Updated: Jul 21
The many benefits of this ancient practice.
Yoga is all about balance. Balance in your body and in your life. Yoga helps you gain flexibility and strength. You’ll walk taller, breathe easier, gain patience and be more tolerant. You will find a center peace and have an easier time being still. When practiced and incorporated into your everyday routine, you will find yourself more "present".
And that’s just a small example of the benefits of yoga. Yoga isn't just exercise, although though it is amazing for your body, your muscle and your bones; but it affects every system of your body. It is BALANCE. The poses require balance but it also brings balance to you as a entity.
The mental and physical benefits of yoga can be experienced in your energy levels, in your sleep patterns and can result into a calmer, more blissful state of being. Yoga is a path leading to a more creative, more productive and more fit and healthy version of you.
Yoga calms the nervous system by influencing your autonomic nervous system, which is your body’s master control system. The practice lowers stress and rebuilds resilience so your body can function optimally and have a greater capacity to heal. Research has found it to be very effective against anxiety. Many studies have shown a significant decrease in symptoms and measurable biomarkers. When we practice yoga the nervous system has the potential to move from ‘fight or flight’ to a calmer ‘rest and digest’ response. The physical and mental benefits of yoga can improve the quality of life, boosting your mood by releasing feel-good chemicals like adrenaline, serotonin and dopamine. Those same chemicals that give you a mood boost also help with energy. Even two minutes of yoga can give you a boost of energy and self-esteem.
Beyond the physical benefits, yoga teaches you to focus on your form and breath, helping to improve attention and concentration improving your cognitive function, including focus and processing speed. One of the ways that yoga works, is by teaching people to slow down and pay closer attention to their bodies and minds. The combined effect is that you become much more in tune with yourself on all levels — mental, physical, emotional and spiritual. When fighting an imbalance in your system, this is crucial.
It's true, yoga has been shown to increase gray matter in key areas of the brain, counteracting the natural effects of aging. The brains of yogis and meditators show less of the natural age-related decline in intellectual capacity.
Yoga is a weight-bearing practice that’s low-impact, and its ability to build strength is among its most important benefits. The practice can help maintain and build muscle mass, bolster bone quality improving balance, strength, mobility, flexibility; keeping joints and connective tissues healthy. The benefits of yoga extend to the heart too. The practice may help manage blood pressure and improve heart function including heart rate variability, which may be a measure for cardiovascular and nervous system resilience. With so many benefits, try to commit to at least one 45 minute class a week and watch how your life and health improve.