How to Improve Your Well-Being With Yoga. Yoga has stood the test of time and can be traced back to the Indus-Sarasvati civilization in Northern India more than 5,000-years ago. Some modern researchers hypothesize that it could be double that, making the classical origins of the practice 10,000-years old.
Many claims have been made about the enormous benefits of learning yoga, whether classical or contemporary. But which ones have been tried and tested?
Well, the team here at My Free Yoga have compiled some of the top benefits you could experience by committing to your yoga journey. Read on to see how to improve your well-being with yoga.
Improve your flexibility
This may seem like an obvious one for anyone who has previously researched or practiced yoga, but it is a vital benefit to cover.
Flexibility in the body is essential to living a full life. It not only allows us to perform basic movements like walking, turning, bending, lifting and also will enable organs to function at their full capacities. For example, helping to optimize lung function, blood flow, digestion and other critical functions.
Other benefits of increased flexibility can include:
- Reduced soreness and body pain
- Improved blood circulation
- A healthier posture
- Better balance
- Improved general physical performance and more
Maintaining flexibility into later life can also protect you from suffering debilitating falls and improve conditions such as osteoarthritis, bursitis and other degenerative conditions associated with aging.
Remember not to go too hard too fast if you are new to yoga classes or have had an extended break.
It is important to connect and listen to your body; it sends you messages all the time. It will tell you when it is time to take your asanas (postures) to the next level.
Improve Your Well-Being Builds active lean muscle
Helps encourage bone health
Performing weight-bearing exercises, like the bodyweight asanas utilized in yoga, helps strengthen your bones and fight off the early onset of conditions like osteoarthritis.
Protects spinal health
Although we covered general flexibility, spine flexibility and general health are important to cover separately. Your spine is your body’s armature, and its flexibility and general condition can significantly affect your body’s overall health.
The spine is divided up into three parts:
- Cervical (neck)
- Thoracic spine (mid-back)
- Lumber (lower back)
Your body is run by your nervous system that runs from your brain stem, through your spinal column and out to your muscles, organs, and the like, while also providing the electric signals that run your bodily functions.
If your spine has reduced mobility, herniated or compressed discs, or subluxation, then these signals can be impeded, and your body will not run at full function.
Leaning yoga helps keep the spine supple, while increased core musical strength helps keep the spine supported and strong, helping your body run in sync and at optimal performance.
Reduces stress and high blood pressure
Yoga is a unique exercise practice. While it increases your heart rate and metabolism, promoting cardiovascular health, it is done in mindfulness and relaxation.
This powerful combination can reduce your stress levels by focusing the mind, creating brain and heart rhythm or “coherence”, regulating your mental and physical state and reducing the stress hormone cortisol.
Remember, when performing your asanas in a yoga class, breathing is just as if not more important as the technique itself.
Improve Your Well-Being remembering breath is life, and regulating your breathing while performing your postures maximizes stress reduction and lowers your blood pressure.
Promotes mental health and well being
While yoga is a physical practice, at its core, it is a mindfulness practice. To get the most out of your yoga classes, you must attempt to stay mindful and “in the moment”, balancing your thoughts, focusing on connecting with your body and your intuition, and helping to achieve the brain and heart coherence previously mentioned.
Although it should not replace professional mental health care, yoga has been shown to:
- Promote gratitude and feelings of well being
- Help with feelings of depression and anxiety
- Create a sense of body/mind connection and balance
- Synchronize brain activity
- Calm the nervous system
- Promote feelings of harmony and oneness
When we have a healthy mind, we tend to make better decisions with our health and lifestyle choices.
Improve Your Well-Being by attending yoga classes is an act of self-care and self-love. When we learn to love our bodies and love ourselves, our bodies and minds love us back. This in itself is a powerful healing tool to promote the balance and well being of mind, body and spirit.
Do you practice yoga at the moment? When was the last time you took time out to connect with your body and inner self? Maybe you have already reaped the benefits of a structured yoga practice and have taken up yoga teaching so others can experience well being as well.
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