September is National Yoga Awareness Month, and we are celebrating by sharing the various benefits yoga has on the mind and body. Yoga is an all-encompassing experience, strengthening both the bodily muscles and the mental ones. Regular participation in yoga can lead to several benefits, including mental clarity and increased flexibility.
The benefits of yoga:
1. Builds muscle strength
First and foremost, yoga is a workout. When you practice yoga, you use your own bodyweight to strengthen your muscles by holding your weight in various poses for extended periods.
2. Increases flexibility
In a traditional gym setting, you may build muscle while sacrificing flexibility. During yoga, you stretch and strengthen your muscles simultaneously by holding deep poses, stretching and opening up the joints.
3. Facilitates weight loss
Yoga classes conducted by a certified yogi keep you moving throughout the entire session. The constant moving helps you burn calories while also enhancing your metabolism.
4. Boosts heart health
Throughout the yoga practice, there is a focus on breathing and relaxation. These exercises can help lower blood pressure and decrease artery-damaging inflammation.
5. Protects the joints from injury
Yoga works to stretch and strengthen the hips, knees, spine and other joints throughout the body. As these joints gain flexibility, they are less susceptible to injury. Regular yoga practice can even help to alleviate current joint pain due to arthritis or trauma.
6. Strengthens the immune system
Any type of regular exercise can prove beneficial for the body, but meditation partnered with yoga can further enhance the immune system. Stress and anxiety negatively affect our immune function, but yoga can help lower our stress hormones, strengthening the body’s ability to fight disease.
7. Improves focus
Yoga helps you focus on the present moment. Your only concentration is on your breath, your movements and whatever intention you set for yourself during the practice. Focusing on the present moment during a yoga session is terrific as it also helps you carry this mental awareness over into your day to day activities.
8. Makes you happier
Consistent yoga practice can help lessen symptoms of depression by increasing the levels of serotonin in the body. By regularly bringing your focus to the present moment, you free yourself of the unnecessary stress of the future, leading to an improved quality of life.
Yoga is practice benefiting both the mind and the body. It can be practiced in the comfort of your home or in a class, following the instructions of a certified yogi. There are different types of yoga for all walks of life, and the culture is very accepting of beginners. Practice yoga today to better your life tomorrow.