Yoga has been derived from the Sanskrit word ‘Yuji’ which means yoke or union. It is an ancient practice that brings the mind and body together.
Yoga is comprised of breathing exercises, meditation and body postures that promotes relaxation and reduces stress. These practices are being followed by people for over a thousand years for improving their mental and physical health. Even modern-day science has acknowledged the impact of yoga on our well-being.
Yoga has real healing power. It improves health, heals aches and pains and improves the immune system. Regular practise can improve sleeping habits and keep the person more relaxed and calmer.
Yoga offers various benefits-
- Improves the flexibility
The main reasons behind pains and aches are due to poor postures-
- Tight hips strain the knee joint due to improper alignment of thigh and shinbones.
- Tight hamstrings may cause flattening of the lumbar spine.
- Inflexibility in muscles and connective tissue such as ligaments.
In the first session, the person might not be able to touch his toes or perform front and backbends. With regular yoga practice, the body starts getting loose, gaining flexibility and postures which seemed impossible at one time becomes manageable. The pains and aches also disappear after some days.
- A better body image
Yoga helps in developing inner awareness. We can bring our attention to the body’s abilities. This helps in identifying mind and body strength and developing breath.
Usually, yoga studios don’t have mirrors so that a person can focus on inner awareness. It is not about physical appearance or comparing our self with others. It is more about learning about the inner self. Thus, people who practice regularly are aware of their bodies and learn to cherish it more. This promotes positive body image and self-esteem.
- Helps in maintaining and losing weight
Regular yoga practitioners are more in tune with their bodies. They are aware of what they want and desire for and what makes their life complete.
As per the research, people who practice yoga for at least 2 hours in a week would gain weight in their middle adulthood. At the same time, people who are overweight can easily lose weight with yoga practice. Yoga helps in building a positive relationship with food and eating.
- Regulates cardiovascular system
Yoga helps in lowering the blood pressure for people who suffer from hypertension. It restores ‘baroreceptor sensitivity’. This helps the body senses in maintaining the imbalanced blood pressure.
It improves lipid profiles among healthy people as well as who are suffering from coronary artery disease. Diabetic patients can reduce the need for medications as yoga helps in lowering the blood sugar levels. Due to its benefits, yoga has been included in the cardiac rehabilitation programs as well.
- Helps in strengthening muscles
Yoga helps in building strong muscles and protects the body from arthritis, back pain, body aches, etc. Yoga also makes the muscles more flexible, which wouldn’t have been possible with a gym or another kind of workouts. Yoga has many benefits for mental and physical health. Practising it regularly will enhance your health, increases strength and flexibility and makes you free from depression, anxiety and stress.