Feeling stressed or tension in the body? Yoga is a popular technique for those who are looking for a healthy meditative and restorative way to de-stress. Yoga has been shown to improve physical, mental, and emotional health. Thankfully its not as hard as you might think, with poses available even for the newest beginners.


The Origins of Yoga?

Yoga comes from Indian philosophy that dates back to before 3000 BCE, and at one point was a religious practice. Modern Yoga has been changed to be more of a physical activity, while still retaining the spiritual benefits of relaxation. The word “Yoga” itself means “union,” as in uniting the body and mind. The physical poses known as yoga postures are called “asanas”.

The Endless Benefits of Yoga

Yoga offers tremendous benefits to our lives. Yoga helps individuals relax, which can help reduced stress, anxiety, and depression levels. Yoga poses can help to improve circulation and bodily functions in the body. Yoga can be a helpful in strengthening the bones and muscles in the body. The combination of breathing exercises and yoga postures can help your mind become focused.

Physical Benefits of Yoga?

Yoga is good for your body in many ways. Yoga can be a great exercise for seniors and people who have physical conditions like heart disease, osteoporosis, or arthritis. Yoga also can help strengthen the core muscles in the body, improve balance and coordination, alleviate lower back pain and reduce anxiety.  Yoga is also good for relieving stress, which is a health risk factor that could lead to more serious problems if left unchecked. Yoga strengthens your body by getting you to stretch and exert energy more than you would in a typical workout. Yoga helps your body feel strong and confident. Yoga also increases your flexibility, which could help when playing sports or leisurely activities.

Yoga and Mindfulness

Mindfulness is a mental state of being focused on the present time with emotions of calmness and oneness with yourself and your environment. Many psychologists are now looking into the benefits of mindfulness for people dealing with anxiety, depression or other mental health problems such as stress.

Mindfulness meditation is also a practice that is becoming more well-known among medical professionals. Buddhist meditation has been used for centuries to help people heal from illness through the yoga of mindfulness. This is why many dentists are now recommending it as a method to decrease anxiety and stress as well as increase concentration.

Types of Yoga

Yin Yoga – Yin Yoga is a slow and gentle form of yoga. In Yin Yoga, you hold poses for anywhere from 3 to 5 minutes, which gives the connective tissue in your joints and ligaments time to stretch.  The poses balance strength and flexibility by targeting deeper layers of muscle tissue.

Vinyasa Yoga – This is a flowing style of yoga that mimics the movements in running, walking and swimming with poses at different speeds that flow together as one breath. This is a good form of yoga if you need to increase your flexibility or move quickly through the poses.

Hatha Yoga – Hatha Yoga is the oldest and most well-known type of yoga, used by yogis for thousands of years to help relieve stress and calm the body. Hatha Yoga uses sequences of postures called asanas, which are specific body moves that stretch and relax certain muscles, joints and veins in the body.

Bikram Yoga – Bikram Yoga is a form of hatha yoga that uses a heated studio. This form of yoga is held in a room heated to 104 degrees fahrenheit, which is hotter than the human body can handle. Bikram Yoga provides benefits for both the mind and body through the heat and regular breathing exercises.

Amazing Bonus Benefits of Breathing

Awareness of Breathing – Pranayama is the act of controlling your breath to help achieve physical and mental wellness. Breath awareness practices include a variety of breathing exercises, including those that stimulate and focus on the body’s subtle energy (prana) through the nose, mouth or diaphragm.  The Yoga Sutras also include techniques for cleansing the nadis of energy blockages by using breath awareness to feel and move prana through specific channels in the body.

How To Find A Yoga Studio?

Yoga has dramatically increased in popularity again as it offers such amazing benefits to the modern lifestyle. Whether you want a 30 minute session or a full 90 minute session to relax deep into your body there are numerous locations on offer. Bikram is a great option for those who love to work up a sweat, where as Yin classes will benefit those with a slower more patient pace.