experience back pain. When you practice yoga, you will supply your spinal disks with nutrients, especially when #practicingposes such as twists, and bends and yoga will help you stay away from herniated and compressed nerves.
Healthy blood flow
Yoga stimulates blood circulation; it helps you fight high blood pressure and blood sugar, as well as boosts levels of red blood cells and transmitting oxygen to the tissues. Some yoga positions, mostly in vertical position upside down, help your blood flow from your legs back to your heart, and lungs, and provide an extra flush of oxygen to your organs.
Getting your heart into anaerobic range, or just boosting your heart rate, will decrease the risk of a heart attack and improve your cardiovascular system too.
Feeling & Being
Regularly practicing yoga, or any exercise we love for that matter is scientifically correlated with increased levels of happiness and a stronger immune system. What else is in there for us? Increased serotonin levels, decreased cortisol, a lot of calories burnt and higher spiritual and emotional wellbeing. Higher level of discipline and focus, too. It has been proven that yoga can help improve your memory and the general sense of presence – something we all need to practice more in today's overstimulated world.
Relax, breathe in & out
Breathing is at the core of any yoga practice. Through the continuous and conscious breathing, you slow down your breath and calm your body and mind. If practiced regularly, it will help you deal with the over-stimulation of your day that often profoundly affects your nervous system. Yoga helps to improve sleep quality, which ultimately, makes you more energetic and less prone to struggle with stress-related effects.
Yoga is for everyone, doesn't require previous experience or a specific strength or muscles to start exercising. You do as much as you can first, and with time you will build your #flexibility, stamina and focus. We start our days with regular yoga classes at the pool. Enjoying the sunrise, the fresh air and the calming surroundings of the beautiful mountains. One of the favorites part of MY day!