Yoga Can Do That?

Feb 20, 2020 | Healthy Living

8 Reasons to Use Yoga for Better Health and Peace of Mind

Are you feeling like you have reached a plateau with your 2020 health and fitness goals?  Are you looking for a fun, gentle way to get back on track or further your existing routine?  If so, yoga may be the answer.

Some of our recent blogs have talked about the benefits of exercise, as well as using meditation and deep breathing to help reduce stress and improve health.  We looked at the relationship between mind and body and how meditation can improve the quality of both.   Yoga is a great way to combine all of these ideas.

Yoga originated in India, over 2,000 years ago.  It was the result of a philosophy that suggested optimal health could be attained with the combination of meditation, breathing exercises, and specific poses or postures.  There are hundreds of forms of yoga, but one of the most common is Hatha yoga.  For beginners, it is a good choice because of its easier movements and slower pace.  The goal of all yoga forms is to experience peacefulness through the unity of mind and body.

Yoga has many positive effects on overall health.  The poses and postures increase flexibility, balance, and strength.  The breathing exercises allow you to tap into your body’s vital energy and increase the efficiency of bodily systems.  Using mediation as part of the yoga process helps with stress reduction and helps you center yourself.

Here are eight proven reasons you may want to consider giving yoga a try:

  • Yoga lowers your resting heart rate and sends healthier oxygen to your cells.
  • It improves circulation and can improve symptoms of neuropathy, especially in people with diabetes.
  • Muscle tone increases with regular yoga practice. This can help protect you from arthritis, inflammation, and pain.
  • Yoga increases flexibility, which helps protect your muscles and joints from injury.
  • It increases your endurance, energy level, and focus.
  • Yoga has been shown to help people manage chronic conditions and reduces the aches and pains of common illnesses.
  • It promotes better sleep, clearer thinking, and it boosts your immune system.
  • Yoga allows your body to release more serotonin, which reduces symptoms of depression and anxiety.

One of the best parts of yoga is that anyone can do it.  Poses and postures are easily modified for people just beginning a fitness program or those with ongoing health challenges.  Doing yoga even once a week provides some of the benefits listed above.  It is also a great way to slow down, focus on yourself, and achieve serenity.  If you are curious about trying yoga but are not ready to commit to a class, check for DVDs at your local library, or look for videos online. Once you experience the peace of yoga and begin to notice the positive changes in your mind and body, you will be over that plateau and on to higher ground.  Be well and keep up the good work!

Next time we will talk about Qigong and heart wellness.  We will give you more information on the benefits of combining mind and body exercises to help you keep on track with your health goals.