How Yoga Can Amplify The Quality Of Your Life
Updated: Feb 6
Five Health benefits of Yoga
What hits your mind when you think or hear about Yoga? Do you think of Yoga as a road to peace and calmness? Certainly, it is but is not limited to it, there are numerous benefits of Yoga which doesn't limit to mind and body but also to the soul.
By intertwining the breath, the mind, and the body into one's training, yoga offers a plethora of benefits to its practitioners. From calming the mind to regenerating brain cells, from improving the heart to strengthening the body, yoga does it all. #Yoga also offers a range of exercises that are appropriate for both youngsters and the elderly.
Yoga has shown to be beneficial for back and joint pain, which is an epidemic in this screen-driven world. So if one is to say that this ancient practice holds no merit in the contemporary world, they would be so wrong. The impact of different forms on an individual's #flexibility, strength, and endurance would be different undoubtedly, still, in this article, we would discuss the overall health benefits of Yoga.
Health Benefits of Yoga
1. Straightens The Posture
Sitting at a desk all day might be bad for your back and leave you feeling exhausted. Certain yoga asanas, when practiced regularly, have been shown to improve posture and relieve back and neck discomfort.
Having better posture is a result of increased strength and flexibility. Most yoga postures, whether they be done while seated or standing, strengthen the abdominal muscles since they are used to stabilize the body.
One might expect to sit and stand straight if their abdominal muscles are strong. Awareness of your physical self is enhanced by your yoga practice.
That makes it easier to see when you've adopted a slouched or slumped posture and correct it.
2. Improves Flexibility
In order to increase flexibility, yoga positions often require you to maintain a stretch for a few breaths, enabling your muscles to move farther than they would in a regular stretch. There may be moments when you feel pain, and it may take a while before you feel the benefits of the stretches and increased mobility.
Holding a position for a longer period of time is a common practice in yin yoga, which helps the deeper connective tissues like fascia, joints, and tendons benefit from the stretches.
Keeping your breath steady and your mind clear is also essential for holding yin yoga positions.
Accordingly, making it a priority to become more adaptable can help you concentrate and stay on task for longer durations.
One of the many benefits of practicing yoga is increased mobility. The positions are sequenced to create a dynamic movement, which warms the muscles and facilitates a more profound stretch. However, the positions may be maintained for longer to increase the depth of the stretch, but not to the same extent as in Yin yoga.
Overall, many different forms of Yoga improve a practitioner’s flexibility but the approach may vary.
Hatha Yoga would be more strenuous while vinyasa would be more fluid. Either way, people would witness improved flexibility through consistent practice, over time.
3. Benefits Mental Health & Reduces Stress
Major depressive disorder (MDD) comes at top of the chart when talking about common mental health disorders in the world.
While many people know that yoga may help them become more physically strong and flexible, few have experienced the profoundly therapeutic effects of the practice.
It helps us relax, cleanses our systems, and fortifies our bodies, minds, and souls. Especially people with mental health issues have found long-term improvement through Yoga.
In the present world, anxiety and depression are among the most common mental health problems people face today, and therapists throughout the globe claim an increase in awareness of these problems as a result of modern life's increasing uncertainties. In addition to being an effective stress reliever, yoga has also been shown to alleviate sleeplessness, anxiety, and depression.
Regular practice of yoga postures has been shown to provide a wide range of benefits, including but not limited to increased stamina, self-assurance, mental serenity, and even immunity.
Regardless of the kind of exercise you engage in, you'll feel better afterward because of the positive effects on your mood that result from the release of endorphins, reductions in stress hormones, and increased oxygen delivery to the brain.
Nonetheless, yoga may offer other advantages. Increased levels of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), a neurotransmitter in the brain linked to elevated mood and reduced anxiety, may be responsible for this effect.
The emotional processing hub of the brain, the limbic system, is another target of meditation's calming effects. Your emotional reactivity decreases, and as a result, you respond to difficult events with greater composure. Traditional treatments for depression and anxiety have included pharmaceuticals and psychotherapy. Yoga, on the other hand, is effective and holds its own when compared to other alternative treatments.
4. Counters Age-Related Decline:
Journal Aging and Mental Health, published a review of 15 studies, stated that out of massage therapy, progressive muscle relaxation, stress management, music and yoga, yoga and music were the most effective relaxation techniques on depression and anxiety in older adults. And yoga provided the longest-lasting effect.
Yoga has been shown to increase cognitive abilities such as learning and memory by stimulating the growth of new connections between brain cells and causing other changes in brain structure and function.
When you practice yoga, you're building muscle in the areas of your brain that are responsible for things like recall, focus, self-awareness, and communication. A good analogy would be to compare it to working out your mental muscles.
The cerebral cortex, the part of the brain that processes information, and the hippocampus, the part of the brain involved in learning and memory, were shown to be thicker in frequent yoga practitioners compared to nonpractitioners in MRI and other brain imaging studies.
Yoga practitioners exhibited reduced deterioration in these regions of the brain as they aged compared to non-practitioners. This provides support for the idea that yoga may mitigate the deterioration in memory and other cognitive abilities that occurs naturally with advancing age.
5. Improves The Heart Health
There has been a significant increase in the past decade or so in the number of cardiologists and other specialists acknowledging that the advantages of yoga to cardiovascular health are legitimate.
Through a sequence of physical postures and breathing exercises, yogis aim to increase their physical and mental well-being by fostering greater strength, flexibility, balance, and relaxation. There are dozens of distinct yoga styles, or practices, with varying goals in mind.
Aside from relieving stress, yoga is a good lifestyle intervention since it has been linked to reduced blood pressure, cholesterol, glucose, and heart rate. According to one research, middle-aged people with metabolic syndrome who practiced yoga for three months had improvements in their blood measures and waist circumference, a sign of heart disease.
Researchers found that individuals with atrial fibrillation who took slow-paced yoga lessons twice weekly had a decrease in their episode frequency.
One further study found that heart failure patients who participated in an eight-week yoga program had increases in both exercise capacity and quality of life. Blood levels of inflammatory indicators, which may be an indicator of future cardiac problems, were also lower in this group.
It would be difficult to think of a body part that doesn't benefit from Yoga. From flexibility and strength to digestion and mental clarity.
While studies on the health benefits of yoga are still in their infancy compared to how long people have been practicing yoga, early findings are encouraging and provide validity to what yoga advocates have been saying for thousands of years.
Yoga encompasses every dimension of human existence: physical, emotional and spiritual. Yoga is a daily practice because it involves more than just physical motion. The time and money you put into your yoga practice are investments in you, which may be a bit daunting in the beginning but would pay off in the long run. You’d live more peacefully and age more gracefully, isn't that how most of us want to live?
You can't go wrong with yoga whether you want to improve your health, increase your awareness, or just unwind. You can begin your practice with some YouTube videos to get a sense of what it's all about if you're uncertain.
So what are you waiting for, start the mindful journey of Yoga to rejuvenate your mind, body, and soul.
Not sure how to start, check alwaysliveyoga.com now.