Why Yoga? So perhaps you don’t have a burning desire to chant Om or to stand on your head. Why on earth would you consider taking up yoga?
Well, there are a huge number of benefits associated with a regular practice. Here are just a few for you to mull over:
- Yoga keeps you supple and strong, clearly.
- It provides you with self-help tools to navigate life with resilience.
- Yoga has been shown to reduce inflammation in the body. Inflammation is thought to be a key contributor to illness of body and mind, including depression.
- The body contributes far more to our lives than just physical attributes such as strength and endurance. It plays a major role in emotions, learning and relationships. The body is intimately involved in all our thought processes, understanding, emotions and decision making. The mind and body are inseparable, from our endocrine system to the “brain in our gut”. Modern research suggests that working with the body is a much simpler & often more effective way to manage mental health conditions than traditional talking therapies. For people who don’t want to talk about or revisit their experiences, yoga can be a blessing.
- Breath control is a huge part of the yoga practice. Breath, body and mind are linked. By correcting dysfunctional breathing patterns you can regulate your nervous & glandular systems, improve your overall health & the quality of your sleep. You can also manage conditions such as asthma, autoimmune illnesses and anxiety & depression . I am a certified Oxygen Advantage instructor, and have an extensive knowledge of both the science of breathing. I’m also able to teach Yoga pranayama (breath control techniques) including Tummo breathing (Wim Hof Method), & Buteyko breathing.
- Yoga teaches mindfulness and awareness of the body and of habitual thought patterns. You learn to understand how physical reactions affect your physical and mental well-being. You also start to identify self-defeating negative thinking and habits.
- The postures and movements release tension caused by unreleased nervous system charge (stress / distress).
- Yoga returns the body to a state of balance particularly after serious illness or injury, trauma or periods of unrelenting stress.
- Yoga teaches grounding, the ability to be present in the moment by connection to body & breath. It takes focus away from the mind and rumination. It can help you create a sense of safety within yourself & create a more engaging experience of life.
- Via strengthening & rebalancing the nervous system, yoga improves the relaxation response of the body. On the flipside it also improves the functioning of the fight or flight or more “stressed” response. This means you can respond more effectively to times of stress and then recover your calm very quickly.
- Over time poor posture, injuries, and repeated actions like sitting at a computer all day cause the body to lose balance. Certain muscles tighten whilst others over-stretch and weaken. We can lose core stability and shoulder stability. If left unchecked this can lead to restricted range of movement & further injury, back problems & other issues such as lifestyle restrictions or loss of well-being. Yoga builds strength and flexibility equally. It keeps joints healthy & helps to maintain muscle length in correct proportion to skeletal frame. . It can reduce the incidence of injuries related to over-use of muscles, poor posture, core weakness & restricted joint movement. Yoga is great for an aging body and equally fantastic to keep a younger body young.
- Yoga regulates hormones. It can keep the thyroid healthy, help with menopausal symptoms, boost the production of serotonin and oxytocin, and reduce the levels of cortisol and noradrenaline. It also moves the lymphatic system and boosts the immune system.
- Your body is designed to move! If you haven’t been exercising much in recent times, then yoga is a wonderful, gentle, and holistic place to restart your relationship with exercise.
Additionally, if you have tried previously to meditate and failed, then yoga might provide an easier route to the Quantum Field for you. For more on that read here.