5 Benefits of Yoga
Our daily lives are incredibly fast-paced, making it easy for several physical and mental issues to arise if we aren’t intentional about slowing down and tending to our bodies’ needs. Yoga involves physical, physiological and spiritual healing practices that can positively impact the mind, body and general health.
It’s important to know that yoga isn’t about perfecting every pose, but listening to your body and allowing yourself to look inward and create strength and harmony through practice and patience. Read on to discover just a few of the many benefits of yoga and consider the positive results you can gain from incorporating it into your lifestyle.
1. Improves Your Breathing
The center of yoga is deep breathing. Long, deep breaths are incredibly healing for the body, slowing the heartbeat, lowering blood pressure and decreasing stress. You can practice as many yoga poses as you’d like, but if deep breathing isn’t taking place, the yoga practice won’t benefit the body.
2. Boosts Muscle Strength & Tone
During yoga, your body focuses on lifting. However, it doesn’t involve dumbbells or weights but simply the weight of your own body. Holding yoga poses helps to build and strengthen muscles and also increases stamina and endurance. Moves in yoga that involve stretching are also great for lengthening and toning muscles, helping to relieve tightness and keep tissues healthy.
3. Relieves Anxiety
Research has shown that practicing yoga can significantly lower levels of anxiety. The deep breathing involved provides the brain with more oxygen, signaling a state of calmness. Yoga is typically practiced with the eyes closed, which helps yogis look inward, decrease their worrisome thoughts, stay in the present moment and find a sense of peace.
4. Relieves Chronic Pains
Whether caused by an injury, illness or another source, chronic pain affects millions of Americans and has significant negative impacts on their everyday lives. Yoga can help relieve symptoms from carpal tunnel, arthritis, fibromyalgia, lower back pain, migraines and many other chronic pain conditions.
5. Optimizes Balance & Flexibility
One of the biggest myths about yoga is that you need to be flexible to practice. Practicing yoga actually uses repetition to create flexibility, helping you become more supple over time, no matter where you started. Practicing just 15 to 30 minutes of yoga each day can make a big difference in increasing flexibility, balance, posture and strength.